The East Carolina Pirates currently have a uniform contract with Nike. We have 12 football uniforms in our database for the East Carolina Pirates and are working to add more to Uniform Critics. Feel free to contact us with any uniform designs for this team that we may be missing.


Purple, white and a pinch of yellow.

There’s not much Nike can do with East Carolina’s on-field look when the Pirates refuse to incorporate an alternate color into their scheme.

Since the 1970s, ECU’s helmet of choice has been a majestic purple with a swashbuckling-style “ECU” wordmark as its graphic. Making its debut in the 2009 season opener however was an updated, fiercer graphic of a skull and crossbones with a pirate hat.

Still, the same question is asked before every football season: When will we see black alternates in Greenville? Rumors have swirled for years and the hype hit a fever pitch after this spring when head coach Ruffin McNeill tweeted a photoshopped concept picture of a matte black lid with an oversized skull and crossbones graphic. Then on September 1st, the staff revealed the new black uniforms to the team. They will be worn on Thursday night, Sept 5th, against FAU.

McNeill said the word traveled so fast on Sunday that many of the team’s current recruits and commits were ringing the coach’s phone to share their excitement. “My phone was blowing up,” McNeill said, noting that the black uniforms are not a “one-night wonder” and that they will allow the Pirates to use numerous different color combinations in the future. “We only get one call right now (with each recruit per week) but they can call us anytime, and they were excited.”

The other current combinations include the preferred purple on white at home and a clean all-white get up away from Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. All-purple has been worn for special home games, but ECU’s uniform style — generic with contrasting collars, sleeves and varsity numerals — hasn’t changed since 2009.

Present Nike designs are much better than what the Pirates were forced to work with during the program’s infancy stage with the swoosh. During the early to mid 2000s, ECU’s wide piping — especially on its home white jerseys — nearly swallowed players whole on television, stretching from shoulder to mid-thigh. Player numbers on the tops of shoulders have since moved to sleeves resulting in a much cleaner appearance while yellow facemasks switched to purple in 2005 after two decades of contrast.

The Pirates are currently in their third year of a five-year agreement with the swoosh and are hoping to enhance their image before the contract expires.