A look at the candidates

Temple should avoid candidates who are perceived to have underperformed elsewhere, like Dave Wannstedt, Randy Shannon and Ralph Friedgen.

Financial consultants talk about the concept of risk/reward.
Simply put, they say to receive a greater reward one must accept a greater risk.
That would normally apply if you have some money in reserve.
Temple’s betting the house and the farm (and maybe the program) on this new head football coaching hire and I’m of the contrary opinion that the less risk the administration takes in this hiring, the greater the reward.

360 Tomahawk Slam Dunk: Bruce Arians
Regular slam dunk: Bill Cubit
Uncontested layup: Bob Davie
Contested layup: G.A. Mangus
Jumper with hand in face: K.C. Keeler
Halfcourt heave (no head coaching experience): Matt Rhule, Steve Addazio
Turnover: Frank Cignetti Jr. or Sr., Curt Cignetti, any Cignetti, John Latina, Ralph Friedgen, Dave Wannstedt, Randy Shannon or Paul Guenther

 This is one hire Temple can make where there is little risk and great reward because the guy who already did this job very well (better than Al Golden, really) is out there.
He’s not dead.
He’s not retired.

Bruce Arians:
Tomahawk 360 slam dunk

He’s really the one guy out there who would be well-received by the great majority of our fans.
Iowa coach Kurt Ferentz said it best in a 2005 unsolicted comment during an interview with the St. Louis-Post Dispatch, talking about coaching changes: “Look at Temple. The biggest mistake they made was firing Bruce Arians. They still haven’t gotten over it.”
This is an opportunity to right that wrong and move the program forward in the process with a guy still young enough to do the job.
Arians is still very much involved with football at its highest level.
Enough about Bruce Arians, though, the only coach I will put in the “no risk” category.
The argument about him “doing it 22 years ago” is ridiculous because the Temple job now, while hard, is 10 times easier than it was 22 years ago. Yeah, the landscape has changed _ for Arians’ benefit. When you go from a rock-strewn practice field (now the Student Pavilion) to a $7 million practice facility and a $500,000 sprinturf field, that’s some pretty damn good landscaping right there. Everything at Temple now is easier than when Arians had to walk through that mine field.
The other guy I’m “somewhat sure” can do the job is Philly native Bill Cubit. He’s the Western Michigan head coach. In his short time in Kalamazoo he’s had winning seasons, gone to bowl games, beaten Big 10 teams like Illinois and Iowa (with MAC talent) and never lost to Temple. He’d have twice as much talent at Temple and only needs to beat one Big 10 team to earn his paycheck in my mind.

Bill Cubit: Regular slam dunk

Yet he reportedly has expressed no interest in Temple. Maybe he’ll change his mind and elect to come home.
We can only hope.
Other than that those two, I’m hearing the same names as you are and, I must admit, I’m a little underwhelmed.
The top names on the list, in no particular order, are Cincinnati Bengals’ (what have they done?) aide Paul Guenther, Pitt offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti, Jr., former Notre Dame head coach Bob Davie, Temple offensive coordinator Matt Rhule, Delaware head coach K.C. Keeler, Florida assistant Steve Addazio and South Carolina quarterbacks’ coach G.A. Mangus.
The second group talked about includes retreads like Dave Wannstedt, Randy Shannon and Ralph Friedgen. I don’t think any of those three are serious candidates. Let’s keep it that way. I think Temple should avoid those three at all costs because it would send a message that Temple is willing to take someone who is considered to have underperformed elsewhere. Bad message to send the fan base. Bad message to send the nation.

Bob Davie: Uncontested layup

If that’s all there is, as Peggy Lee once said in a song, don’t expect the fan base or whatever is left of it to get all fired up.
Five years ago, we were talking about Al Golden, Rick Neuheisel and Jim Harbaugh as Temple coach.
Maybe a big-time candidate with pizzaz will pop up at the last moment, but I don’t see it.
I think Mike Leach would have done a fine job here and his hiring would have sent a message to the world that Temple is serious about winning in football, but I think the university is too politically correct to do this. Yet Maryland doesn’t care about political correctness and appears poised to hire Leach now.
Guenther would be an absolute joke. Nobody knows him. Nobody cares about him. He’s never won as a head coach anywhere. He’s got no ties to Temple. If they hired him, you can board up the Edberg-Olson Complex right now because Temple would not draw more than 5,000 a game next year sans Penn State.
I know Rhule is well-liked within the E-O, but there’s a big world outside the E-O and there was no more underachieving facet of Temple’s football team in 2010 than its offense. To give the top job to the guy who was in charge of a failed endeavor would be a huge mistake and probably sell maybe five more tickets than the 5,000 who would show up to watch Guenther’s Temple team.
K.C. Keeler, I think, would prefer to stay in Delaware. His success was based on D1A transfers and he wouldn’t get those here, so I have doubts about him doing the job in Philadelphia even if he was interested.
So, in my mind, it’s down to Mangus and Davie.

G.A. Mangus: Contested layup

 I think Mangus can do the job. He might be the most intriguing of the non-Arians’ candidates.
He was a head coach at Delaware Valley and he was a legend in Doylestown. If that was his last stop, I’d say no but he worked for The Old Ball Coach (Steve Spurrier) at South Carolina and is every well thought of down there. He can recruit. He can head coach. He’s an offensive mind. I like him. I think he can do the job. I’m not sure, though. There’s that risk thing again.
Davie was a winner at Notre Dame and brings more of a recognition factor to Philadelphia. He was 35-25 at Notre Dame, is a great recruiter, originally from Pennsylvania, wants the Temple job because he interviewed for it in 2005 and now has sent feelers to the university that he’s interested again. I like him. I think he can do the job.
I’m not sure, though.  Again, a risk but a slight one.
So there you have it, a couple of guys I’m relatively sure can do the job and a handful of guys I think can do it.
Do you roll the dice or play it safe?
I know what I would do.

If you close your eyes, it’s easy to imagine Ann Weaver Hart having the same conversation about the same concerns with Temple offensive coordinator Matt Rhule.


5 thoughts on “A look at the candidates

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I want to narrow the search down to guys who have been successful HEAD coaches in the past and eliminate assistant coaches entirely. I'm hearing Temple is leaning the same way and giving interviews to current assistants as a courtesy only. I hope what I'm hearing is right.

  3. Mike — have you heard anything about who, in fact, Temple has interviewed among head coaches?

  4. Just Rhule so far.I think Addazio is Monday.Don't like either.

  5. I am a student of Temple, but have been a longtime fan of Florida. Addazio is intriguing candidate. He is one of the top recruiters in the country, and has brought in a number of good prospects to Florida from the Northeast. He did a good job overseeing the Florida Program while Urban Meyer was on leave. The biggest areas of concern with him are that he has not been a head coach since high school (in CT) and seems to struggle with in game adjustments.

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