Why winning is more important this year than ever

Click on the photo for my reasoning why it's more important to win this season than any other in the history of Temple football.

Click on the photo for my reasoning why it’s more important to win this season than any other in the history of Temple football.

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43 thoughts on “Why winning is more important this year than ever

  1. This the biggest season in TU football history. If they don’t win, the Board may cut football, which explains the delay in figuring out where the Owls will play when the Linc’s deal ends. They simply don’t want to commit until the season ends and they have some idea whether the program can be successful.

  2. Couldn’t agree more. The team needs to at least be bowl eligible this season, considering worst case it should have been a 4 win team last year, getting to 6 should be the minimum acceptable performance. Otherwise for all of those people who keep talking about 2015 being a “breakout” season with another 4 or less win season this year about all 2015 will be the “lowlights” of a couple of blow-out home losses to PSU and ND.

  3. A few months ago there were a lot of so-called “Temple people” saying the stadium is a “done deal.” Many of them have backed way off that statement. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. I wonder if the administration is really all that committed to football after a 2- or 4- win season again this fall. Rhule was brought in here to win and win he must. No excuses, no blaming the kids, this year. I want to see players like Herbin (slot back, not slot receiver) put in a position to win this year and not a repeat of last year where they forgot their top weapon (Chris Coyer) was even on the roster until the final game of the season.

    • I will never understand your obsession with Coyer. In the Memphis game he scored on blow assignments, he literally just ran straight on one TD with no defender within 10 yards. He lost a lot of his athleticism when he put on weight to move to TE. I lived at UV with him last year and he had a pot belly. Deloatch, if healthy, will make more of an impact at TE than Coyer ever could.

  4. Mike – nothing is ever a done deal when this amount of money is involved. Funding a new stadium is a complex financial arrangement, made even more challenging when the university has very little capital. Best case scenario is Temple remains committed to football and uses the Public, Private, Partnership (P3) model to finance and build a new on-campus stadium. The first step is fielding a winning and entertaining team every year. Only one thing is guaranteed, there will be no step two without step one.

    • another 4-win season and I would feel very queasy about the future of Temple football surviving beyond one or two years if: no stadium announcement or no Linc extension. any announcement of going back to Franklin Field would be an admission that the BOT has given up on football. It would be a damn shame because “winning” Temple football would revitalize the university national image more than anything else at this point. Losing Temple football does nothing for it.

      • Coyer was a unique talent who should have had 15-20 touches a game. He could run with the ball, throw and catch it. It’s one of the great mysteries of last season why Coyer disappeared after the Notre Dame game.

  5. Realistically I expect a 5-6 win season. We should beat DSU, UCONN, Tulsa, and Memphis. Navy, Houston, ECU, and Tulane are all winnable games so in a best case scenario, I could see us winning 7-8 games. The defense will need to have taken a dramatic step forward for that to be even possible though.

  6. Mike, another wild card is the threat that the Five conferences will shut out the other conferences. The commissioner of the SEC has for some time strongly suggested that the five conferences only play each other. With Notre Dame’s affiliation with the ACC it’s a possibility that this could happen. It would be Temple’s luck that they get an on-campus stadium and then have no one to play.

    • John, you are absolutely right about Coyer: elusive enough in open field to get 184 yards running against a good Ohio team; a good enough passer to be named MVP in a bowl game. His talents should have been incorporated into the offense: running, passing and receiving. Instead, he was forgotten. Criminal misuse of a terrific talent.

      • The same “terrific talent” that went undrafted? Come on Mike, he was a horrible QB. And when he switched to TE and added weight, he lost some athleticism. If he was such an elite talent as you always describe, he would have been able to show it on the field. I wish him the best of luck with the Redskins but he must have some sort of blackmail on you with the amount of hype (for no production) you always give him 😉

  7. You don’t have to be drafted to be a great college talent. He only gained weight because they TOLD him to gain weight. Any guy who was a good enough passer to lead a team to a bowl win is a good enough passer in college football. I guess you missed the three great (and I mean great) TD passes the kid threw in the Ohio game. If your buddy Rhule was as good a coach as Coyer was a player, we’d have been 10-2, not 2-10 last year. He was a unique weapon who should have been worked into the game plan as a guy who threw five passes a game, caught five passes a game and had five rushes a game. Instead, we have a guy from Tenn. Chattanooga running our offense. I pray he doesn’t make Khalif Herbin similarly disappear this year, but that’s just what might happen.

