Matt Rhule’s teleconference on Monday.
Before the season started, even Stevie Wonder could see how the 2013 season broke down for the Temple Owls.
There were five “probable” wins on the schedule in Fordham, Idaho, Army, Memphis and UConn and three “probable” losses on the schedule in Louisville, Cincinnati and Notre Dame.
The key to a winning season, then, comes down to holding serve in those five games and splitting two of the four remaining games: UCF, Rutgers, Houston and SMU.
Well, since Houston was a winnable game left on the table, the Owls have to win two of three. I think Rutgers is a very gettable game and maybe SMU. I don’t think the Owls beat UCF, even at home.
If they don’t utilize their offensive weapons better or fix the kicking game, it’s just not going to happen for Temple this season. I don’t see how when you have a Chris Coyer, a Zaire Williams, a Khalif Herbin and a Jalen Fitzpatrick, you can’t put those players in a better position to score than you have the first two games. (Although Herbin did not play the first two games.)
That has got to be fixed.
I haven’t seen very many good
offensive plays in the first two games.
Coyer running the ball off a pitchout
would be a good play.
Another is getting Coyer
a simple pitch out to throw
the ball downfield.
Heck, pitching the ball out
to Coyer 10 times a game
(five throws, five runs)
is a better play than any
10 I’ve seen so far this season.
Heck, even the probable wins might be in jeopardy if the Owls don’t start lighting up the scoreboard the way they are capable of going forward. This is a very good offensive line but some solid skill position people have been under-utilized so far.
The defense, which held Notre Dame to one touchdown in the second half, looks like it’s good enough to keep the Owls in the games against just about everyone left else on the schedule. Phil Snow has been a better defensive coordinator than I thought he would be.
So it’s mostly about fixing the offense now.
John Chaney became a Hall of Fame coach by consistently getting the ball in the hands of his scorers. Matt Rhule is going to have to do a better job of getting the ball in the hands of his scorers.
You can talk all you want about the offensive coordinator, Marcus Satterfield, doing this but only Rhule knows what many of those guys have done in the past and he’s got to dictate the flow of the ball. When you have John Christopher throwing the ball, that’s a bad play and not just because it didn’t work but because Fitzpatrick and Coyer are better passers than Christopher is.
Satterfield might not know that, but Rhule certainly does.
I haven’t seen very many good offensive plays in the first two games. Coyer running the ball off a pitchout would be a good play. Another is getting Coyer a simple pitch out to throw the ball downfield. Heck, pitching the ball out to Coyer 10 times a game (five throws, five runs) is a better play than any 10 I’ve seen so far this season. A reverse to Khalif Herbin probably will work, as well as a bubble screen with him behind a couple of blockers. A fade pass in the end zone to 6-6 wide receiver Deon Miller would be hard to stop. Getting the ball 20 times to a weapon like Zaire Williams behind this offensive line would also help put points on the board. None of those approaches have been used yet. Maybe they are saving all of that for the bowl game.
If so, there won’t be one.