|Bill Cosby opened a monologue on Oct. 11, 1982 praising TU’s win over Louisville.|
The Tonight Show host opened his guest stint on Monday night, Oct. 11, 1982 with this line:
“I love Louisville. I love Louisville because Temple beat them, 55-14, in football Saturday night. Crushed them. I love Louisville.”
The guest host, a comedian named Bill Cosby subbing for Johnny Carson again, received loud applause from those in the audience who loved Louisville the town and Temple football.
Then Cosby went right into a hilarous routine about his playing days at Temple.
Louisville football fans did not appreciate the mention as much and flooded NBC with letters (this was before the days of email).
Evidently, there were few Louisville football fans in the Burbank audience.
There are many more Louisville football fans today.
Winning can do that for a program.
There was a time not all that long ago when Temple was not only where Louisville is now, but was much better than Louisville. History shows that the Owls are 3-2 all-time vs. Louisville, with their only losses coming, 21-12, on the road in 2003 and 62-0 at home in 2006, the first year of the Al Golden Reclamation Project. Temple has beaten Louisville by an average score of 24-12.
Louisville is rated about 105 slots ahead of Temple in the current rankings.
Temple coach Al Golden is confident that the Owls are headed in the direction Louisville is now.
Golden is not a patient man and both he and Temple fans hope they can get there sooner rather than later.
What follows below is what can happen when a superbly-coached Temple team takes the field, an account of the Owls’ 55-14 win at Louisville a generation ago.
By Jere Longman
Inquirer Staff Writer
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – There was great optimism in the Louisville athletic department last night. Basketball practice starts Friday.
Football? Well, that’s another story. Football here ranks a distant fifth to varsity basketball, intramural basketball, fast-running horses and slow-sipping bourbon.
It’s not hard to see why.
Take last night’s 55-14 humiliation by Temple (3-3). The Cardinals jumped ahead early but were helpless as the Owls steamrolled ahead, 27-7, by halftime.
Led by linebacker Tom Kilkenny, the Owls tuned up for Pittsburgh by sacking quarterbacks Dean May and Scott Gannon eight times and intercepting May twice.
”Our defense gave us good pressure to make the offense go,” said Temple coach Wayne Hardin.
|This is the Louisville weather starting tomorrow.|
Louisville’s defense was as inept as its offense, surrendering 402
yards and resuscitating the Owls repeatedly with mental lapses.
Temple played with injuries to several of its running backs but still
delivered 277 rushing yards. Harold Harmon rolled up 108 yards in the first half before exiting with a bruised heel. Rod Moore, understudy to injured fullback Brian Slade, scored twice in the first half.
Quarterback Tim Riordan completed 8 of 11 passes for 132 yards and a 38-yard
Early in the third quarter, Louisville (2-3) closed to 27-14, but its defense was too leaky to contain anyone stronger than Wisconsin-Stout. First, the Owls drew the Cardinals offside on a fourth-and-one at the 38, then repeated the trickery to gain first-and-goal at the eight. Riordan rolled right, and tightroped his way into the end zone, putting the game out of reach, 34-14.
“We’ve come close before, but recently our offense has been
sputtering,” Hardin said.
“I don’t know of another team in the country who could lose their top three runners (Jim Brown, Slade and Joe Baiunco) and still play the way these kids played.”
For good measure, cornerback Anthony Young intercepted May late in the third quarter and returned the ball 54 yards to the Louisville four. A facemask penalty put the ball at the one, backup tailback Sherman Myers (58 yards rushing) vaulted over and the margin was now 41-14. The audience of 19,223 at Cardinal Stadium was not amused.
Early in the fourth quarter, a group of students began singing, “Turn out the lights, the party’s over,” but Temple scored twice more before anyone could find the switch.
Gannon was flushed from the pocket at the four, only to be rammed by
nose tackle Bob Shires. The ball bounced into the end zone and was
pounced on by Jerry McDowell.
With 5 minutes, 29 seconds left, Young fielded a punt and returned it 58 yards for a touchdown, pulling Temple ahead, 55-14. That was the most points the Owls had scored since 1978, when they rang up 56 on that vaunted football power, Akron.
“Anthony Young had another outstanding night,” Hardin said. “That was
our first TD on a punt return in about 10 years.”
The outcome was quite unexpected and embarrassing in Bluegrass
Fueled by an earlier win over Oklahoma State of the Big 8 Conference, the locals figured Louisville football finally was emerging from the shadows of its basketball team.
Indeed, Denny Crum, the basketball coach, has been appearing on television boosting Bob Weber’s football program. The local media wondered whether Louisville’s big problem this weekend would be taking Temple too lightly.
Now Louisville’s big problem appears to be regaining whatever shred of
credibility it once enjoyed. Some schools don’t score 55 points on the
Cardinals’ basketball team.
“We just got an old-fashioned whipping,” Weber said. “We played much poorer than I ever thought possible. The first half, we were just standing around, and the second half was just an after-the-fact happening for us.”
Temple grabbed a quick 3-0 lead on Bob Clauser’s dying-quail field
goal of 39 yards.
Frank Minniefield gave Louisville some false confidence, fielding a punt and slashing up the middle for an 88-yard touchdown. The Cardinals were temporarily ahead, but it was all a mirage.
Temple quickly regained the lead, 10-7, driving 80 yards to score in
“What bothers me is that we started so slow and never got into the
game mentally,” Weber said.
Tomorrow: Fast Forward Friday