East Carolina's Ruffin McNeil gets extension, raise

East Carolina's Ruffin McNeil gets extension, raise

[dropcap]E[/dropcap]ast Carolina coach Ruffin McNeil has been given a three-year contract extension and raise.

mcneilMcNeil, whose current deal was set to expire after the 2014 season, is now under contract through June 30, 2018.

A raise in base pay from $200,000 to $400,000 a year brings McNeil’s total compensation to $1.15 million plus incentives. He earned $950,000 last year.

After taking over the program in January 2010, McNeil’s teams were 11-14 his first two seasons before finishing 8-5 in 2012, earning an R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl bert.

“In my short time here at ECU it is apparent that Coach McNeill is building a football program that will continue to be successful on the field as well as in the classroom and in our community,” ECU athletics director Jeff Compher said in a statement. “He has embraced the concept of comprehensive excellence.

“After this season, we will be transitioning from Conference USA into the new American Athletic Conference. This presents many challenges as well as opportunities and I firmly believe that having continuity and stability in our head coach position will help to ensure our short-term and long-term success. This should send a strong message to recruits as well as our season ticket holders that Coach McNeill has our support to guide our program through this important transition.”

Last season’s team earned a share of the CUSA East Division title and the eight regular season wins were the program’s highest since 1999.

“I am both excited and humbled to be in this privileged position as the head football coach at East Carolina,” McNeill, a former three-year starting defensive back for the Pirates, said. “There’s a lot of work ahead of us, but knowing our administrative leadership team shares and supports our commitment and vision for the future will allow the progress we’ve made in all phases of our program to continue.

“I’m touched and appreciative by this measure of confidence and we’re certainly looking forward to the opportunity of consistently competing at a championship level on and off the field.”

Photo: Gerry Broome / AP

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