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.
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