Holton Ahlers

ECU quarterback Holton Ahlers runs with the football during a game from the 2019 season against the University of Cincinnati.

East Carolina University recently picked up a big football commitment for the 2021 recruiting class when Theodore Lockley committed on Sept. 1. With the 2020 season on the horizon, the Pirates continue to add to the 2021 class.

Lockley is a three-star ranked athlete who played high school football in Daytona Beach, Florida, according to 247sports.com. He committed to ECU after he additionally received offers from the University of Illinois and Appalachian State University.

Lockley had first committed to Illinois in mid-June of this year, but only kept his commitment for just over a month. He then proceeded to receive offers from the University of Cincinnati and the University of Utah, but would officially commit to the Pirates earlier this month.

The Pirates’ 2021 recruiting class already has some depth and some intriguing players beyond just Lockley.

The 2021 class now has 11 hard commits, with nine of them being ranked as three star recruits out of highschool. The highest ranked recruit thus far is versatile athlete Jacob Coleman, according to hoistthecolours.com.

Coleman has great collegiate size, standing six-feet four-inches tall and weighing 215 pounds. He is a Chesterfield, Virginia native, where he played highschool ball at Matoaca High School, according to statistics in the article.

The Pirates have a big wide receiver presence in this 2021 recruiting class, likely in anticipation of replacing it’s still young, but very talented existing core at the position. Out of the 11 commitments, five could potentially play wide receiver for ECU over the next two seasons.

ECU football has seemed to target more athletic and versatile players for the 2021 class. Along with Coleman and Lockley, the Pirates also have a commitment in dual-threat quarterback Walter Simmons III.

Simmons is another example of a great athlete who can challenge teams with his versatile skill set. Simmons is going to have to work to get some playing time coming into an already gifted quarterback room, but the Pirates could potentially use him in the future.

Another player who could potentially have a lot of success at the collegiate level is offensive guard commit Canaan Clark. Clark has great size standing at six-feet six-inches tall. He weighs 310 pounds, making him the ideal size for an offensive lineman at the college level, as reported by 247sports.com. The Cummins, Georgia native could potentially be a great addition for the Pirates in the future as he’ll walk onto campus with plenty of size to start early.

The Pirates 2021 class is currently ranked No. 8 in the American Athletic Conference (AAC), which is a step backward from last year. In the 2020 recruiting class, ECU was ranked No. 6 of 11 in the AAC.

Feb. 3 is National Signing Day for the 2021 season, which means the Pirates still have several months to add to the recruiting class. Expect to see at least a couple more quality players come up before this class is all wrapped up early next year.

With plenty of time still remaining for the Pirates to add more talent, the 2021 recruiting class for ECU could use some work, but more numbers could be very beneficial to the East Carolina football program.

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