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ECU Fans Go To War Against Cracker Barrel

Aug 10, 2008 – 12:52 AM
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Nathan Fowler

Nathan Fowler %BloggerTitle%

For anyone who has driven through the southern portion of the US, the name Cracker Barrel brings up images of biscuits, chicken fried steak and a general store packed with goodies like Moon Pies and all sorts of trinkets. Evidently though, an East Carolina fan noticed a small problem at the local Cracker Barrel in Greenville, NC - it didn't stock enough ECU gear, but had plenty of items bearing the logos of UNC and North Carolina State. Being a conscientious college football fan, he sent in an e-mail to Cracker Barrel requesting they stock more Pirates gear in Greenville ... and got this in response:

[...] since this is a small school that plays in a small conference there are few manufacturers that will make ECU merchandise [...]

That wasn't a very well thought out response from the PR rep - ECU is a school with a very proud football tradition, has put a number of players into the NFL (Jeff Blake and David Garrard, to name a couple), has a large and rabid fanbase in the coastal region of North Carolina, and there is no shortage of available purple Pirate gear in the entire region, obviously someone is making it. Predictably the e-mail ended up on the popular ECU fansite Boneyard Banter and ECU fans took to their e-mail inboxes and launched a protest campaign against Cracker Barrel. They won a quick victory, as Cracker Barrel responded:

[...]I also am very sorry for the response sent by one of our Guest Relations Representatives. The response was not an informed nor researched response. I apologize the response seemed insensitive to your concerns for the lack of ECU merchandise offered by Cracker Barrel Old Country Store. Please be assured this error has been addressed and corrections have been made within our department.[...]

[...] We do have a limited number of items available in East Carolina University in our Greenville, NC location only. We have sweaters, t-shirts, hats, children's cheerleader and football outfits, coasters, garden flags, a hand-painted Christmas ornament, quilt, hand-painted lamp, and a coffee mug. If while you are visiting our Greenville store you don't find this merchandise, please ask one of our retail sales associates to assist you in locating these items. [...]

"Corrections have been made within our department" certainly sounds ominous, maybe the Pirates have forced another one to walk to the plank. In any case, sign me up for one of the hand-painted Christmas ornaments and maybe a coffee mug. And some chicken fried chicken with that awesome white gravy. Oh, and can college football season please start soon? I think the offseason is starting to drive some folks crazy.
Filed under: Sports