Traditions Home

The Jolly Roger, No Quarter, and ECU Traditions

Beginning in 2007, the Pirates will adopt a new set of flag raising ceremonies at home football games. These new ceremonies reflect the historic Pirate traditions of battle at sea when pirates would hoist the colors of the crew's captain to identify themselves when attacking other sea-faring vessels.

Jolly Roger
The Jolly Roger refers to the "colors" or flag of a pirate ship's captain. Pirate vessels looked like all other merchant ships of that era. Once a Pirate was in striking distance of a targeted vessel, they would declare their intentions by showing their true colors. Various Pirates had different flags which were well known to those who sailed the sea. Most depictions of the Jolly Roger include a skull and crossbones, generally seen on a black field. The Jolly Roger was used to instill fear into one's enemies, and in many cases ships would surrender to a band of Pirates when this fearsome banner was raised.

The ECU Pirates' Jolly Roger features a skull and crossbones with the skull bearing a bandanna and captain's hat in ECU purple and gold.

No Quarter
If a ship refused to surrender, they risked the wrath of the Pirate ship's crew. Once a battle began the Jolly Roger was lowered and replaced with a "No Quarter" flag signifying that the Pirates would now take no prisoners and give no quarter to their enemy. The No Quarter flag often featured the skull and crossbones or other characteristic marks of the Jolly Roger. The two flags could easily be distinguished however due to the No Quarter flag bearing a deep red field for the background, as opposed to the common use of black on the Jolly Roger.

The ECU Pirates' No Quarter flag will feature the skull and crossbones of the Jolly Roger on a burgundy/brick red background.

ECU Traditions
In keeping with these pirate traditions, East Carolina will be hoisting the colors (raising the Jolly Roger) just before the opening kickoff at home Pirate Football games.

Following the end of the third quarter, the Pirates will raise the new "No Quarter" flag to start the fourth quarter of home football games. The flag raising will be accompanied by thrilling music and fans are encouraged to join in the excitement. Show the opponents the Pirates will give NO QUARTER by crossing your arms in imitation of the skull and crossbones! Cheer loud, stomp your feet, and show the team these Pirates will give no quarter!

The Pirates' red No Quarter flag will be flown from the beginning of the fourth quarter throughout the remainder of the game to show that the Pirates will fight on until the end, giving no mercy to their opponents.