The Pirates will "Paint It Black" for their Conference USA opener against Florida Atlantic Thursday night at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.
East Carolina unveiled new all-black Nike game uniforms during a team meeting Sunday night.
"I'm excited about it. The kids were excited…The coaches were excited. We held it from them," Coach Ruffin McNeill said in his weekly press conference Monday morning.
There has been talk for many weeks on whether the team would sport an alternate uniform at some point this season. School officials had previously said it wasn’t going to happen. They planned to make the surprise announcement this week.
According to an ECU News release, the original plan was to reveal each piece of the uniform on the ECU Pirates website. However, a picture of the jersey was leaked early and it went viral Sunday night.
Students on campus were pumped to hear the news.
"I like that our all black uniforms look intimidating. I think the Florida team is going to be scared of us,” Tyler Hunt, a freshman, said.
"They are really nice and ECU is stepping up their game starting with their jerseys,” Rohan Parekh said.
“Yeah, I think that can pump up the crowd a lot especially if everyone in the audience also wears black too or something," Grant McEvoy said.
After making its debut, “ECU will incorporate the new look with its existing apparel lineup of purple and white to offer the Pirates multiple combination options throughout the season,” the news release said.
"This is not a one-time wonder. It's not a one night wonder. We still have white on white, purple on purple, purple on white. That's still part of our mix. But now we're able to have some different match combinations,” Coach McNeill said.
All fans are encouraged to wear black t-shirts Thursday night when the Pirates host Florida Atlantic at 7:30 p.m.