This Week In TU Football: The Padre Pio Factor


Signing day is almost as important for the Owls as the bowl game itself.

As a kid growing up in Catholic school, I was told that Padre Pio—the newly minted Saint—could be in two places at one time.

It’s easy to be both skeptical and fascinated by the possibility. Try as I might, I’ve never been able to master the art of bilocation.

Too bad Geoff Collins hasn’t, either.

Collins will only seem to be in two places at one time this week, culling a recruiting class that needs several signatures by Wednesday and then coaching a football game his university desperately needs to win on Thursday, but that’s the task he has been given.

While both are important, the No. 1 priority should be winning the bowl game for a couple of reasons.

One, the school has only won two games in its history.

Two, as important as recruiting is, the end game of that endeavor has always been to identify enough talent that can win championships and, failing that, bowl games.

To be fair, it’s also the task that faces Florida International University head coach Butch Davis but the pressure to win now is greater for Collins because he has to replace so much of the guts of not only a 6-6 Temple team, but a 10-2 one. A rather convincing argument can be made that guys like Nick Sharga, Keith Kirkwood, Adonis Jennings, Artrel Foster, Sean Chandler and Jacob Martin contributed as much to that championship as P.J. Walker, Jahad Thomas, Hassan Reddick, Avery Williams, Averee Robinson and Colin Thompson did. It’s the reason why we think this team should have won either eight or nine games, not six or seven. The schemes, especially on offense, wasted a Mother lode of talent.

The case is that the Owls will be two years removed from the guts of a championship team and those losses could be felt more severely next year than this one. A great haul on early signing day followed by the momentum of a bowl win would reassure any doubting Thomases out there but that’s a different Saint for a different day.

Wednesday: Bowl Preview

Friday: Bowl Analysis

Monday: The Early Haul

11 thoughts on “This Week In TU Football: The Padre Pio Factor

  1. I’m relieved that the bowl game is the 21st, after the first early signing day.

  2. TU hired GC because he can recruit, coach, and chew gum at the same time.

  3. Mike: The side tweet says looks like stadium negotiations went well. Can you elaborate?

    How does recruiting look so far? At 24 commits, that seems encouraging. And I like that 6 OL’s have committed. Seems that’s always tough to get a good crop of those. Curious though about 2 coming from Sweden. My first reaction was: Are they for real?

    • Recruiting looks great. Somewhat concerned they made a reach for the Conestoga Valley WR who didn’t get any FBS offers. Like the fact that the Owls beat out Mississippi State for Beatty. No matter how good Trad is, don’t see him starting over Nutile if Nutile has another spectacular game in the bowl tilt. As far as the negotiations, the tweet had Englert with a smiling Darryl Clarke, who was the biggest obstacle to the stadium. The two had an icy relationship until recently. Maybe they came to an agreement on closing 15th Street for two years.

      • what do you mean? Jose Barbon was a 3-way All State player, you never pass up on talent like that no matter how many offers he has.

      • Okay, upon further research, he was a 3-way all conference player in which he was the DB, WR, and ST player of the year and made it to the 5A all-state team. His only other FBS offer was UMass and had a walk-on offer from PSU.

    • Centeio reminds me of Lenny WIlliams, the kid who became a superstar at IUP and led them to a nice Division II run. Same size, same speed, same elusiveness, same throwing motion.

      • Centeio has the “it”, he is much better than Williams in every measurable.., he would be starter on many Power 5 teams right now…, don’t think he will stay on campus much longer

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