Still unbeaten on Cherry and White Day

Great question from Shawn Pastor here about tackling in the spring

On the same day the Sixers and Phillies got embarrassed, Temple football won.

The Owls always win on Cherry and White Day. Since 1894 or thereabouts, the Owls have never lost on the middle Saturday in April. If they had an opponent who wore some color other than Cherry or White, it would be the most impressive streak in sports.

For the past 40 years or so, I’ve been to just about every one of these days and I can not remember walking away thinking the Owls did not look good. Some of the days were bitterly cold and a couple of recent ones featured driving rain.

At least the weather (78, sunny) this time was good.

This time, though, was a little different. I got that vibe early when the public address announcer said the Owls would “simulate” a punt return–with the returner catching the ball and evading two guys who did not even attempt to tackle him. Then they went to a drill with the quarterbacks throwing the ball into the end zone to wide receivers. The only thing missing were defensive backs trying to knock that ball down.

New head coach Rod Carey certainly has his way of doing things and it’s way too early to know if this is a good way or a bad one. It certainly limits the number of injuries the team has in the spring but, at some point or another, the players are going to have to put on the pads and start hitting and punt returners will have to evade guys with ill intent and quarterbacks will have to thread the needle over the outstretched fingertips of safeties and cornerbacks.

Hopefully, they will get enough of that done in the summer practices.

Put it this way: Former head coach Geoff Collins had a much more “game-like” Cherry and White experience last year and lost to Villanova in the opener. Whatever he did, it did not prepare the kids for the opening day. If the guys who were playing a glorified version of pitch and catch on Saturday get off to an unbeaten first month, Carey’s way will be a better one.

That is the litmus test of how good this team will be, not what happened on Saturday.

Unlike the Sixers on South Broad Street, there was not a single boo to be heard on North Broad.

Wednesday: Recapping Spring Ball

Friday: Checking the boxes


9 thoughts on “Still unbeaten on Cherry and White Day

  1. After the practice Saturday, I had a chance to speak to one of the coaches who said that there was no game because the team could not afford any injuries to any linemen, especially on the 0-line, because of how few quality linemen there are currently on the team. Given that, Carey acted appropriately in canceling the game. It seems that more schools every year are not having games and either are having practices or running seven on seven passing shells with no tackling. And those schools still holding games, the starters hardly play, if at all.

    • Great seeing you on Saturday. I heard an interview with the new OL coach who basically said the same thing. He said he needs eight good ones and he has eight and wants to keep them all healthy. Evenutally, though, they are going to have to knock the rust off.

    • Going to slightly disagree on that. I’ve seen: FSU, Florida, Va Tech, Notre Dame, Nebraska Alabama, Auburn, Tennessee, Clemson, Michigan State, Ohio State, Rutgers, all of them had their spring games the last couple of weeks on T.V. several starters played most of the day.

      Now, if the argument is those programs all have more depth than Temple, I can see that. If what Carey is said is true, then it’s a reasonable move, but it’s also deeply concerning that there is zero quality O-line depth.

  2. Few quality offensive linemen ?
    That’s very concerning !
    I’m assuming this is a result from our poor recruiting classes .

  3. What the heck is going on around there? Where is Temple Tuff? The AG teams had less depth, so what did they do? They hit and tackled during practice.., how do you make steel tougher? You beat it!

    One way to develop depth is to embrace the ‘next man up’ philosophy. Why did AG and MR play freshmen? They did it to create depth.

    You build ships to sail….,

    What is the correlation between the number of first and second game injuries and the number of no-hit practices? My guess less hitting results in more, not less, first and second game injuries.

    Temple Tuff to Temple Soft

  4. another thought for the Spring Game.., run an abbreviated practice with the first and second team. Play a game with your threes and fours.

  5. Owlfestivas for the rest of us!

    Feats of Strength (OL v DL)
    Need for Speed (RB v DB)
    Leaps of Faith, (WR v WR),
    Catch Me if You Can (TE v LB),
    Hide and Seek (QB v SF)
    Wire Ball (PK v P),
    Kick the Can (Cocky v Big Mouth)

  6. On upcoming NFL draft stories –
    I’m contemplating why, of al the TUFB players lucky enough to get to the NFL in past 10 years, no one makes me smile more than Tyler Mat-K our wonderful bull of an LB.

    Happy to hear Armstead is being looked, but still most pleased with Nbr 8 T M, as our biggest ‘prizefighter ‘ at TU for the past 20 years.

    I would think many others feel the same

    • Joe Klecko, Kevin Ross, Larry Johnstone, Raheem Brock, and Alshermond Singleton were all Temple Tuff Sunday players who paved the way for #8……, Jaiquawn Jarrett is the hardest hitter in TUFB history..,

      #8 was a tackling terminator.

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