The one-year anniversary of Daz quitting

Say what you will about Daz, this ice cold water must have felt nice while listening to the team sing "T for Temple U" in New Mexico.

Say what you will about Daz, this ice cold water must have felt nice while listening to the team sing “T for Temple U” in New Mexico.

When I worked in the sports department of the Doylestown Intelligencer, one of my colleagues, a guy I will call Adam (because that’s his name)  was a New York Mets’ fan.

He called Lenny Dykstra one nickname (Nails), I called him another (The Dude).

Amazing the same guy could be known in two large Eastern cities by two completely different nicknames.


Click on the photo for The Philadelphia Metro’s story on Steve Addazio quitting, which appeared in the Dec. 4, 2012, edition.

I thought about that while reading the mostly positive reviews of what Steve Addazio has done at Boston College this season. Up there, he’s known by a nickname no one called him here (The Dazzler) while, down here, he was simply known as Daz. Nobody calls him Daz up there, just The Dazzler.

Today is the one-year anniversary of Steve Addazio quitting from his position as head football coach at Temple University.

I remember exactly where I was when I heard the news, in my car and headed to the gym (Abington LA Fitness, former Temple recruit Brandon Peoples knows it well). I was passing the iconic Rydal Train Station on Susquehanna Avenue when Harry Donahue came on the  KYW air at 5:45  p.m. with “breaking news in the sports world,”  and following that up with the tease, “There has been a coaching change at Temple.”

In between the long pause between that sentence and the next, I thought for once in my life my university had the balls to fire someone because he followed an 8-4 regular season with a 4-7 one.

Instead, I heard this: “Steve Addazio has resigned as the head football coach to take the same job at Boston College.”

The Rydal Train Station.

The Rydal Train Station.

That was mildly amusing because I never heard of a school hiring a guy coming off a 4-7 season. (Unfortunately, I DID hear of a uni hiring a guy coming off an 0-11 season and it was MY university and that turned out to be an unmitigated disaster circa 1989.)

Whatever the reason, I pounded the steering wheel and started cheering out loud because I knew  Temple would go nowhere with this stubborn man in charge. I thought now the university could hire someone with a winning head-coaching FBS pedigree after years of rolling the dice with unproven assistant coaches. I attended the final press conference a week earlier at Temple where Addazio uttered the famous line “the season starts Monday and it won’t be a box of chocolates for those guys” at Edberg-Olson Hall. “We have to run the football for 200 yards a game, that’s something we have to do,” Daz said.

I left that press conference thinking Daz doesn’t get it and probably never will.

Monday came and Daz went, becoming  The Dazzler, and the rest was history.

Say what you will about Daz, he probably would have beaten Fordham and Idaho by pretty substantial scores because his philosophy of running the ball on first and second downs almost to the point of exclusivity would have probably netted him first downs against those two horrible run defenses before even getting to a third down. He would have saved the uni from the embarrassment of two of five worst losses in its  history. Still, that philosophy doesn’t lend itself to multiple winning seasons in a major conference so it is overall good that he is gone.

I got to know Daz a little bit and I liked him a lot as someone to shoot the breeze with. I was in New York City for the June 12th gathering of Temple alumni and Daz in 2012 and talked with Daz. He was brutally candid. He was talking about that he “had it up to here” with a Temple player (a favorite of mine) and that he was “this close” to kicking him off the team. When the two guys I was with reminded him I write the TFF blog, Daz said, “Mike, please don’t print this.” I didn’t. I still won’t print the name (those kind of settings should be off-the-record anyway), but the guy was never kicked off the team and had a great senior year, something that pleased both me and Daz.

Got to give him credit for turning a 2-10 team into a 7-5 one, while his successor turned a 4-7 team into a 2-10 one.

Whether or not that’s an omen of things to come won’t be known until this day a year from now.

Meanwhile, Daz’s big advertising campaign up there this year is “Be a Dude.” Sounds better than “Be a Nails” but not as good as “Temple TUFF.”


10 thoughts on “The one-year anniversary of Daz quitting

  1. Some preseason prognosticators predicted that if BC lost to Villanova they could easily go 0-12. They either misjudged the level of talent at BC or Daz did a great job. I believe the answer rests somewhere in the middle especially after daz’s team blew Saturday game against Syracuse. By the way, Ron Vanderlinden was just let go by PSU. Temple would do well considering hiring him especially given that he has head coaching experience.

  2. Plenty of good DCs out there to pick and choose for Matt Rhule: Ron Vanderlinden, Tom Bradley, Ron English and Nick Rapone. Any one of those guys would do a substantially better job than Snow but it is my position (until I see otherwise) that Matt Rhule is “too nice a guy” to fire a staff member. When Greg Schiano was at Rutgers, he let one staff member (usually a coordinator) go every year. You’ve got to be cut-throat in this business and sometimes have to fire friends. I don’t think Rhule has the stomach for that.

  3. I saw that with Vanderlinden as well and as anyone who has read my posts knows I really have doubts about Phil Snow, this isn’t 1996 in the PAC-10.
    Even if Snow isn’t going anywhere I still think i would be worthwhile to explore Vanderlinden’s interest. Bring him on in the same position he had under Tom Bradley, asst. DC and LB coach. I can only speak to what is in the staff bios but it sounds like Mike Siravo was a pretty good secondary coach at BC. Move him to that position here. With an LB coach the caliber of Vanderlinden and the talent on this team, LB could become a real force for this defense going forward. Your right MIke, Schiano constantly assessed his staff every year and either let a staff member go on a regular basis or shifted their responsibilities. I also agree with John that having a member of the staff with FBS HC experience can only help Rhule mature as a HC.

  4. That is a great point. the only guy on the staff with football head coaching experience is Ed Foley and he was not that good even as Fordham head coach. At least if Rhule starts off 0-6 again with RV on the staff, you can promote RV to interim head coach and then pick a big-time guy at the end of the season. Now Rhule has Satterfield and Snow, two guys not qualified to be a head coach anywhere. Wonder if he set it up that way for his own job security.

  5. How about a guy who stepped into a messy sutuation at USC and turned things around, Why not Ed Orgeron?

  6. Uh, no. I’d give Matt Rhule one more year. Ed may have been a one-year wonder with great recruits. As for Temple’s NEXT hire, I’d like it to be a guy who has had multiple winning seasons as a HEAD coach on the same FBS level Temple plays at and a guy who is on the rise, not the decline. Wayne Hardin was such a hire back in 1971. In 2015, if need be (and I hope it’s not needed), we need a 2015 version of Wayne Hardin, who was 42 years old when he took the Temple job and had Navy ranked in the top 3 twice.

    • Yep, Coach O was a terrible head coach at Ole Miss despite having recruiting success. Also after coaching USC so well if he came here and won he would likely be offered a job at a higher profile program.

      I would even be fine with an FCS head coach provided they were a proven they were from one of the more prominent programs at that level. I think if we gave that guy an opportunity he wouldn’t just run the moment he got a better offer.

      • At some point, Matt Rhule is going to have to win games on a fairly consistent basis. When Sept. 1 comes around, we will have reached that point. Can’t wait on him for 2015. He’s going to have to win now.

  7. I guess Todd McNair is not a viable candidate for HC next year. Todd should have just bit the bullet, took his suspension quietly, and jumped back into coaching like some other scapegoats. He filed a a lawsuit against the NCAA, so he is up against a powerful organization with lost of bodies to hide.

  8. I believe the Hawk is dead.

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