I understand that every athletic director should always be evaluating their football program and making sure that he's got all the right pieces in the right place. But the two main points brought up for the decision to fire McNeill don't seem to make any sense.
"We want someone that embraces Pirate Nation."
McNeill is an alum and letterman and chose to come back to ECU because it was his "destination job" and said,"You'll have to drag me away" from ECU for him to leave. That sounds like someone that bleeds purple to me.
McNeill took a program in Greenville, NC to a record of 43-34 (55% winning pct.) overall and 30-18 (62% winning pct.) in conference. He led ECU to 4 bowl appearances in 6 years and three of those season were with 8+ wins including a 10-3 mark in 2013.
Oh, and his geographic rivals couldn't crack the McNeill code. Virginia Tech Hokies, NC State Wolfpack, AND North Carolina Tar Heels have each lost to ECU twice in a row. For a team that is entrenched within a few hours of several ACC football programs it's a miracle that he has done this well.
The coach that he replaced, Skip Holtz, posted only slightly better numbers WITH human cheetah Chris Johnson for two full seasons.
How the players found out:
Yikes. We'll keep everyone abreast of the situation as events develop.