The Temple Spin Zone

Click here to get into the Temple Spin Zone. It is a lot like the old Twilight Zone, with a little less reality.

Click here to get into the Temple Spin Zone. It is a lot like the old Twilight Zone, with a little less reality. Not surprisingly, the show opens with Sean Padden’s microphone turned off. If you can lip read, it’s a great show.

Fox News has its Bill O’Reilly No-Spin Zone and Temple football will have its spin zone on Wednesday morning at 7 a.m. on National Signing Day.

It is considered a major no-no in the journalism business to call a subject you regularly cover by his  first name. Par for the course or the MRAs at Owlscoop.com, though.

It is considered a major no-no in the journalism business to call a subject you regularly cover by his first name. Par for the course for the MRAs at Owlscoop.com, though.

No one can say how the Owls’ coaching staff will spin it, but pretty much everyone agrees that there will be a spin involved. There can be no other conclusion based on the way the Owls handled their other recruiting classes. The theme of past signing days I attended was Al Golden saying we were No. 1 in the MAC by all objective analysis and Temple’s goal is to be No. 1 in everything, recruiting, workouts, gameday, etc. Instead, this will be one of the lowest-ranked recruiting classes in recent years, with Temple ranked No. 102 in the country by one of the two major recruiting websites. Sixth in the AAC by one, eighth–behind Mensa-level Navy–by another.

It came down to the wire.

It came down to the wire.

I do not know how to spin that, but I guess that Temple will bring up all of the examples of two-star guys who came to 10th and Diamond and made it to the NFL. For every one of those guys, though, Al Golden was able to get a guy heavily recruited by a BCS team like Boston College (Kee-Ayre Griffin) or Pitt (Adrian Robinson) who really made a contribution at Temple.

Bernard Pierce, who I called “The Franchise” for his three years here, was a two-star who Golden was able to stash away at a reform school (Glen Mills). This is the way you build winning teams: Get five guys who the big boys want, stash a couple of guys away, and then do a tremendous job watching the film.

That’s what Golden did.

The spin tomorrow will probably be “we watched the film, trust us.”  That’s OK, too, if Temple is able to land T.J. Simmons of Lakeland (Fla.) and Adrienne Talan, a linebacker who is between Nebraska and Temple. I would love to get the Canadian defensive end, Mathieu Bettswho is between Temple and Purdue. If Rhule is able to pull off those three, the spin becomes easier to swallow. Love the legacy recruit, Kareem Ali. Jr., and the kid he was able to bring with him, Greg Webb. I believe both of those guys could earn starting jobs next season. That would upgrade the talent level of a team which already returns 20 starters and set the minimum bar for Rhule wins at eight. A healthy Simmons following a fullback, say Rob Dvoracek, could do some serious damage against Penn State. Simmons following last year’s offensive line without a lead blocker like Dvoracek would not nearly be as effective. Remember, Pierce, Matty Brown and Montel Harris followed great  blocking fullbacks  through the hole and enabled Temple to set up an effective passing  game.  Don’t try to tell that to Rhule, though, who thinks his “process”  of no running game, no pass protection and no wide receiver separation can prevail against any opponent. There’s a lot of spin in that gameday coaching process, too.

This is not a Golden class, though. At best, it is a Silver one, maybe a Bronze. I’d rather have the top-rated class the AAC, like Golden had in the MAC for three-straight years. If Simmons is 100 percent—and that’s a big if—he could be better than Bernard Pierce. Having his announcement rescheduled for 7 a.m. is a big positive for Temple, which does not currently have a franchise running back on the roster.

Keep your fingers crossed and set the alarm for 6:55.

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18 thoughts on “The Temple Spin Zone

  1. Golden’s #1 MAC class produced exactly zero wins against MAC teams with a winning record. I remember not too long ago on this site there were a lot of complaints that Temple never signed anybody who had others offers from Power 5 schools. This class will have a lot of them, maybe even a shout out on ESPNU by Simmons.

    I don’t think it matters what the rankings are, give me W’s on Saturday.

  2. For a blog that claims it will never criticize “the kids” would it hurt you for at least one day to just be positive and celebrate the incoming freshmen? Trust me, none of them chose to label themselves “two-star”. And just because a kid is recruited by Nebraska doesn’t mean he’s a better prospect than someone recruited by West Alabama.

  3. Rivals (considered premier football recruiting service) has class is ranked #73 overall, #65 in average ranking (since we are taking fewer players this class). Ahead of schools like Syracuse, Cincy, Purdue, and many others. #3 in average stars in the AAC

  4. Rhule better be wearing a jet pack today….

    Seriously though excited to see who fills our ranks!

  5. Signing Day. I’m still not understanding the whole Jet Pack tweet. Is our HC buying one with his considerable compensation?

  6. Mike, don;t think you are ever going to see a fullback on a regular basis as part of this offense. That being said if Simmons does turn out to be a “franchise” back I at least like to see the offense go to the pistol formation as the primary set. While not having a lead blocker does help the running game by moving the handoffs several yards closer to the line of scrimmage so a guy like Simmins is hitting the hole full speed and has cut back lanes, gets the ball quicker to Walker on passing plays which should help cut down on the pressure and takes better advantage of his running ability. Plus it’s a lot more versatile for the running game than the spread shotgun that the offense operated out for most of last season.

    • we need to establish a running game and I would try anything but the process we used last year. the Dallas Cowboys’ offensive line is not going to suddenly show up on campus.

  7. Walker is too short to operate under center, limiting what we can do with a FB. The jet pack comment was part of a recruiting pitch to a recruit, nothing more. It also worked

  8. Wow Mike you really got the lemmings on Owlscoop worked up, really circling the wagons. But the folks over there never let me down with their ludicrous comments, now Rhule is working miracles with as one of the cult says, “no stadium and the worst facilities in the conference” They are over the top!!

  9. Also, what are they smoking, all this talk about all the offers Rhule has on the table and the admin needs to extend his contract asap???? We are talking about a coach with a 8-16 record in a second tier conference!!!!!

    • remember, they extended 4-year vacation’s contract to 8 and that was a disaster. let’s decide the extention on wins and losses, not recruiting classes. He would have to win his first 8 games next season to become a mediocre (.500) coach.

      • Can’t disagree with that, but then again I’m not looking at Rhule as Knute Rockne, Pop Warner, Nick Saban, et.al. all rolled into one. How else do you explain several posts indicating that the admin needs to extend “the great one” now because big time P5 schools are all circling to hire him away ASAP!!!!!

  10. Rhule is what his record says he is, 8-16 in a second tier conference with two consecutive recruiting classes ranked in the lower half in all college football. how can anyone be proud of those facts?

    MRA and Rhule haters can argue all day long, arguments will not change the documented history of the last two years. and the reality is he will be a sub .500 coach after three years on the job….,

    he is what his record says he is, a sub-.500 coach in a second tier conference

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