Who is Here and Who is Not?

Jihaad Pretlow will not be roaming he secondary for the Owls next season.

Jihaad Pretlow will not be roaming he secondary for the Owls next season.

Every spring practice season, only the most ardent of Temple fans frequently updated rosters on Owlsports.com trying to cross both fingers while holding a rabbit’s foot.

The goal, of course, is hoping that “nobody good” has left the team. I do not know about you, but I want the money for my rabbit’s foot back.

Jacob Quinn will be leading the way for a Delaware back this fall, not an Owl like Zaire Williams (23) in this 2013 game at SMU.

Jacob Quinn will be leading the way for a Delaware back this fall, not an Owl like Zaire Williams (23) in this 2013 game at SMU.

I didn’t need to open the roster to find out that the team’s best offensive lineman, Dion Dawkins, might be facing some legal problems after being involved in an off-campus fight. I’m always one for “innocent until proven guilty” and the day Jim Gardner led Action News that “a Temple football player had been involved in an alleged rape” I dashed off an email to Gardner asking that if the player got exonerated to please lead off Action News with that exoneration. He later was exonerated and Action News underplayed that development as much as it overplayed the player’s arrest.

Hopefully, Dawkins will have the same fate but another offensive line starter (at least in the final game at Tulane), Jacob Quinn, has decided to eschew his final year of eligibility and go home to Delaware to play for the Blue Hens. He will be eligible immediately. Buddy Brown, who came to the school as a highly recruited linebacker, “retired” from football.

Another guy not here, Jihaad Pretlow, one of the team’s best defensive backs transferred out of school.

All good guys and players, unfortunately. Someday  I’d like to open up the roster and see the only news is that the fifth string quarterback or the fourth-team offensive guard leave the team but that never seems to happen at Temple.

That’s the bad news.

The good news is that 100 or so players do remain.

Unfortunately, college age kids being what they are, this kind of thing happens everywhere but it’s a two-steps-forward-one-step-back kind of thing with the Owls. An offensive line that already was a weakness became weakened in two areas and there are only so many good players to go around. The defensive backfield and linebacking corps lost some depth.

How this impacts Temple won’t be known this spring. Heck, it will not be known by Cherry and White Day. The Owls will have to wait until the Penn State game for that answer.

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36 thoughts on “Who is Here and Who is Not?

  1. Why did Pretlow leave? Are the defections a sign that the coach is not who some people think he is?

  2. so funny. any chance to throw a jab at Rhule right. “are the defections the sign that the coach is not who some people think he is?” U did read the article right? “College kids being who they are this kind of thing happens everywhere”. but lets not let a common thing that happens everywhere stop us from getting a ding in at Rhule expense. its getting kind of sad guys.

    but back to what really matters…..our team. u don’t like to lose a player like Pretlow but we have depth in the secondary. Sad news about Brown and his knees. i was excited when he signed with us outta Jersey. hopeful this Dawkins mess will get resolved.

    • I think we have a lot of depth on defense. The OL concerned me before the losses. They say “next man up” but you only have so many men in that line. Dawkins is a man.

    • I’ll stick with my question. Why are two kids who start suddenly leaving and does it have anything to do with the head coach? If it does, and the players have a legitimate beef, it’s a valid question given the fragile nature of this team and the slim margin separating success from failure.

  3. the OL concerns you? is there anything about the entire offense that is not a cause for concern? WR, OL, QB, RB, etc? Let’s start with WR. Could any of our WRs or RBs start for UCF, Cincy, PSU, Memphis, ECU, etc? the OL is a mess, and PJ has been in an out-of-body experience for the last 15 months….,

    • Yes, all correct points.

      Nobody would start on those teams.

      3rd and 4th String for PSU, Cincy.

      2nd string for the others.

      PJ is a sitting duck back there without a FB and crappy, thin
      O-line.

      But anyone can see that, unless you were a novice at Football (JD) or were being blackmailed by Rhule, lol.

