Throwback Thursday: Garden State Bowl

Since there’s no opponent this week, thought the Throwback Thursday segment this week would be the Garden State Bowl.

There were a few things to take from that bowl:

  • Great coaching led directly to Temple’s win. Temple coach Wayne Hardin likes to tell the story of the exchange of films with the California team. He gave them only a couple of Temple game films and those were the games that Temple could afford to be very vanilla and run the basic stuff. Due to Hardin’s contacts in California, he was able to get not only the films Cal exchanged but the entire season of Cal film. He noticed that the linebackers on Cal tipped their hand when they would blitz and had quarterback Brian Broomell fake that way and throw the other. Those plays led to a 21-0 Temple lead before Cal could figure out that Hardin had them figured out.
  • Cal’s trash-talking served as a motivating factor for Temple. Cal coach Roger Theder said “Temple doesn’t play opponents as tough as we do” and that hissed the Owls off. Cal had five losses that year, but the 11-point loss to Temple was its worst. Probably not a coincidence.
  • It was cold, but probably not as cold as the fans remembered. I saved my game notes (the printed kind, given out in the press box) and it said: “Temperature at kickoff: 40 degrees.” Tried to find them on the internet but could only find this veiled reference to the game in a Cal band blog about the temperatures being several degrees above freezing but not feeling that way.
  • Yes, and one of the loudest laughs that day was when they showed the final score on the Jumbotron and had a graphic cartoon visual of an Owl taking a dump on the head of a Bear. Certainly beats the misspelled “CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NEW MEXICO BOWL CAMPIONS” that appeared on the scoreboard in Albuquerque. That  Owl/Bear graphic pretty much summed up a wonderful afternoon.
  • The Temple fans were great. There were 55,874 in attendance and only about 500 or so were rooting for Cal. It was that day I was convinced that a consistent winning and well-coached Temple program against big-time competition could put enough fannies in the seats to thrive. Even though Rutgers, essentially a home team, played in the first GSB, the 55K Temple drew remains an all-time bowl record crowd in New Jersey.
  •  The Cal band performance is below and they even play a  current Temple Diamond Marching Band favorite:

By the way, the 1979 Temple team would have blown out the 2010 Temple team (which, ironically, did not make a bowl but should have).


12 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday: Garden State Bowl

  1. These are the kind of post I did not like. We are reading about a bowl game that occurred 35 years ago. It’s like a listening to the Bryan Adams song “Summer of 69.” However, this occurred in 79. Discussing a bowl win that occurred 35 years ago will not be motivation enough to get fans in the stands and recruits in the locker room. I would like to hear more about the 2014 Temple Owls than a bowl team from 35 years ago. You know it better than anyone Mike, it’s all about “what have you done for me lately.”

    • throwback thursday

      • I also remember the game. Didn’t Hardin also notice how the Cal line reacted to pulling offiensive lineman, and when our offensive linemen pulled we ran straight up the middle where no defenders were for nice gains? I do like Throwback Thursdays. They bring back memories for us old fans and hopefully give newer fans a glimpse of the days when we were a respected football team.

  2. thanks, phil. I suggest jlpg not check the blog each Thursday from this point hence. 🙂 going to try to fit a theme in every Thursday on the upcoming opponent, although del. state will be a tough one next Thursday.

    • .. and, by the way, the hardin game overall game plan was genius that day (as most days) and that offensive lineman story was part of a story Mike Kern did about the GSB on the eve of the EBB. I have a feeling Hardin if he was coaching the Owls on Saturday would have had his best defender beat the crap out of Keenan Reynolds on Saturday. We gave a clinic in how not to defend the option. Vince Hoch is probably turning over in his grave.

  3. Temple needs to be 4-1 going into the game at Houston. piss poor coaching will be the reason for anything less. great coaching and we’ll be 5-1 going into the UCF game in Orlando

    • yes, a loss to Uconn would be pretty hard to explain. Uconn needed a late punt return to be freaking Stony Brook, 19-16. If Temple isn’t at least 10x better than Stony Brook, something is seriously wrong and it will not be the kids. Temple’s recruiting is light years ahead of a place like SB, so the talent is there to blow the doors off Uconn. It’s up to the coaches to do it.

      • Agree with both kj and Mike on this one. If this team comes out of September 2-2, don’t even want to contemplate a loss to Delaware State, then the is a big problem with the coaching. From what I’ve seen and heard of Uconn, my neighbors son is a freshman on the Huskies, it should be no contest. Team has been described as slow, not tops when it comes to conditioning and playing a lot of young players. Sound like Diaco is doing what Rhule did last year to find out what he has. On top of that Uconn lost their top QB, Cochrane, due to concussions.
        Great article today and I rememvber it sure seemed a lot colder than 40 at kickoff.

  4. Thank you for the throw back memory. Broad street wrecking crew (benson, Garza, Collins, Stinger and Prohaska) knocked them down and moved them out.

  5. While Hardin and Hoch surely were good coaches, they had difficulty with Villanova’s wishbone in 1976 and 1980, years when TU lost.

    The defense simply did not execute last Saturday, The nose tackle was a non-factor as evidenced by the many successful quick hitters. Linebackers had QB or pitch and because the nose tackle was beaten so many times,they began cheating toward the middle, thereby opening up lanes. Agree that when a team uses its QB like Navy, the defense has to hit him every play.

    Don’t overlook UConn which showed some talent against BYU, which blew out Texas last Saturday. Owls cannot sleep against any opponent.

    • the fact that they are still looking for a feature tailback at this stage shows they did not do a good job evaluating personnel in the summer. that’s when you need to get that stuff done, not during the season. I would put Khalif Herbin back there and give him a few handoffs like Al Golden did with Matty Brown in 2009. I have a strong feeling Khalif would nail down the job like Matty did.

  6. I remember being surprised and at once thrilled in the first half as the Owls blew Cal off the field. But don’t forget that things got much tighter in the second half as Cal made a comeback and Temple scored only one more TD. It was enough to win the game, obviously, but it was a bit nerve wracking none-the-less. And yes, it may have been 35 years ago and even a bit irrelevant for today’s younger fans, but it was one of few true highlights in Temple football history. It also provides a segue for reminiscing for us older alums and fans. So keep ’em coming Mike, its fun. As for this season, the coaching is still a question mark. If we don’t blow Del St. (one game at a time) off the field, it could be another disappointing season.

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