Skip Holtz named as E. Carolina head coach - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Skip Holtz named as E. Carolina head coach

(Columbia) Dec. 3, 2004 - East Carolina University has announced that Skip Holtz, not former Clemson and Arkansas coach Danny Ford, will be the Pirates new head football coach. East Carolina hired the former South Carolina assistant to replace coach John Thompson.

This will be Skip's second head coaching job. Holtz guided the Connecticut Huskies for five years before joining his father, Lou Holtz, at South Carolina for six seasons. Skip Holtz was offensive coordinator at USC until after the end of 2003, when his father assumed those duties and Skip Holtz became quarterbacks coach.

Lou Holtz retired last week from South Carolina, and Steve Spurrier was hired as head coach of the Gamecocks. He decided not to keep Skip Holtz as an assistant. South Carolina is paying Skip Holtz $480,000 to buy out his contract.

John Thompson, who resigned earlier in November after athletic director Terry Holland told him he would be fired at the end of the season, was allowed to stay as coach for the final two games.

Thompson leaves ECU with a 3-20 record, including this year's 2-9 mark that ended with a 52-14 loss to North Carolina State last weekend.

Former Clemson coach Danny Ford, 56, was thought to be the leading candidate for the ECU job, but Thursday Ford told a reporter, "I'm on my farm today, and I plan on being here tomorrow."

The Charleston Post and Courier quoted "a source close" to Danny Ford as saying the former Tigers legend was offered the Pirates job. The paper quoted a source as saying East Carolina offered Ford $800,000 a year.

Ford led Clemson to its one and only national championship in football in 1981. He compiled a 96-29-4 (.760) record at Clemson over 11 seasons, including a 6-2 bowl record.

Updated 4:39pm by BrettWitt

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