Pierre Is Temple’s Latest Beef


Willa Pierre is the newest Temple Owl.

It was a lot easier to judge Temple football recruiting classes back when Al Golden had the CEO reins and that was because of Golden’s straight-forward recruiting philosophy.

“I believe in recruiting a full team, 25 guys—11 players on defense, 11 on offense, three specialists, depending on need,” Golden told the Temple crown on his first signing night.

Current head coach Matt Rhule believes the same thing, but has had to adjust his philosophy because Steve Addazio’s half-hazard recruiting methods—going down the aisle and picking up this guy and that guy without regard for position—has left Rhule scrambling to get the right mix.

That left most Temple fans asking the question: “Where’s The Beef?” after the current class included a lot of speedy athletes, but not nearly as many of the so-called “big uglies” who create the space for the athletes to do their thing.

As John Kerry might say, help is on the way. The Owls’ latest recruit, 6-3, 293-pound offensive tackle Willa Pierre, is from talent-rich Florida. One of the things you’ve got to love the fact that Pierre was a starter on a high-talent-level OL as a sophomore. The three-star lineman has made a verbal commitment, and you hope he is as much of a man of his word as, say, Keyvone Bruton, was after his Sept. 6 commitment to the Owls. Not only did Bruton commit after the 27-10 win over Penn State, he said he would not take any other visits and he kept that promise, too.

If Pierre is any indication, the current crop of recruits will be top-heavy on linemen on both sides of the ball and then Rhule can hit the reset button after Feb. of 2017 and start recruiting entire teams once again. That method is a proven one for Temple.



11 thoughts on “Pierre Is Temple’s Latest Beef

  1. If Rhule keeps this kid, I’ll never criticize recruiting again. The kid has already said he’s interested in SEC schools and if he gets an offer he’s gone. A lot can happen on fifty weeks. Let’s hope it doesn’t.

  2. I guess if there’s a chance Trump can become president there’s a chance a 3* lineman recruit from Florida will come to Temple. I hope for the latter and not the former but would handicap them both about the same.

    • I get how the Trumpster’s finger on the nukes would handicap us, but not so sure how that’s the same as Pierre leading the way for, say, Raynor, would handicap the Owls. Maybe the loss to Tulsa has fogged the mind but I really need an explanation for that one.

      • Florida commitments always feel like election year promises to me. I’d be both stoked and surprised if we actually landed this guy in the end. I’m with John on this one.

  3. So after only 2 years of Daz recruiting Rhule is still “scrambling” after 4 recruiting seasons now going into his 5th? Daz must have really f’d things up. Anyway, 3 stars are certainly recruited by the big programs so we shouldn’t expect this kid to stay with Temple, but he might. Temple is on the rise, he’s not a 4 or 5 star and he’ll have a better chance to play here. And after seeing a lot of Owls getting a shot at the NFL that’s all a good combination of things to keep him and others like him.

    • I would think we would start seeing complete classes after this five-year cycle (one year for redshirts) is over. So expect as many lineman types as we got athlete types this year and then a full-class system on 2018 signing day. Daz’s classes were so imbalanced it wasn’t funny, but he did bring us P.J. Walker and Matt Ioannidis, even if Matt had to talk him into taking Tyler. The great Daz quote was, “If you guys think he’s good enough, go ahead” and offer him.

  4. Don’t know if any of you saw that Pat Kraft just received an award. Until he books better opponents for football beyond Rutgers and Maryland, I think the award was a tad premature.

    • Must’ve been for the Stony Brook coup. I will be duly impressed once he gets on the phone and talks to Howard and Stony Brook about scheduling a game so that can free up a Temple trip to Rutgers. He always talks about us being so good that people will notice. Sweep Rutgers and Penn State on consecutive weeks, two Big 10 road wins, and people will notice. There is no need for us to have a seventh home game at the cavernous Linc if Stony Brook is one of the seven. With potential P5 shuffling, there is a greater need of consecutive Big 10 road wins. There is a way out of this game and it can be done now. Don’t want to hear arguments that we’re not good enough to beat both teams, because we are. I’d rather go to Toledo or Hawaii, too, then entertain SB. A little creative swapping gets this done.

  5. Anybody know when the spring game is?

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