Temple’s recruiting reset button


You’ll be reading a lot about politics (though not here) in the next year and one of those things might be about this political candidate or that one hitting the “reset button.”

That got me to thinking about what all these coaching changes Temple has had in the last half-decade or so has done to recruiting. AMR (after Matt Rhule), both Geoff Collins and even Rod Carey now have had classes where they could at best provide a band-aid here and band-aid there in areas the Owls need immediate help.

That is an apt characterization of the first recruiting classes of both.

Now Carey, with a $10 million buyout that even a Power 5 school would think twice before eating, has an opportunity to hit the recruiting reset button. Let’s hope he takes it because a couple of band-aid-type classes thrown in every few years depletes the roster and a depleted roster eventually shows up on the field. The latest promising addition is running back Jeremiah Nelson and he put a lot of good moves on film, both at Iona Prep and Nassau County Community College.


Carey certainly has his own recruiting ideas from six successful seasons at Northern Illinois but Temple needs to aspire to get a higher level of recruit and has the geography to do it. NIU wasn’t located in the middle of 46 percent of the nation’s population, as Temple is, so the formula for the Owls would be 1-5 projects that the staff really likes on film and the rest three- and four-star prospects that not only the Temple staff likes but every paid P5 staff out there likes.

Trust, but verify.

“My recruiting philosophy is simply this: Recruit an entire team every year. Eleven guys on defense, 11 guys on offense and a couple of specialists and you are never going to leave yourself short.” _ Al Golden

Temple has a lot to sell. Twenty-four current players in the NFL speaks well for the opportunity to play one part of your career in an NFL stadium and finish up the rest of it in another NFL stadium. That, plus the fact that Temple is a proven winner. Since 2015, the Owls have won one AAC title, appeared in another and have won more AAC football games than anyone else, including UCF, USF and Memphis. Plus, the school is nationally known as the sixth-largest educator of professionals so that sheepskin is something to fall back on should a pro football career not be in the offing. It’s in the middle of an exciting city and, unlike, say, Penn State,  not situated in the middle of nowhere. That appeals to “regular students” and it should also appeal to dynamic football players.

Fortunately, Carey has a gem like Fran Brown to head up the recruiting effort. In recruiting, Brown is the starting pitcher and Carey has to be the closer. Brown knows how Al Golden and Rhule build this team from the national bottom 10 to respectability.

“My recruiting philosophy is simply this,” Golden said when he got the Temple job. “Recruit an entire team every year. Eleven guys on defense, 11 guys on offense and a couple of specialists and you are never going to leave yourself short.”

That kind of sound thinking is the Cherry and White reset button Temple recruiting needs to hit now.

Saturday: The Long Game

Wednesday: The Bright Side


6 thoughts on “Temple’s recruiting reset button

  1. interesting opinion piece on the AAC starting QBs for 2019…,


    A low 3-star, Desmond Riddick didn’t receive many offers, outplayed almost everybody last year and was named AAC rookie of the year. Interesting Cincy didn’t offer Russo out of high school….., Temple will beat Cincy this year if Russo can outplay Riddick. Bottom line is that the AAC is offense centric, and the team with better play at QB wins over 80% of the time.

    Temple needs a fresh recruiting approach informed by past success. Recruiting tenants:
    * Recruit a complete team every year, period.
    * Recruit a minimum of one four star athlete every year because four-stars beget four-stars. The value of four-stars has been argued about for years…, just one question. How many teams are there in the Top 20 every year w/o a four-star on the roster? Very few.
    * Dominate the geographic radius, get the diamonds in our own backyard.
    * Capitalize on the new reality, the transfer portal.

    Teams slow to adapt and capitalize on the transfer portal will suffer. It needs to be a part of Carey’s strategy for increasing overall team speed and talent level.

    Has anyone asked Carey about his recruiting philosophy?

    • to KJ’s point. Rutgers went 1-11 and they still pulled

      – Drew Singleton (4* LB from Michigan)
      – Matt Alimo ( 3* TE from UCLA)
      – Mclane Carter (3* QB from Texas Tech)
      -Kyle Penniston (3* TE from Wisconsin) (grad transfer)

      In the off season from the portal. Mad that Vandy OL didn’t stay with us through the signing class.

    • My problem with Collins’ recruiting was it was Florida and Georgia-centric. It was like he was telegraphing to Temple people he was heading south. With Carey, judging from a recent NIU class, looks pretty similar to Golden’s. You can sub out Illinois and the midwest in this quote for Pennsylvania and the East:
      “NIU’s signing day roster consists of 12 offensive players, 10 on the defensive side of the ball, one athlete and one specialist, and hail from eight different states. NIU stayed close to home, signing 10 players from the state of Illinois and seven from Wisconsin. The Huskies also branched out, picking up two recruits from Ohio and one each from Indiana, Florida, Michigan, Georgia and Alabama.

      “It starts with Illinois and it’s never going to stray far from home,” Carey said of his recruiting philosophy. “This is our home state, this is where we get our guys and this is always where we’re going to get our guys. Wisconsin, with that state being so close to us, the ties we have there and the success we’ve enjoyed there historically, is always going to be a key place for us to recruit.

      “Reaching out to places like Indiana, Detroit, Alabama, and Florida, where we’ve had a lot of success in recent years, not only with Coach Doeren but with Coach Kill, it is important to keep those ties going. When you branch far out, it’s more about the connections and ties you have there. When you’re closer to home, it’s about a blanket, making sure everyone knows about us.”

  2. Carey just got former PSU player Ayron Monroe in the transfer portal. This is a big deal. The kid can play and his presence makes the d-backfield several notches better.

    • great news. Temple needs to attack the transfer portal

      • wow…, the D is stout.., any word on Hand’s eligibility? Depth at DT remains the only concern.

        Also adding Monroe is an early indication of less press and more zone.

        That will be an interesting strategy to watch. The AAC is a three step drop back league. Playing zone against ECU, Memphis, UCF, USF gives them the easy 5-7 yard completion. Temple has not used zone as the base pass coverage since D’Onofrio….,

        Momentum creates perpetual optimism. Can Carey go 5-0 going into the Memphis game? If so, watch out for the Owls.

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