A super game plan guaranteed to beat Kent



A few thousand Temple fans in the crowd of 106,000 go crazy watching Bernard Pierce  score twice against PSU.



Kent State by the numbers:
1) It leads the MAC in rushing defense, allowing just 65.9 yards per game and 2.1 yards per carry.
2) Kent State and Northern Illinois are tied for the MAC lead in fewest rushing touchdowns allowed with nine.
3) Ohio, by comparison, is No. 2 in the conference against the run, allowing 115.0.
4) Senior middle linebacker and Michigan transfer Cobrani Mixon has a team-high 65 tackles, including 9.0 tackles for a loss, and 4.5 sacks.
5) Outside linebacker Dorian Wood has 60 tackles, including 10 for losses.
6) Cornerback Norman Wolfe has four interceptions.
7) Defensive tackle Roosevelt Nix has nine sacks.

From reading some of the comments about Kent State before this Saturday’s (2 p.m. start) game, you might think Temple is playing Clark Kent and not Kent State.
(Clark Kent was Superman. The Golden Flashes are no Supermen.)
This is a team that lost at Penn State, 24-0.
Temple, on the other hand, hung tough at PSU and lost, 22-13, and the Owls were leading when Bernard Pierce went down with an ankle sprain. Penn State had no shot at stopping The Franchise, but did a nice job stopping his backup, Matty Brown.
So I have a Temple game plan guaranteed to beat Clark Kent, err, Kent State.
Superman.
Bernard Pierce.
Toss in a little more Bernard Pierce on top of the Bernard Pierce you already have.

When Gale Sayers played for the Chicago Bears, you didn’t see Rocky Bleier come in for one series and and Gale the next.

If Penn State couldn’t stop The Franchise, Kent State sure won’t.
Ditch this stupid Matt Brown in for one series, Bernard Pierce in for the next, experiment. Matt Brown is a valuable member of the Owls. I would use him as a third-down slot back, a David Meggett-type back. To have him split carries with Pierce, I think, is foolhardy on Temple’s part and only helps the opposition.
When Gale Sayers played for the Chicago Bears, you didn’t see Rocky Bleier come in for one series and and Gale the next.
When Jim Brown played for the Cleveland Browns, you didn’t see Leroy Kelly coming in for one series and Brown the next.
When Paul Palmer played for the Temple Owls, you didn’t see Shelley Poole come in for one series and Paul come in for the next.
When you’ve got a Machine Gun in a firefight, you don’t set it aside and shoot every other guy with a pistol.
That’s what Bernard Pierce means to the Temple Owls.
Establish Pierce left, right and up the middle behind that 318-pound average offensive line and I guarantee you all sorts of good stuff off ball fakes to Pierce will open up for quarterback Mike Gerardi, who throws an exceptional play-action pass.
Once Pierce is established, Kent will crowd the line and guys like Rod Streater, Alex Jackson, Michael Campbell and Evan Rodriguez will be running so free through the secondary that Gerardi’s toughest decision will be choosing which ones to pick out.
By that time, Gerardi will have thrown at least three touchdown passes.
Then go back to more Pierce to run out the clock and put the game on ice.
That’s my game plan.
Will Temple use it?
If the Owls want to win convincingly, they will. If they want to play down to the level of competition, like they did against CMU and Bowling Green, they’ll keep ill-advised two-back shuttle system.

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5 thoughts on “A super game plan guaranteed to beat Kent

  1. Pierce is strong, fast, all those things, but I'm beginning to see why Temple is switching back and forth. More than anything, I think they are realizing that Pierce may be a little bit fragile (relatively speaking); he's gone down with injuries a few times now, and at critical points. Its looking like they are trying to keep him fresh for the end. If having Pierce fresh for the MAC championship and bowl is the payoff, I'll deal with watching Brown do a solid job or remembering that Temple has receivers who aren't that bad when they have a QB who doesn't lead his shot by ten yards.

  2. My only fear is that when they come up against these athletic defenses like Ohio and Kent, they'll be able to stop Brown (like PSU did) and BP won't get the carries he needs to get us to the title game.I want us in the title game and winning the title, but we have to get there first and Pierce is the thoroughbred horse we need to ride there on. Brown is the Arabian horse.

  3. Mike, Nicolaos is on to something. I didn't follow as closely last year as I am this year, but didn't BP get hurt right at the end of the season, AND didn't he get re-injured in the bowl game against UCLA?Yes, there is the risk/ reward dilemma that the coaches need to consider. Whether that means platooning the two backs, or riding BP solely to glory.I personally like seeing them win comfortably by imposing their will on lesser opponents. Letting teams hang around sets you up for possible losses a program like Temple can not allow.Correct me if I'm wrong, but the only team Matt "Dave Meggett" Brown didn't do well against was Penn State. I watched most of that game and it seemed to me if we had any kind of threat in the passing game that afternoon, the Owls win that game, right?Maybe that's the REAL issue: QB play. We seem to have found someone who can play the position at this level, and his continued success may make it possible for the platooning of BP and Brown to be very effective.That's my two cents. I'm just a life long football fan that has never coached or played organized ball, so take my thoughts for what they are worth :~)Go Owls!

  4. Your thoughts are spot on and astute. I wish our offensive coordinator had the same thoughts. Really, though, the rub here is if Kent State's defense is as good as PSU's. I kinda think it is. So giving Matty half the carries cuts Temple's chances of winning in half. Giving Bernard Matty's carries doubles Temple's chances of winning.I'm willing to roll with that toss of the dice.

  5. After I wrote my first comment, I saw the sidebar you created that highlights the Kent State defensive stats vs. the run…uh-oh!They definitely appear to pose a stiff challenge for Temple's run game. Again, I wonder how important will QB play be for this game, for that matter, for the rest of this season and bowl game?I'm a little more hopeful about the Owls chances then for my other favorite "Birds" this weekend :~)I live in the state of Washington, so I don't make it to any Temple home games, but I could imagine making a trip to Boise if they play in the bowl game there.Thanks again for keeping the Temple talk going. It's always great to come on here every couple of days and see new thought provoking material.I wish the local media in Philly were as committed to covering Temple football as you are!Go Owls!

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