Oklahoma at Temple Announcement Could Come Sooner Than Later


There are few athletic directors more engaging to fans out there than Temple’s own Dr. Pat Kraft, who joined a conversation I was having with former head coach Wayne Hardin during one tailgate last fall.

Coach and I were talking about past Temple opponents, and why we could not get some of those familiar schools on the schedule. I then threw a few names out to Kraft, including Indiana, which I thought might be a school the Temple administration might be interested in playing.


Rubber match?

“I asked,” Kraft said, “they won’t play us. We’ve gotten too good.”

(Getting too good is a good problem to have.)

Kraft later said that the days of Temple playing “2 for 1s” are over, so the news earlier this week that Temple is about to schedule a “big name” opponent that wants to come to Philadelphia and doesn’t mind whether it is at Lincoln Financial Field or the new stadium is big.


Mr. Woodside puts away the last meeting.

Temple head coach Matt Rhule indicated as much on 97.5 on Tuesday, saying that the Owls will be playing Maryland, Rutgers, “possibly” Duke and a “big name” opponent he could not divulge just yet.

It is a Big 12 school and, while West Virginia makes the most sense, it certainly doesn’t fit the kind of big national name criteria Rhule outlined.

All indications are that the opponent will be Oklahoma. That’s good news because it shows that Kraft never gave up trying to get someone and that the Owls are moving away from the Stony Brooks and the Villanovas of the world. For the Owls to get into big bowl games, they are going to have to not only win AAC titles but combine that with wins over big-name opponents. Even Houston, which beat a P5 opponent in the Peach Bowl, Florida State, did not get a Final Four invite despite a 12-1 record.

The parameters of national success are pretty clear for an AAC school. Win the league, but also beat a big name school. Oklahoma is a big name, if that is the team Temple schedules. Heck, Oklahoma might help the Owls get into the Big 12 some day.

Once the Oklahoma shoe drops in a couple of weeks, it should be big news. Maybe the Owls can schedule a road trip that includes Tulsa and Oklahoma back-to-back and stay out there and practice for a week.

Monday: Power 5 Health Care

Wednesday: A Look At Some Early Signees


14 thoughts on “Oklahoma at Temple Announcement Could Come Sooner Than Later

  1. The only school to do a two and one with is PSU because of the crowds it draws. i think though that if the Owls beat them this season it will be decades before the rivalry is renewed.

    • I would also add Notre Dame, but no other school. Bill Bradshaw told me that Rutgers tried to get us to do 2-1 and he said absolutely not. They picked up the phone the next week and finally agreed to the 2020-21 home-and-home series. Art of the deal. Bill put Rutgers in its place. They are not all what they think they are cracked up to be.

  2. Oklahoma is the school.., Houston will beat them in the 2016 opener…,

    The Big 12 will not expand anytime soon, Temple has finally written off any chance of getting accepted in the Big 12…, really hard for an administration with limited resources to fight two big battles at the same time – winning support for an on-campus stadium and fighting for Big 12 acceptance….,

    the saying goes if you chase two rabbits at the same time both will get away, think that is exactly what has happened to Temple.., wasted effort with the Big 12 and lost the stadium fight

    • Matt’s comments “they don’t care whether they play at the Linc or an on-campus stadium” indicate to me two things: 1) this game is a long way away (think 2021 or after); 2) the uni now is considering extending the Linc lease and bracing for a long fight with the city and community and lawsuits over the stadium. That’s a pretty open-ended statement on Matt’s part.

  3. That. Would. Be. Phenomenal. ND was a nail bitter, and that gives me pause that OK wouldn’t be smashing. Heck, may even help us get another Game Day 🙂

    • Notre Dame 38, Texas 3
      Notre Dame 24, Temple 20
      Texas 24, Oklahoma 17

      Can’t go entirely by comparative scores, but that grouping of scores is telling. Temple gave ND a much better game than Texas did. I don’t think we would be outclassed against any Big 12 team. (In fact, I think ND would have won the Big 12 easily last year.)

      • The only sure way to beat those run and gun teams is through ball control. If a team can grind out six and seven minute scoring drives against them they can be beaten. Don’t know if TU could survive for long in a score fest. It would be tough to match those teams score for score as West Virginia has found out.

      • Looks like we are building a better brand of football than West Virginia. Run the ball, play action, solid defense, work the clock. I like that a lot better than run and gun.

  4. Oklahoma has the best pedigree in college football. They lost 10 games the entire decade of 1950 and was undefeated three straight years.

  5. Rutgers asking for a 2 for 1? Good grief. They weren’t keeping up with current events. As for the Big 12…I’m not entirely sure Temple being out of the conversation is such a bad thing. The alchemy of that conference makes it incredibly unstable. What with Texas and their own network (which ESPN is losing 10 million a year on), Oklahoma basically vetoing any move they make and now Baylor’s current disaster. There’s no hope for a Big 12 Network and every chance the league implodes and the marquee schools scatter to P5 conferences. The way ahead is clearly to beef up the non-conference schedule and hope for some expansion in the playoff format which will give G5 schools a shot marginally better than getting hit by lightning.

  6. A couple years of G5’s beating P5’s in bowl games may open the doors for inclusion to the playoffs if expanded.

    • I can think of one G5 that could have played a P5 in a bowl game last year to send a message. Unfortunately, we took on a MAC team which we lost to even though they were lacking a coach.

      • … and half its staff (the other half was already hired by Iowa State and out recruiting). Houston came up big; we came up small.

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