Charles had been broadcasting games for ECU athletics for 30-plus years, including 15 bowl games and over 1,000 basketball games.
WNCT Greenville reported that Charles, 70, suffered a "medical incident" and was attended to by ECU trainers and then by emergency personnel before dying shortly after.
"We are deeply saddened and shocked by the passing of longtime Voice of the Pirates Jeff Charles," ECU athletic director Jon Gilbert said in a statement. "Our thoughts and prayers are with Debby, Britt and all of his family and friends. Jeff was a true professional in every sense of the word who had a unique ability to bring the game to life and connect with listeners.
"He means as much to anyone to ECU football, basketball and baseball fans, and we know Pirate Nation is mourning together tonight. His iconic ‘You can paint this one purple’ will remain an integral part of ECU Athletics history."
East Carolina head football coach Mike Houston posted to social media to offer his prayers to the family.
"Got the news earlier tonight……devastating….Jeff was the consummate professional……always on point and always first class," Houston wrote. "Thoughts and prayers go out to his family. All of Prate [sic] Nation mourns with you. We Love you Jeff."
Phillip Rogers, ECU chancellor, also expressed his condolences to Charles’ family.
"If you know [ECU Athletics], you know Jeff Charles. His [Pirate] pride was evident on every broadcast and in every game," Rogers posted to Twitter. "He will be greatly missed. Sending prayers to the Charles family."
Charles was named the North Carolina Sportscaster of the Year in 2000 and 2014 by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, according to the school.
The game between the two schools from the American Athletic Conference has yet to be rescheduled