Fly On The Wall

Maybe someday Pat Kraft will shed some light on what went on in the Collins’ interview.

As he usually does, 920 The Jersey’s Zach Gelb, a  Temple-Made sports talk radio host with a great future, asks the best questions at Temple press conferences.

During the introduction of Geoff Collins, Gelb asked Collins if he could guarantee Temple football recruits if he would be here four years from now when they graduated.  It was one of the few questions that Collins did not handle with the dexterity of an Ozzie Smith.


Zach Gelb

Collins let that question go off the back of his glove into left field when he said all he was interested in was the here and now and that’s what he would tell recruits.

To me, that was an E6 on one of the few hardball questions Collins had to field that day.

Although I appreciated the honesty, if I were Collins I would have lied (if indeed it was a lie) my ass off and told him, of course, if this place is good enough for the John Chaneys and the Wayne Hardins of the world, it is good enough for me. I plan to be here for the long haul and make Temple football a national power.

That would have served two purposes, assuaging a couple of very important groups: The current recruiting class and the players in the program already. The first group is being told by the bad guys—the other coaches seeking Temple commits—that Collins is here only short-term and would bail after the first overachieving season and the second group has been already burned by a head coach who said it would take the perfect job for him to leave Temple.

Baylor’s a nice job, but with impending sanctions, it is far from a perfect one and there are many objective people on the outside—not necessarily Temple ones—who feel that Rhule had a better chance of succeeding at Temple than he does with the pair of handcuffs he has to put on to get the job done in Waco.

That leaves the next big question.

If Gelb, or really anyone, gets a chance, he should find someone who was in the room with Collins when he was being interviewed by the Temple Board of Trustees and ask if the same question ever came up as a condition of him getting the job.  By now, Temple should be extremely sensitive to coaches like Steve Addazio—and to a much lesser extent Rhule and Al Golden—using it and moving on.

Oh, to be a fly in the wall hearing the answer to that question. I hope that question was asked in the vetting process, but there is also a chance that it was not.

Perhaps athletic director Dr. Pat Kraft is best equipped to supply the answer and we know the perfect guy to ask him.

Monday: Temple’s Montana to Rice


6 thoughts on “Fly On The Wall

  1. I blame all of the schools for raising salaries to absurd levels. Thirty-five years ago if a coach made 200k that was a lot of money. The salaries have gone up twenty and thirty times that amount. TV is also to blame because they bid absurd amounts of money to broadcast the games knowing that most people won’t realize that sports comprise the largest part of their cable bills. As long as this arrangement continues and the NCAA permits its D-1member schools to discriminate this will not change. One bright spot is that people are cutting cable by the thousands and ESPN and its ilk are losing subscribers at rates that are requiring them to cut their budgets. If that continues, the money spigot will slow requiring the schools themselves to change the way they operate. Finally, this country is based on capitalism and I can’t blame a coach for taking advantage of the system. There are only 130 or so D-1 coaches so the jobs are pretty exclusive and honor and loyalty no longer inhabit college sports, if it ever did.

  2. You can’t have your cake and eat it too (although that expression never made sense to me). If you’re complaining about Daz, who we should have paid BC to take off our hands, for lying about being long termers it’s hard to harsh on this guy for being reasonably honest.

    Personally I like the middle ground where you commit with a tacit understanding there’s an out if a better opportunity comes along. This was the approach my ex-wife took to our marriage when she ran off with her ski instructor. I’m now in a much better relationship and believe the owls will be too after Coach Collins leaves after having continued to advance our program.

    • Looks like wedding vows mean as much as signed contracts do. Temple seems to be the only school that honors its end of a contract. Hell, Temple waited even for the 8 years of the Bobby Wallace contract to come to an end before letting him go. Other schools in the same league, UConn and ECU, have eaten contracts. To me, a vow is sacred and so is a signature above the dotted line of a contract. Temple feels the same way I do not from what it says, but from what it does. When was the last time Temple fired a major sports coach? Hint: It was a long time ago.

      • It is amazing that coaches at TU can stink for years and not be fired. Frankly, I would now say that Dunphy deserves to be fired. While a think he is a very competent coach, he has demonstrated that he is incapable of doing any better than he has. The team clearly has plateaued and likely will never go beyond the first round of the NCAA’s as long as he’s the coach. There is also no reason that explains why he’s regularly out recruited by inferior programs especially because he has the best facilities the program ever has had, TU has a storied BB program, and a very good schedule. I recognize that he was victimized by bad luck this season with Brown and Trey Lowe not being able to play. Nevertheless, this is the second time in four years that he’s been caught short. Good coaches overcome bad luck. On top of that the current team has gotten worse as the season has progressed, which evidences that either he’s not coaching or the kids aren’t listening. Either one calls for his dismissal. If TU wants to be a major player, they have to do what major programs do and fire a coach who consistently can’t get past a sticking point.

  3. You’ve hired a coach who has been drinking from the SEC fountain. Big stadiums, TV contracts, conference network, almost automatic bowl invites. A coach who has gotten about as high as one can at the assistant and coordinator level in that league. What he wants to be next is one of those 14 head coaches in the SEC. But to get there, he knows he has to get a head coaching gig on his resume and be successful.

    Temple has been a well-known pathway to move toward that goal. The school has some drawing power so better players can be recruited thanks to a program legacy that consistently sends a player or two to the NFL annually who succeeds in a big way. The program has been winning and winning in a way that gets noticed (physically dominating on both sides of the ball).

    So he comes here for a few years, builds a team that consistently competes and wins more than they lose. Like you said, one year he gets an over-achieving group and uses that fame to land either that dreamed of SEC job or steps up to another P-5 job to hone his skills.

    Could an older man on the back side of his career have been hired a la Solich at Ohio? Like who? Would that man have the energy to keep hustling for ten years or so selling players on what they get when playing for the Owls?

    Probably the AD is cognizant and sees the situation clearly. He likely has a sheet of paper in his desk with names of potential hires in two columns….up and coming, and, established but available.

    A name for the up and coming list: T. J. Weiss. Was interim HC at UConn some years back, recently OC at USF. Another SEC-based coach.

    • Someday Temple will swing and miss on one of these hires. I don’t think that has happened (possibly, with Daz) but the more people you have to hire, the greater your chance for failure.

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