McNeill & Riley to lead East Carolina football team - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/22/10

McNeill & Riley to lead East Carolina football team

GREENVILLE, NC (KCBD) - Ruffin McNeill was officially introduced Friday morning as the head football coach of the East Carolina Pirates.

After speaking to the media, no surprise, Ruff received rave reviews. Taking over his alma mater, Ruffin threw out a trademarked pump fist telling the crowd he was home.

Ruffin played for East Carolina from 1976 through 1979 and said it was an easy sell to come back to the Pirates. The 51-year-old spent 10 years at Texas Tech and has 24 years of coaching college football but this is his first head job. He and East Carolina have outlined a 5 year deal worth $1 million a year. There are bonuses if he makes the conference USA title and if he wins a bowl game. 

The next big question was, who will follow Ruffin to East Carolina? NewsChannel 11's Pete Christy spoke with Mike Leach Thursday night and asked him if he though Ruff would hire Lincoln Riley as the offensive coordinator. He told us, "He will if he's smart."

Friday, Ruffin did in fact announce that Lincoln Riley will be the offensive coordinator at East Carolina. The two did a terrific job keeping the Red Raiders together at the Alamo Bowl leading Tech to a win over Michigan State.

Learning offense under Mike Leach, Riley did an outstanding job calling plays in the bowl game. The 26-year-old and McNeill will now lead the East Carolina Pirates.

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