One of the reasons I declined initial overtures to be invited back at the beginning of the season into the most popular Temple football facebook group after a hiatus was some of the attitudes of the posters.
It’s not like Temple
is asking UConn or
ECU to win a game.
It’s asking good teams
to beat other good teams
For just one example (of many), the way any discussion of a game past the next one was rebuffed by some (err, most) with this inane response: “Let’s beat (XXXXX) first before we can discuss (YYYYY).”
Like a group of fans on a facebook page talking about future games had any impact on what happened on the field in the next one. Now that’s a crazy thought, even crazier than what we’re about to discuss in this post. You can only beat your head against a wall so much before walking away from the wall.
That is there. This is here.
Hell, beating Tulane is the most important thing but we can dream about sitting next to the trophy again on the team bus in December and let the players chew Green Wave gum for a game scheduled on 11/16 at the same time.
Taking one game at a time is the job of the kids and the coaches.
Fans? Not so much.
Thanks in part to a miracle provided by a winless (in the league) Tulsa team over a team that scored 63 points on the Owls (UCF), an American Athletic Conference championship isn’t all that crazy to think about anymore.
At least for Temple. For purposes of this post, we won’t talk about the injuries or any problems the team has on offense or defense but just about beating the three teams left on the schedule.
Cincinnati–a team Temple has beaten four-straight times–still holds all the cards but that doesn’t mean it is going to collect the chips.
Or, as the kids say, the chip.
It basically comes down to this:
- Temple wins out;
- UCF loses at Tulane;
- Cincinnati loses to Memphis
Then, the Owls could play a title game in Memphis. Tough, yes. Crazy? No. It’s not like Temple is asking UConn or ECU to win a game. It’s asking good teams to beat other good teams and, if it is a good team, it can win three-straight games, two at home.
Based on the above-bulleted scenario, Temple would hold the tie-breaker against Cincy based on head-to-head competition. UCF would drop out with its third league loss.
Tulane has an offense similar to the one UCF brought to Philadelphia so that must’ve factored into the Green Wave entering the week as a four-point favorite and quickly dropped to 3.5 and now 3 at the time of this post. Still, with the brutal weather forecast, that might be a mitigating factor in the Owls’ favor. Temple went down to ECU and beat the Pirates more comfortably than Cincinnati did and the Cincy offense isn’t that crazy wide-open type that seemingly gives the Owls fits and Temple seems to match up favorably with the Bearcats.
Tulane is a far better team than Tulsa and, without a championship on the line, UCF could pack it in there. With SMU nipping at Memphis’ heels, the Tigers know they have to beat Cincinnati at home to host an AAC title game and would be extremely motivated to do so. Memphis holds first tie-breakers over SMU and Navy.
The beneficiary in all of this could be Temple if the Owls can play the way they did against Memphis or even Georgia Tech.
Temple can only control what it can control and, if the Owls and their fans bring the noise on Saturday, they get one step closer to the most improbable championship ever.
Yeah, I know let’s worry about Tulane first. Me musing about a championship has no impact of what the kids do on the field this Saturday.
It’s called multitasking.
Thursday: Stopping The Spread Option