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East Carolina Pirates 2013 NCAA Football Gambling Odds & Predictions

2013-14 Football Previews – (CUSA) – Pirates

East Carolina was highly successful under Skip Holtz during his time at the school, but they have been unable to match that success since he left. Last year’s team went 8-5 and showed lots of promise. With 8 starters returning on each side of the ball, expectations are high for this squad.

Conference USA 2012-2013 College Football Previews: East Carolina Pirates (Team Link)
Head Coach: Ruffin McNeill
2012 Record: 8-5
East Carolina Gambling Odds to win BCS Championship: +2,000 (Part of Field)
East Carolina Gambling Odds to win Conference USA East Division: +185
East Carolina Gambling Odds to win Conference USA: +375

The air raid offense is how East Carolina plays under Coach Ruffin McNeill. This is a team that can pile up the points in bunches. The Pirates are playing in their final year in Conference USA. They will move to the Big East next season. East Carolina is looking to win Conference USA one last time before they move on.

Team Strengths:

Shane Carden fits the mold of an air raid attack quarterback very well. Carden got a lot of playing time last year, and that will help this team a lot in the year ahead. Justin Hardy is one of the best receivers in the conference, and I expect him to be targeted many times this season.

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Vintavious Cooper returns as the team’s top running back as well. This offense has a ton of firepower returning at all the skill positions.

The Pirates have a veteran offensive line that should be one of the best in the conference. Between the five guys starting on the line this year, they will have more than 80 career starts between them. This is a big line that should do a very good job in both run and pass blocking. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

It’s been a long road, but the Pirates are getting better on the defensive side. An area of strength is the defensive end positions. East Carolina has a lot of speed on the edges now, and that should help them get a better pass rush going.

Team Weakness:

The Pirates secondary will still struggle against Conference USA quarterbacks. There are a lot of teams in this league who can pile up the passing yards, and East Carolina just doesn’t have the secondary to slow them down much at all. The safeties are particularly poor, and East Carolina is very prone to giving up the big play. If East Carolina is going to win this conference, the secondary has to be a little bit better.

Overall team depth is a concern for East Carolina. The Pirates have a good amount of talent at key positions all over the field, but if people start getting injured there is a large drop off in the ability of their backups. Most teams face injury trouble at some point in the season, and if East Carolina does it will likely hurt them quite a bit.

2013-2014 East Carolina Football Prediction: 8-5

I see a very similar season to last year for the East Carolina Pirates. The team has to travel to Marshall, which will likely decide who the winner of the East Division is. East Carolina has one of the toughest non-conference schedules in this league. I just don’t trust this defense enough to predict any more than eight wins this season.

2013 Pirates Schedule

8/31/13 7:00 PM ET OLD
9/5/13 7:30 PM ET FLATL
9/14/13 12:00 PM ET VATCH
9/28/13 TBD @NCAR
10/5/13 TBD @MTENN
10/12/13 3:30 PM ET @TULNE
10/19/13 TBD SOMIS
11/2/13 TBD @FLINT
11/9/13 TBD TULSA
11/16/13 TBD UAB
11/23/13 TBD @NCST
11/29/13 12:00 PM ET @MARSH

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About Kyle Hunter

Kyle Hunter sports picks – A degree in finance and a great ability to follow important trends and statistics set him apart from the rest. Totals are Kyle's specialty, so look for a lot of totals picks from NBA, NCAAF, & the NFL. Check out his plays today.