About a year ago, just about every Rutgers’ fan was singing the praises of getting an Urban Meyers’ disciple in then Ohio State co-defensive coordinator Chris Ash.
“Over the last 4
years, I’ve helped
Matt (Rhule) with
key decisions within
the program; philosophy
shifts at different times.”
_ Geoff Collins
A few of those same fans are singing a different tune about Ash now. Rutgers lost to Michigan, 78-0; Ohio State, 58-0 and Penn State, 38-0 (yes, the same Penn State team that beat Temple by a measly touchdown). The Scarlet Knights are coming off a 2-10 season and some people are questioning his game day coaching ability. Even the media has joined in as NJ.com called the loss to Michigan State “all on Chris Ash.”
The point being the 100 percent praise Ash received a year ago mollified considerably after watching the guy with the clipboard in his hands.
If those decisions
were to utilize
the fullback to
jump start an ailing
running game and ditch
the four wides and
go to a play-action
passing game, expect
Temple to head to
a NY6 bowl under Collins
Geoff Collins has received universal praise as Temple’s new hire, just like Ash did a year ago at Rutgers, so the question some fans might ask about Collins is “How do we know he won’t be a Chris Ash?”
You know, like another hot assistant, like UConn’s Bob Diaco—the national college football assistant coach of the year in 2012 with Notre Dame—who falls on his face as a head coach. Heck, we don’t know if Ash will join Diaco but a 2-10 first season with one of the wins over Howard doesn’t engender a lot of confidence among the North Jersey faithful. What they have learned in East Hartford and Piscataway is being the greatest assistant coach in the world does not automatically translate to being a great head coach. They are two different jobs and even Matt Rhule had a rocky first couple of years. For every assistant who turns into a great head coach like Rhule, there are 10 guys like Diaco who need to get fired. Head coaches who move from one place where they did well as a head coach to another have a higher rate of success. Those are the guys P5 schools can afford to hire.
As far as assistants go, the answer is we do not know, but the weight of the evidence is in Collins’ favor over Ash or Diaco.
The truth is, with an assistant coach, you never know but there are a couple of things with Collins that give him a little more street cred than say, an Ash or a Diaco. One, the Temple program is in much better shape, player-wise, than the Rutgers or UConn. Two, no less of an authority on Temple football than Matt Rhule himself said the hire of Collins was a “home run” and, three, in two coaching stops along with way, Collins was Rhule’s boss, not the other way around. Rhule learned from Collins. Four, Collins was a coordinator, not a “co-coordinator” like Ash, so you know the Florida Mayhem defense was his production and there are no blurred lines on who contributed what. Collins already has been a coach at Temple of sorts over the last four years as “helped Matt with key decisions within the program” according to this interview.
If those decisions were to utilize the fullback to jump start an ailing running game and ditch the four wides and go to a play-action passing game, expect Temple to head to a NY6 bowl under Collins.
Now all Collins has to do is perform on game day and, from what he has done in the days leading up to his first one, all systems are go for a great liftoff.