Timing Is Everything


Any Temple football fan since the days of the MAC knows that planning ahead can be a tricky thing.

You set aside the day for the home games and hope you can get to at least some of the nearby games.

You very rarely know more than a few weeks, sometimes a few days, what the exact kickoff times will be.

Such is life in the television-dominated world of college football these days.

Something different happened this season, though.

Temple fans now know the kickoff times and the days for many of the games and that can be a good thing.

Of course, the most important game time is the one on Sept. 2 at Notre Dame, perhaps the highest-profile remaining game on the TU sked until 2024. That game will start at 3:30 on NBC and probably be on in every bar and tavern in the country.

Three-thirty is perhaps the best time for a home Temple game and the Owls lucked out by hosting Villanova on 3:30 on Sept. 9. That game will not be on over-the-air television in Philadelphia, which is probably a good thing because that means there will be more fannies in the seats than usual. If the Owls don’t get at least 35,000 for this one it will be a major disappointment considering they drew 34,000 for the home opener against Army last year.

On Sept. 15, the Owls host UMass on ESPNU at 7 p.m. The less said about that game the better.

On September 21, the Owls travel to hot Tampa for a 7:30 (or 8) ESPN game. Probably best for them that game is not being played in the daytime.

Another time etched in zone is the revenge match against Army, high noon, on Oct. 21. That game will be on CBS Sports Network. Owls also host Navy in another revenge match (for them) on Nov. 2 on ESPN. That is either a 7:30 or 8 p.m. start.

The final known starting time is the Nov. 10 game at Cincinnati, 7 p.m., on ESPN2.

Still unknown are the times of games against Houston, East Carolina, UConn, UCF and Tulsa but winning the AAC championship certainly seems to have put the Owls in a position where a lot of their game times are already known.

You could not say the same thing this time last year.

The Lineup

Sept 2 @Notre Dame 3:30 NBC
Sept 9 Villanova 3:30 ESPN3
Sept 15 Umass 7:00 ESPNU
Sept 21 @USF 7:30/8 ESPN
Oct 21 @Army 12:00 CBSSN
Nov 2 Navy 7:30/8 ESPN
Nov 10 @Cincinnati 7:00 ESPN2
Houston @East Carolina Uconn UCF @ Tulsa TBD

Wednesday: Sweet Home Recruiting


11 thoughts on “Timing Is Everything

  1. There’s at least 4 Thursday/Friday night games on the schedule. I don’t think one a year is a bad idea, just to switch things up and I understand the need for some exposure, but don’t you just wish they play games on a Saturday and be done with that?

    • Dictated by the Power 5. If you are a P5 school, you get on national TV on Saturdays. If you are one of us, G5, you get told what day to play. It’s their world and we’re just living in it.

  2. Have a “turn back the clock day.” Start a game at 1:00.

  3. Like Thursday-Friday games because I then can get work done on the computer while watching all of the games on TV Saturday.

  4. “You can please some of the people some of the time, but you can’t please most of the people most of the time. A lot of people love to complain all of the time. Some people never complain, but they’re all Packer and Patriot fans.” A, Lincoln

  5. on the field unprecedented success the last two years and home attendance is still woeful.., now what?

    Marketing 101 – 404.., University gets an ‘F’ in all four courses

    stop failing and hire a professional marketing firm to figure out the best way to tap the Greater Philadelphia market and put more butts in the seats!!!!

    • kj: I’ve always said if the college FB program wanting to go big time in Phila had “P” on the helmet rather than a “T,” it would be a lot different. Money would flow to the athletic department to make a successful program happen. Alumni presence would be high for a season or two but after that, unless there is on field success/progress, that would fizzle.

      But in reality, between DC and Boston, there really is no college FB program that captures the interest of the general public, BC included. Syracuse is not in the I-95 corridor. Neither is Penn State. It’s a desert for the game in the east. People who have relocated to the area bring with them their interest for their alma mater and will attend games if that team is in the area. Otherwise, they stay home and watch them on ESPN or Fox.

      In that regard, a marketing effort that can sell seats in NY, Phila, Baltimore, or DC would be worthy of an award from Congress.

      Here’s the progression:

      They don’t win. Why go?

      They win, but don’t play anyone. Why go?

      They play good teams, but don’t win. Why go?

      They play good teams and win some. Gets them nowhere, why go?

      They play good teams, win a lot, but still aren’t relevant. Why go?

      In other words, a lot of inertia and excuses to be overcome. Local media buy-in would be a big help to mainstream the program. Until the papers put the program on the front page, above the fold of the sports section and TV stations provide half the coverage they give the Eagles, it won’t change. Temple FB has to become a 365 day subject to bring people to it.

      The mission impossible theme is to get that to happen.

      • sad but true analysis…, the current path is not sustainable. the current and predicted return on investment is increased debt.

        the future?
        option one, double-down and make a 3-5 year giant push for P5 acceptance (big risk and big reward); option two, continue the status quo and increase debt (strong pressure on university financials); option three, decrease spending, reduce debt, and play at a lower tier (most sustainable)

      • Good points. Only exception is that state wide media needs to buy into the football program and help build the Temple brand. Newspapers such as the Allentown Morning Call, Harrisburg Patriot News, Scranton Times Tribune, Reading Eagle barely cover the Owls. Ditto with the news stations in these markets . The program should start football caravans into PA markets others than Philly or Pittsburgh. Stop wasting time visiting the NJ shore. Maybe get a media buyer involved, to place billboards on PA turnpike including extensions, I81, I80, I78, I84 etc.

  6. We’ve all talked about the “whys” of not being able to move the program further along: bad luck, bad decisions overall, Philly being a pro sports town, moderate funding and fan support at best, etc. Personally I think the moderate to poor fan support (for whatever the reasons) is the biggest problem – Temple just doesn’t have that rah, rah kind of student body and alumns. Other schools that have had start-up football programs have gotten to bowl games within just a few years. Heck, Temple couldn’t even retain their baseball, men’s track&field and gymnastics teams when they wanted to move the football program ahead. So, to me, it is what it is at Temple and that’s why I say the AAC is just right for the Owls at this time. If an invite for a P5 comes along, take it while the taking is good, but don’t expect a lot of winning to come with it – not right now anyway.

    • Jon: I agree with what you say. Temple students and alumni don’t have the rah rah spirit. Of the 8 season tickets I have and another 6 that a friend has, none of the people that are part of those groups are TU alums. Yes, if a P5 conference invitation came along, grab it. But realistically it ain’t going to happen. In a previous comment to a prior TFF article, I commented that I understand there’s about 9,000 season tickets sold including partial plans. I asked if anyone has any better info and no one responded. So, again, assuming that’s close to correct, forget about a P5 conference. If and when that ticket buying base gets to 25,000 (minimum), then you can start thinking about a P5 conference. Until then, the AAC is it for TU.

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