      • Well i guess according to u with the horrible talent we have Rhule should have won Coach of the Year by taking a team this bad to a 6-6 record. makes sense to me.

  4. “the fragile nature of this team”?. i follow almost all the players on twitter and i have never seen a tight knit group who love each other and their coach. i see a team that supports each other. thats why we have a lot of guys from the same high schools bcuz they have bonded with one another. a team that at the start of every 4th quarter last year all stood hand to hand on the sideline in unison. this team may have some issues but unity aint one of them. and if u wanna call Pretlow & Quinn “starters?” then thats your prerogative.

    and to answer KJ questions
    our RBs who could start for UCF, Cincy, PSU, ECU, etc
    The Simmons kid who was a 4 star recruit. Jabo Lee who was a Tennessee recruit. Zaire Williams or Jahad Thomas could start for any of those programs.

    as for WRs i would say Adonis Jennings and Keith Kirkwood maybe DeLoatch although we don’t know how any of the freshman or redshirt freshmen will turn out.

    but we do have some precedence about Rhule strategy. in 2013 the defense was one of the worst i ever seen. Rhule put all his focus into improving the defense. a lot of folks on this site was calling for Snow head. Rhule stayed wit Snow and last year the defense turned it around. so hopefully Rhule will do the same thing with the offense this season.

    • praying that you, the other JD, are right….., just so tired of being a graduate of a university with an underachieving athletic program

  5. I’m going to set the record straight about my son Jihaad Pretlow. He is still enrolled at Temple University. He is in great academic standing (will be able to graduate in 3 years) He has been given the go ahead to visit other schools. No decision has been made. We are actively visiting other schools. His decision to leave is because of he wanted play Slot Receiver (which was his 1st option in the beginning)
    here he is in High School:

    http://www.hudl.com/athlete/1228067/jihaad-pretlow

    TU needed help in the defensive backfield. So he sacrificed for the team. He and Rhule also had a difference of opinion about him getting an internship. At this point no bad blood is between Rhule and my family. We wish him and Temple the best of luck. PJ and Jahad Thomas are like my Nephews, so I will still root hard for them.

    • Thanks, Malik. Hell, he would be the best slot receiver we have. Love to see him and Nate L. Smith moved to the offensive side of the ball. The fact that all of last year’s recruits could not make an impact as a WR on last year’s team makes me wonder about the talent evaluating ability of the staff. All over the country true freshman were making plays at the WR position. Not at Temple.

    • Wish him all the best. I watched his high-lite film when he signed and was really impressed with his running skills. Was surprised when he wasn’t used on offense and to return punts and kicks especially given how poor those units were last season. It made no sense that Rhule wasn’t trying other kids in those roles given the poor results. On top of that, what would it have hurt to try others at wide receiver last season. Tavon Young clearly was one of the best open field runners they had, as shown by what he did after interceptions. Clearly, someone on the coaching staff lacks vision and an ability to think outside the box. Look how they wasted Coyer’s talent the previous year. Coach Harden didn’t care what a guy’s position was, only whether or not he could help the team. Look at his use of Brian Broomel as a d-back his freshman season as an example. It would be a great loss to lose this kid without at least giving him a shot on offense.

      • Loved the way coach Hardin used the talents of his players. After watching us fair catch punt returns all last season and knowing we had guys who could take it to the house (Nate L. Smith, Pretlow, etc.), I have my doubts about this coach.

      • Are you seriously recommending we take our biggest playmaker in the secondary and place him as a wide receiver? What will be the excuse when the secondary took a step back? It was very selfless of Jihaad to play in the secondary instead of his goal as a wide reciever. i do think it benefited both the school and Jihaad as it gave him time on the field. I wish him nothing but the best of luck wherever he ends up.

        You stance on how Coach Hardin didn’t care what a guy’s position was, only whether or not he could help the team seems to contradict your complaint aobut Coyer being moved to Tight end. Rhule clearly wanted Coyer on the field and thought he could help there since as a passer he didnt fit the new offensive scheme. Most people were not complaining by the end of the season since PJ was having a fantastic freshman year. Wouldnt you have rather had PJ and Coyer on the field at the same time?

