Tom Michel, a Pirate letterman in football from 1960-63, is considered one of the greatest backs to play the game at East Carolina. He is credited with being the first player to score a touchdown in Ficklen Stadium.
A four-year fullback under Jack Boone and Clarence Stasavich, Michel averaged 5.7 yards per carry at East Carolina and was the first fullback to play in the National Football League, serving four clubs from 1964-68.
In 1963, Michel led the team in rushing, scoring and total offense which earned him all-state honors and a nomination for the Little All-America team. During the 1963 season, he helped East Carolina to a 27-6 win over Northeastern in the Eastern Bowl in Allentown, Pa., where he earned outstanding back honors
Michel was also a member of the track and field team from 1960-62. In 1962, he won five medals at the NAIA championships.