TU Bowl Motto: Let’s Win This Bad Boy

tailgate

Tailgate areas are at the top of this photo

Other than knowing the geography every nook and cranny of Philadelphia, the Tampa/St. Pete area is the one I am most familiar with on the planet.

If I could live there, I would. That’s pretty much why I play the lottery a couple of times a week.

Great weather a dozen months a year and no driving in the snow. I know. I spent nearly 20 springs there, covering the Philadelphia Phillies for a suburban daily and going down on my own in the years I was not on assignment.

fiusked

This is a team Geoff Collins should beat

Can’t beat it. From Dale Mabry Boulevard to the Howard Franklin Bridge, the driving is easy and the people are laid back and happy. There are plenty of Philadelphia transplants, lured by the appeal of the Phillies being in town for February and March and plenty of Eagles’ bars down there.

So the Temple Owls will live in St. Pete/Clearwater for at least a week, getting an invitation to the Gasparilla Bad Boy Mowers Bowl (Dec., 21, 8 p.m., ESPN).

It should be a fun week.

This time, though, the focus should be on winning. It is the only game on national TV that day and the national perceptions of Temple football will be formed in bars from Salem, Oregon to Salem, Massachusetts.

The Owls’ lone motto from today on out should be: “Let’s Win This Bad Boy.”

If Matt Rhule were to get on the horn with his good friend Geoff Collins, he’d give the first-year coach this advice:

“Geoff, I wanted our Florida bowl to be a reward for our kids so we went heavy on the air hockey, the bowling, the beach volleyball and even a trip to the Everglades. What I didn’t do enough of was game prep and we got our asses handed to us by a good Toledo team. Don’t make the same mistake I made. Go very light on the tourist stuff and very heavy on the game prep. Make it like a regular week at the E-O.”

If that were truly Rhule’s advice—and we suspect it would be—the Owls will be much better off. Look at it this way: From a national perception standpoint, the Temple football brand (Temple TUFF?) takes a huge hit if it loses to Florida International. There’s a big difference between finishing 6-7 and trending downward after back-to-back 10-win seasons and 7-6 and trending upward by winning four of the last five games. It’ll be pretty hard to sell things like “The Standard, Money Downs and Swag” coming off a 6-7 season. In fact, it will sound damn hollow.

Plus, there is the added incentive of doing something those double-digit-win Temple teams did not do: Celebrate the last game of the season by hoisting a bowl trophy. They had to watch two teams do that the past two years at their expense.

So let’s win this bad boy and wash that nasty taste out of our mouths. There’s no easy formula to accomplish that, but hard practices would be a good place to start.

Wednesday: Ridiculousness

Friday: Closer Look at FIU

9 thoughts on “TU Bowl Motto: Let’s Win This Bad Boy

  1. Or, “We need to win this bad, boy.” Glad we didn’t get FAU in Boca with their coach Kiffin. The 2 teams Temple and FIU played, we did better against UCF (albeit but not good) and they did much better against UMass. From looking at their record they obviously can rack up some points but they can also be contained. So, while this is the best matchup to get a win, I’m not convinced we will win. But as we’ve said before, while this is a pretty crappy bowl and opponenet, Temple needs to win it badly. Just do your job CC. Go Owls.

  2. Frankly, I’m glad we got this Bowl and this opponent. This should be a win and a bowl win is desperately needed. So is the 7-6 winning record for the season. And I’m not going to look down my nose at any opponent. Over the years, I heard too many demeaning comments about TUFB. So I agree with you that CC needs to go down there and prepare likes it’s the biggest game of the year. Because, at this point, that’s what it is.

  3. Previous Temple indoor game was a bilgesucking loss to Idaho, so the Owls need to batten down the hatches and get shipshape. After the last two debowcles, TU should comp all who were hornswaggled at the Rat Mouth and Militaristic Bowls. Arrr!

  4. bowl game in a baseball stadium = #MadeForTV

    • Wow. All that Nike money and Oregon not able to keep a head coach. Not sure if Taggart was the right guy for Oregon or Rhule is the right guy for Baylor. Taggart was the right guy for USF and WKU and Rhule was the right guy for Temple. When are these guys going to ignore their egos and make a decision based on an honest analysis of what they can do and where they can do it? Taggart, IMHO, will do a better job at FSU than Rhule will do at Baylor.

      • Taggart had no idea the FSU job would open up this year.., my bet is he would have stayed at USF had he known.., Rhule at Baylor will never work..,

        FIU is better coached, they wanted this game, and they have more speed on the edges

        FIU 35 Temple 21

        Temple comes up empty in December.., on the recruiting trail and loses a bowl game for the third straight year…,

        CC’s statement about next year is a big indication his thoughts are way past this bowl game.., the season is over in his mind

      • My feeling is that there is more talent on this year’s team than next. I know Collins does this “above the line” stuff but, if you’ve followed Temple football, you pretty much know who the first-teamers are. We lose 3 starting offensive linemen, two starting wide receivers, a starting fullback, two starting edge rushers and three (possibly, four if Delvon declares) starting DBs. I don’t see that as a ridiculous GOOD team next year. We will scrape and claw to 6-7 wins again IMHO. We’re seven-point favorites in the bowl game. I hope Vegas is right.

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