For nearly two weeks now, the Temple football twitter site promoted July 4th fireworks with at least a hint or two that a big-time recruit will be committing on that day.
That’s the deal with fireworks. The more promises you make, the greater the expectations. Sometimes they go off in multi-colored extravaganzas and sometimes they blow up in your face. This latest rollout qualified more in the latter category than the former from what I can see.
Our thoughts on Temple football recruiting, particularly since Al Golden brought his binder to town, have simply been this:
TRUST BUT VERIFY.
The Philly.com article did not mention where the six July 4 commits received offers from in addition to Temple, but Shawn Pastor’s excellent site, OwlsDaily.com, did. One of them was Kennique Bonner-Steward, a 6-4, 215-pound, dual-threat quarterback from William Amos High in Cornelius, N.C. Bonner-Steward had 17 offers, most from FCS schools and his top “other” FBS offers were from Tulane, Old Dominion and Georgia State (err, not Tech).
This is the spin Pravda–otherwise known as Owlscoop.com–put on the day:
A little misleading as an astute guy named Steve correctly pointed out:
You will never, ever, ever, find Pravda criticize a Temple football recruiting class perhaps because the editor of that site is a paid Temple employee. Everything ranks from honky-dory to downright spectacular over there. Just a theory based on years of observation.
Speaking of which, that elicited a very defensive response from Gauss’ boss (John DiCarlo, above). What the hell does Tyler, Tavon, Dion, Matt and Nate have to do with Collins under-performing against P5 competition this year? And what, exactly, did Collins have to do with developing any of those above players?
The answer would be zero.
Just because Matt Rhule got the job done doesn’t mean Collins will do the same.
The other commitments were running back Jamal Speaks (Upper Marlboro, Md), Tampa (Fla.) wide receiver Josh Youngblood and two defensive linemen from Georgia, Zaylin Wood and Jacoby Sharpe. Speaks had an offer from Maryland and Youngblood had an offer from Minnesota so, on the day, those are the two most-high profile Temple recruits.
Not the kind of fireworks we were looking for considering that the Owls were able to land much-higher profile guys under both Golden and Rhule.
Here’s another take calling out Pravda:
Temple football has a highly paid staff of professionals in charge of these things but the thought out there is that other schools have more highly paid professionals in charge of the same things and that if the two ever agreed on a player that would be a good thing, not a bad one.
Temple is never going to win all the battles with the so-called Power 5 schools for players, but our formula for long-term success is that Temple should win at least a few of them—anything from a quarter to a half—and then trust its instincts on other type players.
Those instincts have served other staffs well with guys like Muhammad Wilkerson (a two-star who turned into a first-round NFL draft choice) and Haason Reddick, a walk-on who was a higher first-round choice. Then there is Tyler Matakevich, who turned his only offer (Temple) into a national consensus defensive player of the year (Bednarik, Nagurski Awards).
Those are the exceptions, though, to the general college football rule. The really successful programs develop players in addition to be able to win a majority of recruiting battles.
Ideally, that’s the kind of recruiting balance you are looking for in a good class. This one has leaned in the developmental direction and, while that might turn out to be a good thing, it leans more toward risk than reward.
No matter how Pravda spins it.