Smith's emotional return to ECU
East Carolina hired Rick Smith as defensive coordinator and secondary coach Friday.
Smith was the Pirates' defensive backs coach from 2005-2009 under Skip Holtz and followed Holtz to South Florida as secondary coach.
Smith replaces Brian Mitchell, who was let go by head coach Ruffin McNeill.
Mitchell drew the ire of a portion of the Pirate fanbase for his 2012 defense, especially, that ranked seventh in Conference USA in scoring defense and 10th in pass defense.
Smith was emotional as he discussed his return to Greenville in a press gathering Friday.