Selection Sunday is 3 ½ weeks away, but the first Selection Wednesday in a long time for Temple football was just concluded and, by all optics, the 20 or so recruits had to be impressed by what they saw.
If any of those recruits were going to make their decision to attend Temple based on the Owls beating the No. 1 team in the country, then Matt Rhule is out of luck. Fortunately, these kids are smart enough to realize that Matt does not control what happens on the basketball court.
The recruits included, but were not limited to, guys like Donald Glenn, Tayon Fleet-Davis, Kenny Pickett, Tommy DeVito, Devin Miller, Mike Tverdov and Brandon Outlaw. DeVito and Outlaw are interesting names. DeVito is the quarterback at Don Bosco Prep, the same place where current backup Frank Nutile went to school. (The Owls also had a quarterback named Mac DeVito in the Pre-Al Golden Era, but we have not been able to establish a relationship between the two. Logically, there might be because Mac DeVito was, like Golden, from nearby Colts Neck, N.J.) Outlaw is one of the fastest high school sprinters on the East Coast (100- and 200-meters, who plays football in Moorestown, N.J. He has played both running back and wide receiver.He has good bloodlines, as his father, Bufus “Bucky” Outlaw, was a great running back for Southern (better known as South Philly) High in 1977 . Bucky, a Howard University grad, is now a Center City CEO. Fleet-Davis, besides having the greatest last name for any running back in history, is from the same town as former Temple running back Sheldon Morris (Oxon Hill, Md.) and went to the rival high school as THE greatest running back in Temple history, Paul Palmer. Fleet-Davis attends Potomac High, while Palmer went to Winston Churchill High, also in Potomac.
All of these guys saw the campus, if not the basketball team, at its best on Wednesday night.
My guess is the total university experience is much more important for Temple football recruits and, on all of those accounts, the Owls came out on top. The place was packed, the students were vibrant, the place was electric. A Temple football player who won a Super Bowl earlier this month, Brandon McManus, got a prolonged standing ovation from a packed house. The recruits got a taste of the same type of love that could be coming their way in five years.
Everything electric about this game was there and, from one important standpoint, it was a better night for the Owls than Notre Dame in football because the fans were all Temple. The only things bad about ND was the loss and the that the Owls had 100 recruits there that night and no commitments the next day. Maybe had they won, they would have had a handful but we will never know.
Had the Owls capped the night off with a win and, say, closed down Broad Street, the recruits could have gotten even more fresh made juice from the experience. Hopefully, the taste of concentrated juice they had was sweet enough.