  6. Mike, just a comment on your stadium poll. You know I am not one to complain about anything, but your choices are a little misleading. I am sure we will hear about the stadium, but what we will probably hear is we won’t have one. I guess sometimes I am a little pessimistic, but then I have been an owl fan for about 50 years.

    • I don’t think we will ever hear about it. I just hope they re-up with Lurie. He has us by the gonads because Chester and FF is a death sentence for this program that will make SMU’s 1987 death sentence sound like a reprieve.

  7. that’s the problem. the stadium supporters keep saying “leave it at that” rather than mentioning specific times and dates for an announcement. the last time (only time) I heard a specific date (March 1) it came and passed. The time is now, not next year or two years from now. Can’t get the stadium built in time to leave the Linc if a shovel doesn’t go into the ground this year.

    • Maybe it is because we are not allowed to be specific about it and should not even mention it in the first place. What you are asking for would put the people with knowledge of the situation in a position that could negatively effect their careers.

  8. anon: Didn’t say he had to play receiver exclusively. Could have used him here and there like Michigan used Woodson and Ariens used Rienstra on defense for example. My point is that this coaching staff has no imagination. For example, during a practice last season Deloach was “punished” and made to play defense. He had seven sacks. Why couldn’t he have been used during a game? Take the Memphis or Cincy games where it was clear that they were going to pass. When talent is scarce, anything goes. Also, don’t tell me that Tayvon couldn’t have been more successful returning punts than Christopher, who had no first step.

    • that’s exactly the story Marcus Smith told how he got to be a starting DE at Louisville. Recruited to be a QB, Charlie Strong tried him out at DE one practice and became a starter there. By all accounts, Deloatch’s first practice at DE was even more spectacular at Temple but we move him back to WR. That’s why Strong is making $5 million per and Rhule will be on the unemployment line in 3 years. He can save himself by doing sound football things like evaluating talent, using a fullback and getting some athletes with a first step to take back punts but I think he’s so enamored with “the process” he’s going to go down with it.

      • Pathetic, isn’t it.

        When past evidence is there that those changes would work on this team.

        As a Penn Stater who roots for Temple, I see a lot of VANILLA JOE in him.

        Boring Strategist who relied on talent to beat up the “little sisters of the poor”.

        Thats the Penn State Story from 1950-2011.

        I still root for Penn State but I’m from Philly and my parents went to Temple. So I root for both.

  9. Respectfully, I don’t see where this kid can be an effective slot receiver. His highlight showed a majority of running back skills. Not enough to agree with his father. His CB plays validate the Temple coach’s decision to play him at that position. I think the kid just hurt his potential at being an impact player for the team. But again, its not what the position the kid wanted to play. Wish him well where ever he decides to continue his education.

  10. we can only hope he gets his act together, which I have serious doubts about. Still shaking my head over the Temple-Penn State game when he puts P.J. in an empty backfield with no RB blocker to cut down a blitzer and, when P.J. throws 3 interceptions, he throws the kid under the bus by saying he should have made better decisions. HE DIDN’T HAVE TIME TO MAKE ONE DECISION, let alone better ones. P.J. will be fine once he gets the necessary protections. That’s the job of the coaches, not P.J.

    • Roll outs, draws, screens, and play action; not quick outs to guys who can’t make the first defender miss.

      • so many great examples of thinking outside the box right there. whatever happened to that little 5-yard roll out pass to the TE we used to perfection at Maryland? Thompson would be great with that play, just like Erod was. I guess Satterfield didn’t have that in the playbook at Tennessee-Chattanooga.

  11. Rhule is an idiot. Rhule will be in the unemployment line in 3 years. We have an imbecile as a leader. Man u guys have your cards all in one deck. U better hope y’all r correct in your assessment of Rhule bcuz if he turns this program around i will be here to remind everybody of their disdain for Rhule.

