What Matt Rhule’s Jetpack Has to Do With Stadium Failure

Matt Rhule's Jetpack has been on Go Fund Me for half a month now without a single penny raised.

Matt Rhule’s Jetpack has been on Go Fund Me for half a month now without a single penny raised.

Nothing major gets done at Temple University without it being approved at a Board of Trustees Meeting.

That was true for the Apollo of Temple, now known as the Liacouras Center, and also true for the $50 million basketball practice facility and the $17 million football training facility. To assume that a $300 million stadium is going to get done behind the scenes with all that as a backdrop is a fallacy.

With this Jetpack, Matt will no longer have to take the SEPTA 24 bus to practice.

With this Jetpack, Matt will no longer have to take the SEPTA 24 bus to practice.

Temple people are notoriously protective of what is inside their wallets–perhaps as a Pavlovian Response from spending four years near the edges of the Green Zone (17th Street on the West and 10th Street on the East)–and the strong rumor is that the BOT will not allow discussion of a stadium until $25 million is raised by stadium backers

So another meeting of the BOT having come and gone without a stadium announcement—or even a discussion of a stadium—speaks volumes. Meetings were held in December, March, May and now July without mention of a stadium.

The next question has to be why. For that, all you have to do is look at the funding for Matt Rhule’s Jetpack. As a joke, a poster named “Victory Engineer”  set up a “Go Fund Me” for a Matt Rhule Jetpack on July 3 and posted it on Owlsdaily.com. It has been seen by nearly 2,000 viewers and raised a grand total of zero dollars.

You would think someone, even as a joke, would have given five bucks in two weeks but, so far, nothing.

What does this have to do with a stadium?

Temple people are notoriously protective of what is inside their wallets–perhaps as a Pavlovian Response from spending four years near the edges of the Green Zone (17th Street on the West and 10th Street on the East)–and the strong rumor is that the BOT will not allow discussion of a stadium until $25 million is raised by stadium backers. So far, that figure has fallen far short—about $24 million short—and, at this rate, a stadium will not be discussed until the October meeting.

October, 2068.

It’s time to extend the Lincoln Financial Field lease now and worry about a stadium later.

As far as Matt Rhule’s Jetpack, that has a much better chance of happening on Sept. 6 should the result of the Penn State game turn out to be in the Owls’ favor.

Related:

Get coach Rhule His Jetpack

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7 thoughts on “What Matt Rhule’s Jetpack Has to Do With Stadium Failure

  1. Assuming they have tried to raise stadium money or at least have tested the waters with a feasibility study, 25 million is nothing close to what it will take. There will be no stadium. Rent the Linc and be done with it.

    • They need the $25 mil so they can say, “there, it’s not being built entirely by the taxpayers; our fans have made a significant commitment.” Problem is, the only people who have the deep pockets necessary for that kind of commitment met both a literal (Lewis) and a figurative (Cos) death.

  2. The problem isn’t marquee donors. We have a few alumni who are always good for another mil.
    The problem is the folks who could spare a few grand but won’t. Sons and daughters simply go to school where they’re accepted or where they receive a scholarship. Our grads then give up that money, but they’re giving it to the institutions with whom we compete for advancement on a daily/monthly/annual basis. Mark my words: PSU, Pitt, UMD and WVU get money from people with Temple degrees because their big brands get them loyalty. UDel, Lehigh, Bucknell, etc get money from folks with Temple degrees because their small brands get them loyalty.
    We don’t get Goliath credit and we don’t get David credit either. We exist in the purgatory of zero loyalty.
    Temple people don’t want to send their kids to Temple (by and large) because they see the responsibility of improving the school as too great, and they understand the apathy of their former schoolmates.
    I invite anyone to contradict me.

    • I’ll bite:

      I agree with you on the issue, but I will ask what exactly has Temple done to change that? This isn’t the first time someone has said that our graduates don’t give back enough. Temple needs to do more to connect to the students after they graduate. Hate to say it but Penn State does a great job of that.

      Those schools get that kind of committment because they do things to earn it. I’m an alumni of both Temple and Drexel, and can say with certianty Drexel does more to stay relevant in my life and they don’t even have a football team.

      Final Thought: Fans in seats is largely the effect, not the cause, of alumni prosperity at Temple.

      • Within the last six months I got a mailing from Temple asking for donations. The request came with a booklet which highlighted a young lady who was so happy her student aid let her travel internationally instead of having to work while she was in college. For those of us who did work while we were in college, that did not sound like an ideal pitch to get me (or others) to increase our contributions. A better developed approach by the University might get more alumni contributions.

  3. No contradiction here. Just seems like we took a huge hit when Lewis Katz was killed. He had the will and the way and the means to force Temple forward.

  4. When people are let down and embarrassed by losing year after year instead of being able to get excited and do some chest pounding by winning, the school will never be able to develop a rah-rah following. I also think that because Temple has always been primarily a local commuter school (not much of a chance for on-campus activities, fraternity stuff, etc.) makes it harder to instill a fervent following – the “meat loaf and mashed potato” students who go home every day. PSU is an isolated campus with a full-time student body and has a great winning history, both of which lead to loyalty and a fervent fan base. Also, Temple’s original basis of providing a solid education to people of limited means leads to students who just want to get a degree and get a job – nothing more, nothing less. Heck, even the successful basketball program doesn’t fill up the arena and is not well known or respected nationally. Temple, simply put, just has some unique “qualities” that seem to work against developing a strong fan and donor base.

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