    • I know they told him to gain weight, I was simply saying it cost him some of the athleticism he displayed at QB. I made the undrafted referance because you act like he was a Heisman candidate. He was a 51% passer in 2012 and a fumbling machine, he was good enough because our team was built on defense and the run game, which he was apart of. I would rather have our RBs get those 5 runs per game, Anderson or Fitzpatrick get those 5 targets, and PJ throw those 5 passes than Coyer do any of them last year. He was a nice player, but you greatly overestimate his talent level. And why is Rhule my buddy? Just because I dont want to rush to judge someone after one year? I dont know if he will succeed or fail as a coach, but the sample size we have is to small to declare him a failure already.

      • I’d rather have Coyer get the ball 15 times a game than those guys. every time he touched the ball last year something positive happened. I’ll take that percentage over any other Temple player. When it comes to Coyer, I’ll trust the judgment of a former Temple player who played for Wayne Hardin (the greatest college coach of my lifetime), John Belli, over you. Rhule and company had a gold mine–gold–in Coyer and they blew it, period, end of story.

      • You’d rather have Coyer have the ball than PJ or Robbie Anderson??? Ridiculous.

  8. Any word on the owls 2015 recruits thus far?Based on the spartan coverage provided by Philly.com it seems like a rather pedestrian start for Rhule. Don’t worry about all the caveats around it being too soon to rate the class, etc. thanks.

    • Early returns seem mediocre. But that’s what you get for finishing 2-10 last season. So far our best commits are probably Adrienne Talan (safety, also offered by CIncinnati), Ryquell Armstead (RB, also offered by UVA), and Amechie Walker (WR, also offered by N.C. State). But most of the others seemingly had mostly D2 offers only. Mostly commits so far. We need a fast start to the season to hopefully get in the mix with some of the bigger names considering Temple. Luckily the schedule sets up for a possible 4-1 start.

  9. I’m seeing a lot of speculation, not a lot of names committing. Our latest commit we beat out Rhode Island, Duquesne, st. francis of Loretto and Coastal Carolina for … woo-hoo. Err. Make that woo-freaking-hoo. I guess we’re supposed to “trust the coaches.” I heard that for 8 years of Bobby Wallace and I trusted them all the way to 19-90. (err, not really). I love this story:

    http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/colleges/temple/20140718_Temple_zeroing_in_on_Phila__football_talent.html
    you mean, we can’t get a single coach to go “on the record” with comments?
    These are rather general comments that should have a name behind them.

  10. we are a losing football team on the decline, 4-7 in 2012, and 2-10 in 2013. how do you turn around a losing team? probably one of three ways. one, you get a great coach and coaching staff; two, you get better players; or three, you play teams of lesser talent. Which one of the three is Temple doing? Rhule and staff are worse than AG and Daz, the two recruiting classes are in the Bottom 50, and the schedule is getting harder. so what should fans expect? The University is about to get what it deserves for piss poor decision making at the corporate suite level.

    • the really weird thing is that we played teams of lesser talent (Idaho, fordham and Uconn) and lost to all three last year. so you can cross No. 3 off that list. No. 2 got a boost today when Kareem Ali decommitted from Maryland to Temple. I don’t think we have a “great” coach (we have a great guy who is coach) or coaching staff but the coaching staff is directly related to him being a great guy and hiring friends who might not be the best person for the job. Put it this way: we went from having the DC of a national championship team (Chuck Heater) and the QB coach of a national championship team (Scot Loeffler) and the OC of a national championship team (Daz) to the current group. No rational person can say we are better off as a staff.

