During her playing career from 1975 to 1980, Rosie Thompson became the school's all-time leading scorer and rebounder. She holds ECU's record for points with 2,352 and rebounds, with 1,183. The most accurate free throw shooter in ECU history, Thompson led the Lady Pirate team in scoring, rebounding and minutes played for three consecutive seasons.
During her career, Thompson was named as the NCAIAW Player of the Year along with numerous other awards. Still today she holds the school record for scoring in a season (723 points), and rebounds in a season (358 rebounds).
Thompson's jersey number "10" is the only Lady Pirate jersey to be retired.
Her association with East Carolina continued as she served as assistant coach for the East Carolina women's basketball team, from 1987 until 1992. In 1992, Thompson was elevated to head coach, just the fifth in ECU women's basketball history, a position she held until spring of 1995 when she resigned to become ECU's Senior Woman Administrator.