No big fan of Donovan McNabb here, but his take on a controversy with Terrell Owens in 2005 applies to David Jones’ latest hit piece on Temple football almost 15 years later.
“Keep my name out of your mouth.”
Instead of “my” substitute “Temple’s” and it becomes a perfect retort.
Jones, who writes for Penn Live, had a strange take on UConn’s exit to the Big East (and apparent de-emphasis of football). He lumped UConn and Temple together, saying Temple should also de-emphasize football and insinuated that it should rejoin the A-10 at the expense of a football affiliation with the AAC.
That is a weak take on so many levels we’ll just concentrate on some here:
- One, UConn is coming off a decade of failure in football while Temple has enjoyed a decade of sustained success.
- Two, Temple is not trying to get into the P5. Sure, it would love a P5 invite but I think even the most optimistic Temple fans are not expecting one in the next decade. G5 football is a significant upgrade over FCS, though, and a proven spot where Temple can thrive. If Dave is saying the entire G5 should give up and drop to FCS, that’s one thing but I don’t think he’s saying that.
- Three, Temple earned in addition to the millions off its AAC football contract, $6 million with the Manny Diaz buyout and $2.6 million with the Geoff Collins’ buyout. Rod Carey’s buyout is $10 million. Owls are not going to leave that money on the table by dropping to FCS.
- Four, the AAC as currently constituted, is a better basketball conference than the A10 as currently constituted.
Why would Temple, which enjoys terrific football TV ratings and a steady uptick in football attendance, jeopardize any part of its football franchise to ostensibly prop up its basketball one?
I don’t know what his point was. Should Temple drop out of the G5 and the AAC even though it has the most regular-season league football wins since 2015? (More than UCF, Houston, Memphis and USF). That’s a little like the Dems asking Joe Biden to drop out before the first debate (although maybe he should drop out now after it). G5 is not big-time football but it’s certainly better for Temple than an A10 basketball/FCS football combo. (Good luck drawing flies in FCS football to the Linc.)
Plus, there is absolutely no assurance that investing in basketball at the expense of football would improve that product. Why not pursue excellence in the two marquee sports?
In college athletics, you can both walk and chew gum at the same time.
Temple can and should do both and ignore the haters who keep putting the Owls’ name in their mouths.
Monday: Our one week of vacation a year (and five best-of-TFF columns M-F)
July 8: A partnership that works
July 11: Roll call