Tulane has the right approach

Tulane v Temple

Temple goes on the road to play Tulane, which has two road P5 games.

Even though Temple beat a very good Tulane team last year, there is no denying the Green Wave is on the rise.

This year, if there is this year, they are poised to take advantage.

Tulane’s non-conference schedule has been ranked No. 1 by college football expert Tom Fornelli in the AAC and that’s probably the model Temple should pursue in the not-too-distant future.

Cincinnati v Tulane

Consider this: Tulane returns 14 of 22 starters from a bowl team and runs a unique zone bluff option type offense that is easier to pass off than, say, Army and Navy. It’s an offense few teams run and makes Tulane a tough team to prepare for in a one-week situation. Most P5 teams go up against a read-option and facing a different style makes it a tough team to prepare against.

Temple used to be that way as the Owls ran power football with a fullback for most of the Matt Rhule and Al Golden years. Since P5 teams didn’t see that style, the Owls had a fair share of success against more talented foes.

This is my favorite Rhule quote about Temple football from a Paul Myerberg piece in USA Today:

“”HOW DO WE DIFFERENTIATE OURSELVES? HOW DO WE MAKE OURSELVES HARD TO PREPARE FOR? PUT TWO BACKS ON THE FIELD. PUT TWO TIGHT ENDS ON THE FIELD. THIS IS WHAT YOUR ROOTS ARE. THESE KIDS HAVE MADE THEMSELVES REALLY TOUGH. AND THAT’S THE ONLY WAY WE’LL EVER WIN. BY BEING A REALLY, REALLY TOUGH FOOTBALL TEAM.”” _ MATT RHULE

Now it appears Tulane has adopted its own way to make it a difficult-to-prepare-for opponent.

Tulane goes on the road against Northwestern and Mississippi State and I like that scheduling. Both are P5 teams but both are beatable and winning those games would be a boost to the entire conference and not just Tulane.

Temple plays a home game against P5 bottom-feeder Rutgers and a road game against much-improved (at least from a personnel standpoint) Miami. However, if the Owls bring that read-option style to Miami with a classic pocket passer in Anthony Russo, they are going to get hammered by outside pass rushers Quincy Roche and Gregory Rousseau, who could both go in the first round of the NFL draft. Establish an inside running game to avoid those two ends and then throwing off play-fakes would probably mitigate the rush. Does Rod Carey go outside of his comfort zone to attack the weakness of his opponent?

We didn’t see much evidence of last in his last game.

Hopefully, his next game plan is the polar opposite of that one.

Monday: Drop dead date

 

9 thoughts on “Tulane has the right approach

  1. And they should get a couple nice paydays as well. That’s what
    TU is missing by continuing to schedule weakilings….and then paying them!

    • Agree. Plus, it’s not helping the school’s overall profile. Going down to Vandy and beating them 37-7 and going down to Maryland and beating them 35-14 and 38-7 does. Can’t have that opportunity if you don’t upgrade the schedule.

  2. No doubt that TU needs to play better non-conference teams with a couple of caveats. First, playing more than two middle of the pack P-5 teams a season could result in more injuries, which would affect the conference schedule. Almost every P-5 team is deeper and is filled with mostly high three star and low four star recruits. It is guaranteed that Tulane will take a physical beating in its two P-5 games. Second, while TU doesn’t participate in the better bowl games, making one is important for PR, recruiting, and the extra month of practice.

    If you look at their future schedules, they have two P-5 games a season through 2027:2020-MIami, Rutgers, 2021 Rutgers, BC, 22 -Duke, Rutgers, 23 Rutgers,Miami, 24 Oklahoma, UConn (24 only has three non-conference games so far), Oklahoma, GT, and Umass, 26, PSU, UConn with an open spot, and 27-PSU, UConn with an open spot, I agree that the games against Villanova division teams needs to aim for better teams but adding another middle of the pack P-5 team might cause more harm than good.

    • Had a brain freeze on UConn. They are not a P-5 team. However, in the years they play UConn only three non-conference games are currently scheduled so that spot could be filled with a P-5 team.

  3. This is happening at UConn: “The school will be eliminating men’s cross country, men’s swimming and driving, men’s tennis and women’s rowing teams due to budget cuts related to the virus following the 2020-21 academic year.” Expect similar cuts at dozens of schools.

  4. I think the Miami game, if it actually happens, will be a HUGE test for Carey.

    Yes, the Canes are clearly ahead of the Owls as far as talent, but can there be a better opportunity to motivate a team than this opponent?

    Head coach walks away from Temple after 2 weeks on the job, defensive captain leaves teammates in the dust for said opponent.

    If Carey has any real coaching ability, he will have these guys fired up like the football scene from FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH!

    • I like Fran but would not use him as a drop-back passer like Tom Brady. Carey is trying to make Anthony into a Lamar Jackson (which he is not). Let’s go with old-style Sonny Jurgensen/Norm Van Brocklin/Roman Gabriel/Matty Baker/Lee Saltz/ type offense with AR-15. Carey and his staff think every quarterback can win with Jordan Lynch-type skills. Need to adjust your offensive scheme to fit the talent of the guy you have. Can win with both styles but not by forcing the round peg (Anthony) into the square hole (NIU offense(.

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