    And i don’t wanna hear “well he took my advice” or “he doing it this way now”. if he turns this program around will u guys be MEN and say hey maybe i was wrong about this guy?

    im not sure about the answer to that question bcuz y’all seemed to have thrown y’all cards in already. after the Vandy beat down last year this site didn’t seemed to give any credit to Rhule. the feeling i got from this site was more well maybe its a down year for Vandy. The lightning was a factor. Vandy wasn’t prepared. after we beat ECU it was more like well ECU didn’t handle the rain well. they weren’t prepared to play in that type of weather. Never any kind of props to Rhule and his staff. but after a Temple loss on this site…..wow Rhule gets all the blame. kinda funny to me.

    i’m trying to figure out this immense disdain for Rhule that this site has. i understand that some of u thought he should never had gotten the job. myself i didn’t feel any kind of way about it. they named him our coach so i will ride with him until he proves me wrong. like a lot of u i was horrified at the 2-10 season. but i put it in some perspective. a team with mostly freshman/sophomores going into a superior league. it seems like that 2-10 season cemented a lot of your opinions on Rhule. y’all never will forgive him for losing to Fordham or Idaho which i understand.

    But i remember something the Coach and the team said the day after the 2-10 ended. “Never again”. the team was in the weight room the day after the season ended. Rhule promised to fix the defense. last season i seen improvement. the team that lost to Idaho/Fordham smashed this season equivalent Del St. the defense improved. the team was bowl eligible if it wasn’t for an incompetent commish. but to a lot of u guys he can never do anything right.

    Was Temple supposed to go from the MAC to the AAC and become a juggernaut overnight? i do believe starting this season we will start becoming a force in the conference. them freshman/sophomores from the 2-10 season r now junior/seniors. Rhule seems to be recruited players we never got. i know folks hate this word but its a process. next season is a crucial season. I’m looking for continued growth and improvement.

    if somebody didn’t really follow the program and just read this website they would be thinking Temple football is dead and the program will be shut down in 2 years. Simply nonsense.

    • no coach with any kind of gameday ability ever loses to Fordham and Idaho with Temple talent. I mean, Daz didn’t do the program any favors but there was PLENTY of talent left to hammer both those teams 55-0 (like Army did to Fordham 2 years prior; yes, the same army program daz hung 63 on the next season). Huge red flags. The deer-in-the-headlights coach didn’t improve much in getting hammered by Houston, Penn Stae and UCF, three mediocre teams from a national perspective

    • excuses, excuses, excuses.

      enough.

    • I hope that one day you can gloat. Until that happens though, the many mistakes made by him and his staff are fair game, especially because they are mistakes a D-1 coach making over a million dollars a year shouldn’t be making. No D-1 coach should have the luxury of learning on the job, and that’s what it appears the MRAs are advocating. The criticisms lodged after Vandy simply pointed out that the Owls left a lot of points on the field and that it was a problem. As the season progressed that problem got worse and turned what could have been a very good season into a mediocre one. But for the Defense, this season would have been a disaster. If you like Rhule in spite of the many elemental mistakes he made that’s your prerogative, but the rest of us don’t have to buy into a fantasy that he’s the reincarnation of Knute Rockne and will continue to lodge criticisms when they are appropriate.

      • geez, i hope the other JD can gloat because I will have a program to root for in 2018. If he can’t, I won’t. I think the uni has become tired of looking for the next Wayne Hardin. All, with the possible exception of Bruce Arians, has had significant flaws that have held back the program.

  12. I know a couple high school coaches with more game day common sense than this schmuck.

    Not good enough at D-1 Level.

    This ain’t West Chester or Lehigh.

  13. By the way Mike, my brother played for Joe Injaychuck at Upper Moreland in 1990-1991 and the guy was the equivalent to Rhule.

    Complete Bufoon and Stuck on Stupid.

    • Joe Injaychock. I can vouch for Joe as being an incredibly nice guy. I can also do the same for Matt Rhule. Two incredibly nice guys. Leo Durocher wasn’t a nice guy, but he won a couple of pennants.

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