  11. What a coup getting the Ali kid. He may lead other kids to commit. Hopefully, the Owls have a decent year and he honors the commitment in February. By the way Mike, I give up trying to convince people what a threat Coyer was. People forget that when he was sophomore, the long runs he had against several teams and that but for two fumbles against Rutgers in 2012, TU would have been up by more than ten at half time. I still say that he could have served the same role as Zwinak does at Penn State as a power back. Plus, he could throw the ball and could have been used for half back options. It was a phenomenal waist of talent.

  12. I have to give Matt Rhule and staff credit for getting this kid. as far as coyer, how many teams have a fullback and a te who could throw the ball on 5-10 fakes per game? when he lines up as a TE, have him come around on a reverse and pitch the ball to him and give him the run/throw option. when he lines up as a fullback, just pitch him the ball and have him chuck it downfield. we could have had an innovative offense and instead we just pissed his talents away. I know one thing. If coach Hardin switched Joachim to TE to get Marty Ginestra more playing time at QB, coach Hardin would have figured a way to get Joachim throwing a few passes off fakes. It would have driven defenses nuts.

    • Innovative offense? More like flag football. To call him a “great” college player as you did preciously is laughable. When it comes to Coyer you are just irrational so I agree to disagree.

      As for Kareem Ali, hopefully it is a sign of more upper tier recruits willing to commit. Maybe Ali can have an impact on other recruits like Anthony Davis did last year. I just hope he signs. Keep it up Rhule and co.

      • He was on the Paul Hornung Award watch list so an impartial panel of college football experts called him a great player. It was his misuse by an inexperienced Temple coaching staff that failed to get the most out of his ability. YOU, not me, are irrational about Coyer.

      • I could care less about how Coyer translate to the pros, simply used it as another means to prove the point, You act as if he was benched the entire season. He played! And did nothing all season except the Memphis game where he wasn’t covered and ran straight. He was a horrible QB, when Connor Reilly beats you out that says it all. He also did nothing at TE. To suggest that we should have taken the ball out of PJ’s hands for Coyer to throw or run is foolish. Sure maybe once every few games, that would add a nice wrinkle to the offense, but to the level you guys suggest doesn’t make sense. I’d rather have PJ pass AND run on any play over Coyer. If Reilly was the QB it would be different, but when you have a special player like PJ, you don’t take the ball out of his hands for gimmick plays.

      • Kenny Harper was named to the Doak Walker watch list, does that make him a great player? So many people are put on that list in the preseason it means next to nothing.

      • *The lengthier comment was supposed to be in response to John*

  13. Mike, John – not so sure you are correct about Coyer. If he were such a great talent surely the professional level would have overlooked the Temple coaching staff shortcomings? If Coyer truly had talent he would have landed on special teams playing for somebody on Sunday. Kinda reminds me of a slower Tebow with far less skill and polish……, Current coaching staff must do a far better job of ‘developing’ the bottom 50 classes they continue to recruit. Temple is getting outcoached and out recruited by Pitt, Rutgers, Penn St, and Maryland. The Temple program is far below any of those schools when measured against any set of common criteria. And you can throw in the AAC Texas and Florida schools.

  14. Those saying that because the pros did not think much of Coyer he’s a bust are mixing apples and oranges because the pro game is about pure speed. Look at how many Heisman trophy winners were complete busts in the pros. Did that make them bad college players? The point about Coyer was that the coaches had a weapon that they completely misused on a team that had few weapons. Plus, Coyer played tight end for one season. Why would the pros be interested in an inexperienced tight end who mostly blocked? Coyer should have had 15 touches a game especially against Fordham and Idaho, teams that were grossly undersized.

  15. Twenty four points against Idaho screams lack of innovation on the Temple offense and a poorly schemed offensive game plan. Temple had enough weapons to score 50 points on that team. You were “embarrassed” to lose to Fordham and had two weeks to get ready for Idaho and came up with that crap? Give me a break.

