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The First 150: Heather Macy

Head Coach Heather Macy and her staff
Head Coach Heather Macy and her staff

Sept. 28, 2010

GREENVILLE, N.C. - September 27, 2010 marked East Carolina women's basketball head coach Heather Macy's 150th day heading the program. ECUPirates.com recently caught up with Coach Macy as she shared her thoughts and visions for the upcoming season.

What are some of the most memorable moments about your first 150 days on the job?
Obviously, there are many moments that stick out in my first 150 days at ECU. Having the opportunity to represent the University by throwing out the first pitch at a baseball game, riding in the Winterville Watermelon Festival Parade, attending numerous speaking engagements and meeting the Pirate Nation have been thrilling. However, the most exciting event for me has working with the current players on and off the court to help them reach their goals. I am constantly thinking about how we can utilize the talents of each player in our system. I can't wait for official practice to begin on October 4th.

What were you looking for when hiring the coaching staff?
There were several things I was looking for when hiring this staff. First of all, I wanted to hire people with high integrity and character. I was very fortunate to find great assistant coaches who share my vision for what this program can be and where I want it to go. Not only does this staff share my mindset, but it also has a tremendous record of success at numerous levels of basketball. Each coach has been associated with championship teams at various points in their careers. Having grown up in eastern North Carolina or actually attending ECU, they believe in the strong sense of community in Greenville and are passionate about the Pirates.

What excites you most about the returning players?
Athleticism, versatility and basketball ability excite me the most about this team. From what I have seen in preseason workouts, we have players who will fit into my style of play. There are players who are interchangeable and can play anywhere on the floor and it is my goal to make us difficult to scout and guard. Playing 94 feet for 40 minutes is a cornerstone of my philosophy. The players have bought into that and have been training to play that way. I think fans will really enjoy watching our team defend and score.



What are you looking forward to in the remainder of September and October?
This is an exciting and anxious part of the year. We are all looking forward to the first official day of practice, but we have a few more days to get prepared to hit the ground running. We have been keeping busy training, but we've also been on the road recruiting and hosting campus visits. It's always great to visualize what the future of this program holds, but honestly I'm enjoying each moment and each day to the fullest.

How familiar are you with Conference USA and its teams?
Obviously, I have studied the statistics and watched the videos of last year's games. C-USA is a very talented league with many of the leading scorers returning. The team and I are looking forward to accepting the challenge of contending for championships in one of the best conferences in the country. Learning how to adjust to and prepare for the travel schedule will be new for me.

During the last two seasons, the Pirates are 24-4 at home, have led the league in attendance and have drawn crowds ranked in the top 100 nationally. What are the staff and players doing to make sure this success in Minges Coliseum continues?
We have been working extremely hard during individual skill development sessions, weight workouts and conditioning times. The players and I take great pride in defending Minges Coliseum and that record. The fans definitely make it a tough place to play.

Many coaches talk about running up and down the floor on offense. However, you have been able to back up that claim by having the nation's top offense in past seasons. What is so innovative about your offensive philosophies?
I think my offensive and defensive philosophies have been successful because they are fun for the players. Therefore, they buy into and believe the style of play I am trying to sell. It is definitely harder to prepare and train for but well worth the sacrifices in the end. Playing such an up-tempo style allows more players to get into games and be involved in the action. Pressing and scoring are exciting, but the way we play also allows the ladies to make plays and learn how to play the game.

Why are Pirate fans such an important part of the East Carolina women's basketball experience?
Pirate fans are an incredible part of the East Carolina University experience. As we talked about before, Minges is one of the toughest places to play in C-USA. I think the fans are responsible for the atmosphere. Away from the court, the fans make Greenville feel like home. They are very supportive, flying their Pirate flags on game days and have taken a vested interest in our ladies. We work hard, so that you all will have something to cheer for on game days. I promise that you will be proud of the product we put on the floor each night. These kids will compete on each possession and that is just one reason you won't want to miss a single home game!