Collins Rings In New Year


They could have held this party in a phone booth 20 years ago.

As careers go, I’m so glad I got into the writing end of the media than the photographic one.

Exhibit A was the annual Season Ticket Holder Party at the Pavilion.

Pointing my cell phone as steady as I could at head coach Geoff Collins, I recorded this statement:

“People asked me tonight since I was from the SEC, that this was probably not as good as the SEC. Let me tell you this was better than anything in the SEC.”

I tried to download the video to post here only to get this message:

“Can’t attach file over 25 MB.”

It’s all Greek to me.


My keepsake (I know, terrible photo)

Oh well. Taking the video seemed like a good idea at the time because Collins can hold the interest of a crowd maybe even better than his predecessor, Matt Rhule.

Collins, as always, seemed pretty sincere. Maybe they don’t have season-ticket-holder parties in the SEC but Temple’s season ticket-holder party went from a small-time deal in the Bobby Wallace days to filling every inch of an indoor football field with fans last night.

I finally got to meet the man last night and I was very impressed with him.

I told him how much I thought Nick Sharga needed to be involved in the offense this year, particularly with his blocking, and Collins agreed and one-upped me by saying that Nick not only blocks but gets in a healthy share of carries every practice. To me, you can talk about the quarterback all you want but if Sharga isn’t back there to be the last line of defense against a blitzing linebacker, the quarterback is probably going to end up on his back side. Before Sharga got here, that was pretty much the fate of P.J. Walker his first two years on the job. Rhule’s spread offense was a disaster because every time Walker went empty backfield, opposing coaches routinely blitzed one more player than the Owls could block and Walker had to run for his life.

Hopefully, Collins won’t make the same mistake by exposing an inexperienced quarterback to limited pocket protections.

We talked about coach Hardin and Collins said he was thrilled the coach made it to the Saturday practice before he passed, but I dared not ask him who the starting quarterback would be. Collins made clear before the first of two scrimmages that he would not decide who the quarterback would be until the second scrimmage and we’re just not there yet. I’m sure others asked the question, though.

I told him jokingly they could have held the season-ticket party in a phone booth in the 1980s and he laughed and said he was aware the program has come a long way. (Heck, he was the Albright College defensive coordinator in nearby Reading in the 1980s so he probably knew the Temple fan landscape in those days well.)

Speaking of ringing in the New Year, the season ticket holders were given a terrific keepsake in a quality championship ring.

I told Scott Walcoff, the associate AD, that whoever came up with that idea is a genius. Scott gave all the credit to his boss, Pat Kraft. Walcoff said that fans who still want the ring should keep an eye out because the university will make it available on a limited basis and it still might be available for those who purchase season tickets between now and the Villanova game. This is a quality item, far better than the kind of thing you might find in a cracker jack box. To borrow a phrase from Abraham Lincoln, “it is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.” The fans who have been through more thin than thick but remained true to the program are champions in my mind.

Believe me, it’s worth it, but don’t take the accompanying photo as proof.

Photography was never my strong suit.

Friday: Perception Versus Reality


9 thoughts on “Collins Rings In New Year

  1. schedule complaint warning schedule complaint warning
    How The Hell can temple Football ever get good crowds when so many of their games are NOT Saturday afternoons ?
    Friday Night / Thursday Night. Good Lord what is going on ?
    Might as well be back to Tuesday Night games back on the MAC when MAYBE 5000 people were in the stands.
    Why ?

    • Navy should have been a Saturday afternoon game. Considering this is a AAC championship game rematch from last year. They would probably have a great turnout if that game was moved to Saturday afternoon or night.

  2. Both of you simply do not understand sports today. The only thing that matters is TV, which controls everything. NFL moves game times with impunity as does MLB. Fans are just not in the equation. Frankly, the Thursday night game is a great time to play for TU. the game may draw less fans but will draw a large viewership. That’s more important in the scheme of things than a 1000 more fans attending the game.

  3. Right on John. It’s about where the big money’s at and that means TV contracts for the schools. Actually Temple’s 25-30K is pretty good when compared to most other schools. Only the big,big programs fill large stadiums and make a lot that way also. Actually Temple’s doing better now than ever and being in the AAC helps that equation – better than the MAC for ratings. This is as good as it will get for the Owls, at least for probably a long time.
    Temple is scheduling more and more ACC opponents. Now Georgia Tech along with BC, Miami, and Maryland. Whether it equates into a conference invite remains to be seen.

    • As long as they keep winning and build the stadium they will be in the mix when the next TV contract is negotiated because they play in the 4th largest TV market.. Although it’s anecdotal, at the party Tuesday a friend told me that a B of T member said the stadium is a done deal and construction will commence in the next six months. I’ll believe it when I see it though.

    • TV revenue deals are with the conferences. Contracts aren’t with the schools,, with the exception of ND.

      • No one said that they were. TV could force a conference to expand to increase viewership.

      • The only people who aren’t slaves to television are the P5 schools. Everything Temple athletics does from now on has to be to position itself long-term for an invite because obviously nothing is happening short-term.

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