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Pirates to play at Florida in 2015 in football

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GREENVILLE, N.C. -

GREENVILLE, N.C. - East Carolina and Florida have agreed on a single-game contract for the Pirates and Gators to play at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on Sept. 12, 2015, according to a joint announcement by both institutions Thursday.

 

The meeting will mark ECU's second visit to Gainesville and first since 1983 when No. 6 UF used a late fourth-quarter touchdown run by Neal Anderson to post a 24-17 victory on Oct. 22.

 

"I'm sure many of our fans will remember the last time we played in The Swamp," East Carolina Director of Athletics Jeff Compher said. "While it's a great opportunity to compete in that environment against a program with the tradition Florida has, I'm confident Coach (Ruffin) McNeill will have the Pirates ready to play."

 

The contest against Florida will also maintain the continuity of Southeastern Conference opponents on the Pirates' future schedules, which includes visits to South Carolina in both 2014 and 2016. In addition to a 17-game series with the Gamecocks that dates back to 1977 and one previous encounter with the Gators, ECU has also faced current SEC members Alabama (1998), Arkansas (2010), Auburn (1985, 1986, 1994), Georgia (1990), Kentucky (1993, 2009), LSU (1981), Missouri (1982, 1983) and Tennessee (1995) in its history.

 

ECU's 2015 non-conference schedule now includes road games at Florida and BYU with home matchups again Virginia Tech and an opponent to be announced.

 

The Pirates, who compiled a 10-3 record and made their seventh bowl appearance in the last eight years in 2013, will open play in the American Athletic Conference this season after a 17-year membership in Conference USA.

 

Florida was 4-8 under third-year head coach Will Muschamp last fall.

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