    • Mike, stop trying to argue with imbeciles.

      Rhule will show what a complete jackass of a coach he is by week 4.

      • I hope not, Jay, but I would not be surprised. A lot of the mistakes he made cannot be quickly dismissed by the “I’m not judging him on his first year” mantra of the MRAs.

      • I love the notion that because people don’t instantly damn Rhule as a failure you are immediately a “MRA”. It’s called not rushing to judgement and/or having a little patience.

  16. A serious question- you’ve mentioned several times that Coyer and Zaire Williams were underused last year. By extension that also must mean some other players were overused. Who do you think was getting the ball more than they should have last season?

    • good question. my feeling was that we should have spread the ball around more, put the ball in a shell game where the defense did not know it would be, not necessarily taking it out of one guy’s hand to give it to another. with a 28-7 lead against one of the league’s worst run defense and best quarterbacks, you’ve GOT to be smart enough to give the ball to Zaire Williams. against the worst run defense in FBS football, you can’t throw 100 50-yard bombs … got to give Idaho steady diet of Kenny and Zaire. Against a 247-pound DL in Fordham, Zaire gets the ball 25 times like the Division II running back who the next week got 297 yards against Fordham … and so on and so forth … not a question of taking it out of anybody’s hands, just realizing who your opponent is and what their weaknesses are.

  17. A problem I see with many coaches, new ones especially, is a tendency to call plays to have people say, what a great call that was, instead of calling simple plays that work. For example, I’ve sen Rhule under Golden and again last year call three or four running plays that each got five or more yards. Instead of continuing with what works, he then would throw a bomb, which did not work and put the Owls in a second and long. I can only attribute that to a wish to have people say what a great call the coach made. Instead of realizing that greatness is measured by wins and not calls coaches often fool themselves. The coaching staff last season did get better as the season progressed. At Rutgers, for example, the Owls ran down Rutgers’ throat at the end of the game but they were thwarted when Rhule and Satterfield decided to get cute (the look what a clever coach syndrome again) by trying to get six inches by handing the ball off six yards deep instead of running a boring QB sneak.

    • good analysis, john. one last year’s big foibles was it looked as if we never scouted an opponent. we wanted to run our plays and not plays designed to attack the weakness of our opponents. hopefully, that improves this year. I will give Matt credit for going with (and converting) two QB sneaks from fourth and a yard against UConn. Maybe they are also reevaluating the way they game plan, too, and that can only be a good sign.

      • Mike, you never answered if you viewed Kenny Harper as a “great” player because he is on the Doak Walker watch list? Using your logic he must be right?

  18. Difference between the two lists is that Coyer led the Paul Hornung voting for the first six weeks of the year. I don’t think Kenny will come close. Then he disappeared from the offense until the final game. Harper never ran for 184 yards in a single game, like Coyer did, and never passed for three touchdowns in a single game, like Coyer did, and never won a bowl game MVP, like Coyer did and was never a qb of a 9-win Temple team, like Coyer was. Other than that, they are equal.

    • But Harper never:
      1.) Got benched for O’Reilly
      2.) Was forced to change positions because he was a horrible quarterback
      3.) Disappeared for an entire season

      Notice how your main ponts are SINGLE games, not stretches of a season. Coyer wasn’t the reason we won 9 games, our defense and Bernard Pierce was and his 27 TDs were.

      Harper AND Coyer are nice players, nothing more nothing less.

  19. and Coyer can pass but Kenny cannot. Got to work fake passes in every now and then for guys who can throw. I suggested the Jalen Fitzpatrick end-around pass about 10 times on this blog in each of the last two years. Daz used it for me and got a first down (to, err, Coyer) against Louisville 2 years ago and Matt used it for me last year and got a 93-yard touchdown at SMU. These plays can be used more than once a year. Heck, Bruce scored on 2 flea-flickers in the same game. You can pound your head against the wall with “regular” offense or you can be creative with the special talents of your players. Fitzy can throw. Got to do it once a game, not once a year.

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