Haason Reddick gives a shout out to Temple Football Forever at the 2:29 mark of this video. What kid would not want to be a part of this?
Back in the 1960s, a political satire program appeared on network television for a couple of years called “That Was The Week That Was.” It was hosted by a guy named David Frost and gave an actor named Alan Alda his first national exposure.
For first-year Temple coach Geoff Collins, that week was this week and it might have been his best week ever as a football coach anywhere, head or assistant. For a guy who ran the recruiting at Georgia Tech and Alabama, that’s saying a lot. Any Temple fan skeptical of Collins’ long-term commitment to the Owls (raising hand here), can now be disabused of the notion of a quick exit. This week of recruiting proves that he at least plans to be here for a long time better than any words that might come out of his mouth. As a start, this is the kind of class you build if you want to beat Power 5 schools three years down the road. At the very worst, he is building a house of brick, not straw.
The Owls got 13 commits and before anyone rains on their parade and says wait until February to see if those commits are still around, remember that most people are men of their word. It’s the exception, not the rule, when a player de-commits from his original commitment.
There are a couple of reasons for that and one of them has to do with first impressions being important. A player often gets a “gut” feeling for a school and that feeling in the gut seldom goes away. The first love usually is the strongest one. The second reason is that the school that showed the initial love gets the benefit of the doubt.
Temple is a hot school right now and not only from a football perspective. All studies have indicated that incoming college students want an urban experience, not a rural one, and football players are no different. For the past four years, Temple has broken records for applications. These students could have gone anywhere. They chose Temple as the place they want to be. Philadelphia is a big plus as well, after recently getting the only “World Class City” designation of a city in the United States and being named the second-best travel destination for vacations. When you go to a school, you go for the full four-year experience, not just the football side.
Nobody is vacationing in, say, Piscataway or State College.
Speaking of Piscataway, it was rather amusing to watch the reaction to the announcement of St. Augustine Prep running back Kyle Dobbins. A thread was started on the Rutgers’ football site noting that Dobbins would make his announcement at 8 p.m. on Monday. One of the first posts was asking him to please pick Rutgers. Another post followed with a “praying hands” icon. When Dobbins finally picked Temple, the tone changed. In a matter of three hours, the kid went from “please, please, pick us” to “he sucks and Ash probably didn’t want him anyway.” Only one RU poster called out his fellow ones for the hypocrisy. Par for the course over there.
All the things that make Philadelphia a vibrant destination city for tourists make it an incredibly exciting destination for potential students.
Collins, a skilled recruiter with an impressive pedigree, is mining those assets and, so far, he is coming up with Gold. You can bet that he will be digging for larger chunks in the months ahead.
Monday: A Closer Look At The Commits