On a snowy Saturday, while shoveling out of our driveway, a number of rhetorical questions occurred to us. Rhetorical, because they are the kinds of questions Pravda never asks once of Chairman Matt and probably will never ask. On the way out to the garage to pick up the shovel and the rock salt, I perused Pravda for some of the latest recruiting updates. There was one long posted update by one of the editors there and every word was glowing. In fact, I don’t remember a single word being written negatively about recruiting there in three years. One of the posters over there last week called a recruit “a reach” but prefaced that with the obligatory “I know we’re not allowed to be negative here. ….”
I wonder what gave him that impression? It would have been nice to hear the answers to just one of these five questions:
- What happened to the hurry-up offense in Houston?
Only Zach Gelb of the reporters in Houston highlighted the Owls’ atrocious clock management in the 24-13 loss in the AAC championship game. Gelb dutifully reported he asked Matt Rhule, Jahad Thomas, P.J. Walker and Marcus Satterfield about it and said nothing was wrong, yet even Stevie Wonder could see wasting 20 seconds on every play call was very wrong. The fact that nobody else asked about it was also very wrong. We still have not heard a satisfactory answer. It could be about time we did.
- What did you mean by you are in favor of a stadium if they “do it right?”
Rhule has been quoted that he is in favor of an on-campus stadium “if they do it right.” One would presume that spending “only” $100 million is probably not conducive to doing it right. A simple question to Matt on signing day is “what is your vision of a stadium done right?” A good answer might be comfortable 40,000 seating with a couple of state-of-the-art replay scoreboards and that’s probably not possible with the frugal price tag.
- Would there be less air hockey at the next bowl?
Air hockey, touring the Everglades, bowling, liberal curfews and beach volleyball were all part of the Boca Raton Bowl experience. What wasn’t part of it was hoisting that bowl trophy at the end of the game. It was a learning experience for the first-year bowl staff, so maybe there will be a more business-like approach at the next one. It would be nice to get that on the record soon.
- If Missouri wasn’t a distraction, why did Tyler Matakevich say it was?
Rhule said his pre-AAC championship experience being interviewed for the Missouri job was not a distraction but Tyler Matakevich said on 6abc tv that Sunday afternoon that “it’s just another thing we have to block out and concentrate on the bowl.” If it wasn’t a distraction, there would be no need to block it out. Probably would have been better to tell Missouri no right away and say something like “I’m the Temple coach and the only thing I’m thinking about is winning a championship.” Instead, the “I can’t tell what the future holds” and “this is not about me” quotes let the papers talk about just that for two days when the focus should have been on the team and the school’s first shot at a title.
- If you had to put your finger on one thing, what was the main cause of the 3-4 finish?
This is something the staff will have to figure out in the offseason and inoculate against next season. It would be nice to know if they have identified the problem now so they can address it in the next few months.