Mids’ game at E. Carolina post­poned un­til Nov. 19

Baltimore Sun - - RAVENS & NFL - By Bill Wag­ner

Navy foot­ball will have an un­ex­pected bye this week be­cause of the lin­ger­ing ef­fects of Hurricane Matthew.

The No. 25 Mid­ship­men, high off a 46-40 win over pre­vi­ously No. 6 Hous­ton, were sched­uled to play at East Carolina in a na­tion­ally tele­vised game Thurs­day night, but the game has been post­poned be­cause of con­cerns about flood­ing in the area.

Hurricane Matthew de­liv­ered a se­ri­ous blow to east­ern North Carolina over the week­end, lead­ing to 20 deaths, caus­ing wide­spread power out­ages and strand­ing more than 1,500 in the city of Lum­ber­ton.

Con­cerns about ad­di­tional flood­ing prompted East Carolina of­fi­cials to post­pone the game. Navy and East Carolina will meet at Dowdy-Ficklen Sta­dium on Satur­day, Nov. 19, when both schools had an open date. Game time and tele­vi­sion in­for­ma­tion have not been an­nounced.

East Carolina ath­letic di­rec­tor Oct. 22, 3:30 p.m. TV: CBS Sports Net­work Ra­dio: 1090 AM, 1430 AM Jeff Com­pher said school ad­min­is­tra­tors con­sulted with emer­gency man­age­ment of­fi­cials and de­cided the pru­dent de­ci­sion was to shut down the univer­sity un­til at least Satur­day. The im­pend­ing crest­ing of the Tar River is ex­pected to threaten Greenville and sur­round­ing coun­ties through late Satur­day.

“Based on the lat­est in­for­ma­tion and pro­jec­tions we have re­ceived re­gard­ing the ris­ing wa­ter level and sub­se­quent ad­verse travel con­di­tions in east­ern North Carolina the re­main­der of the week, we feel it is nec­es­sary to en­sure the safety of ev­ery­one in­volved,” Com­pher said. “We are thank­ful for our col­leagues at the U.S. Naval Acad­emy for their compassion and un­der­stand­ing to as­sist us with this sit­u­a­tion.”

Naval Acad­emy ath­letic di­rec­tor Chet Glad­chuk said he re- ceived a phone call from Com­pher early Mon­day morn­ing pro­vid­ing no­ti­fi­ca­tion the univer­sity was con­tem­plat­ing post­pon­ing the game. Glad­chuk told Com­pher the mat­ter was en­tirely in the hands of East Carolina ad­min­is­tra­tors and that Navy would com­ply with what­ever de­ci­sion was made.

“Emer­gency of­fi­cials in the re­gion are very con­cerned about the ris­ing wa­ter. The storm surge is ex­pected to be sig­nif­i­cant, and that is a ma­jor safety is­sue,” Glad­chuk said.

“Ap­par­ently, the sur­round­ing ar­eas have al­ready suf­fered ma­jor dev­as­ta­tion. To not of­fer our un­con­di­tional sup­port on this is­sue would be lu­di­crous.”

Glad­chuk has been on the other side of sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tions and said the host univer­sity must do what­ever it deems nec­es­sary.

“You have to lis­ten to the in­tel­li­gence com­ing out of that par­tic­u­lar com­mu­nity and use com­mon sense,” Glad­chuk said. “To not re­spect the con­cerns of the East Carolina com­mu­nity would be ir­re­spon­si­ble. Our re­ac­tion is pred­i­cated ex­clu­sively on Navy’s Bran­don Colon catches a touch­down pass in Satur­day’s win over then-No. 6 Hous­ton. The Mids’ game at East Carolina on Thurs­day night was post­poned be­cause of the threat of flood­ing linked to Hurricane Matthew. the po­si­tion of the East Carolina ad­min­is­tra­tion. It goes well beyond a foot­ball game. This is an in­sti­tu­tional mat­ter down there.”

Com­pher said the east­ern North Carolina re­gion is al­ready ex­pe­ri­enc­ing wors­en­ing road con­di­tions with sev­eral de­tours along Route 264, the main artery into Greenville from the west.

“There are also road clo­sures from the north and south, so we are quickly be­com­ing a lit­tle is­land,” Com­pher said.

East Carolina stu­dents were due to re­turn to cam­pus from fall break Wed­nes­day. Com­pher said school ad­min­is­tra­tors did not want them trav­el­ing back to Greenville un­der such cir­cum­stances.

Adding to the travel woes is that Pitt-Greenville Airport closed in­def­i­nitely Sun­day. Navy’s trav­el­ing party had been sched­uled to fly into that airport.

A crowd ap­proach­ing 40,000 was ex­pected for the Thurs­day night game, which would have been tele­vised na­tion­ally by ESPN. East Carolina ath­letic of­fi­cials had dubbed it a “black­out” game, with stu­dents and fans en­cour­aged to wear all-black cloth­ing.


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