TU Football 2020: Tragicomedy

A play containing both elements of tragedy and comedy is called a tragicomedy and, after six games, that’s is probably the best word to describe Temple’s 2020 football season.

Tragedy, because an inordinate number of players have gotten either sick or injured and an undermanned team going into the season just cannot afford that.

This is the guy who turned Temple’s special teams from No. 1 in the nation to No. 130, but he’s a friend of Rod Carey, so that’s got to count for something.

Comedy, because we already knew Temple’s special teams were the Keystone Cops last year and nothing that has happened this year has changed that. The program says Brett Diersen is both the “outside linebackers coach/special teams coordinator” but he might as well be Charlie Chaplin. Special teams are not supposed to made your opponent laugh, but that’s what Temple’s have done for nearly two years under CEO Rod Carey. Outside linebackers aren’t much better, but this is the guy Carey jettisoned Temple legendary ST coach Ed Foley for and he had that aspect of the team on auto pilot for nearly a decade.

You can’t have both tragedy and comedy in both areas and be a successful football team and the Owls proved that for the fifth time this season in a 38-13 loss at Central Florida on Saturday night.

What is Rod Carey football when it comes to special teams?

Rod Carey football is having a slow white guy return punts and I can say that because I’m a slow white guy. The difference being that I’m a boomer and Carey has slow white guys in their 20s returning punts. In a school with athletes out the wazoo like Temple, there should be at least 10 in the football program who can both catch a punt and make the first guy miss, let alone the rest of the student body of nearly 40,000 full-time students.

Carey is obviously satisfied with just catching the ball and getting the offense started. That would be understandable if the Temple offense could do anything, but it can’t. You’ve got to make the punt return a dangerous offensive play, just like it used to be at Temple when guys like Matty Brown, Delano Green and even Isaiah Wright (the Wright of Geoff Collins, not Carey) were the returners.

What is Rod Carey football?

Rod Carey football is not even going after the punt when the UCF punter has to kick with his foot near the back of the end zone. Every other recent Temple coach would have had a jailbreak punt block on in that situation.

Not Rod Carey. Why make the punter uncomfortable when you can just let him get off a 50-yard punt?

Rod Carey football is kicking a field goal down 38-10 for window dressing when he could have rolled his quarterback out on a run/pass option for a touchdown with eight minutes left.

Rod Carey football is not challenging a call when his freshman wide receiver makes a spectacular catch with his foot inbounds with four minutes left.

If there’s one constant about Carey’s approach to the game is that he plays it way too passive and his team has adopted the personality of their head coach.

It would be funny if it weren’t so sad.

Monday: Fizzy’s Corner


19 thoughts on “TU Football 2020: Tragicomedy

  1. Absolutely correct. Total shit show of a coach. He has set the team back to 10+ years ago before Al Golden. Bring Al Golden back please anybody!

  2. Good description of Carey’s version of Temple football. I am an Alum, season ticket holder, and I turned the UCF game off after five minutes. I already knew the outcome. Under Carey, this team has no Soul, no Passion, and worst of all, NO DIRECTION. If I could see that after five minutes or less, guess what the opposition sees! Send Carey back to the MAC.!

  3. Well, at least they covered in this one! Lol!

    Mike, how can we come up with a category for what we might call an “ass-kicking”? Three scores? 20 plus point loss? I’m sure we could come up with a consensus here.

    Either way, this bozo Carey has certainly had more than his fair share over his first 18 games or so. At least 6 so far right? Maybe 7-8? He’s gotta be every bit as bad as Dickerson or Wallace by that measure.

  4. There were some hopeful things coming out of the game. They didn’t hang a hundred on the Owls which was a possibility after the first six minutes. The fourth team QB looked like he belonged. Kids who never had any chance of playing when the season started have seen playing time. By the way, how do any of you know how fast the punt returner is? The kid had no running room on almost all of the punts and at least tried to return one. A little stereotyping there? Again, there is not a coach in the country who could win with high two star and low three star players as his starters. Over half the team that that started last night are second teamers or worse. The owls did not quit last night which itself is a hopeful sign.

  5. One more thing. Did anyone notice how poorly UCF’s second team looked when they went in? That alone shows why the Owls are having the trouble they are having.

  6. We’ve got some of the toughest young men around on this team and this coach is doing them a disservice.
    Plain and simple- his level of professionalism isn’t even with his players.
    I’ll send an email to coach Dunphy, for whatever its worth. Coach Carey has to go.


    • I wish Carey yelled as hard at the officials who allowed that blatant PI against Mack in the end zone as he did at Mack for complaining about it. Stick up for your players. That’s why the only door that works at the E-O is marked exit and not entrance.

    • I’m missing the point? You try to win with a third string QB who supposedly can run the RPO but who has shown that he really is not as adept at it as he thinks he is and who just got to Temple. To add the picture, you win with mostly second and third teamers who missed Spring ball and had limited practices because of covid. I dare you. There is absolutely no scheme Carey could run successfully at this time given the players he has at his disposal and the level of competition his undermanned team is facing. Lets see how things go next Saturday against a team they should beat even though the Owls are undermanned. Bet the Owls look much improved.

  8. Another example of poor coaching, courtesy of today’s Orlando Sentinel:
    During the next possession, linebacker Tatum Bethune stepped in front of a Temple receiver for an interception at the Owls’ 27-yard line. Three plays later, Otis Anderson bounced off several defenders before diving into the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown to push the lead to 14-0.

    “The first time around they ran the same play and I got blocked and they got the first down,” Bethune said of the play. “But then I saw the same formation, the same dudes lined up, so I knew it was coming. So I just reacted.”

    My reaction: When you line up the “dudes” in the same formation, don’t run the same play. Run another play. Chances are Bethune would be somewhere else. When a UCF guy can figure this stuff out, how many of our opponents routinely figure similar calls out? Fortunately, we weren’t playing Harvard.

  9. Most of the people on this site lack any sense of reality. Your posts are essentially saying that Carey doesn’t care about winning and is mailing it in. That’s utterly ridiculous. The guy had no problem beating P-5 schools both at NIU and last season at TU. HE HAS A DEPLETED ROSTER and is stuck using second, third, and fourth teamers. That necessarily means that he cannot implement the game plans he would like to and must simplify themt on both sides of the ball. For example on defense the original starting linebackers could be expected to cover a back or tight end on pass plays. Second and third teamers cannot so that takes away man to man defenses. Yea Carey could have switched to the offense Rhule ran. However, he was stuck with two recruiting classes selected by Collins who recruited players to run the RPO. On offense, it’s clear the kid from ISU can’t or won’t throw passes longer than ten -15 yards at this point in his career. That’s not Carey’s fault. And to the guy that responded to my previous post and criticized him for taking the ISU qb, I’m sure that he didn’t sign him for this season because he expected Russo to be his starter for the entire season. TU does not have the luxury of getting recruits who can be expected to step in and contribute right away. Hey, I am aware that Carey could be doing things differently; I’m saying that given the injuries, graduations, defections, and covid losses, any faults he has have played a minor part in the team’s record. Compared to Franklin at PSU and Harbaugh at Michigan, both of whom have teams filled with top fifteen recruiting classes, Carey is doing much better than them with a quarter of the talent.

    • The point of the article is about special teams and how coach Carey supports Dierson who obviously is not qualified. Who coaches the coach? How does Dierson learn and become better. He does not listen mb to anyone and he is a know it all. He is not qualified what so ever to coach special teams. Look at the record. Look at the stats. His punter was featured twice on “C’mon man” in ESPN and Dierson makes no adjustments. He had a seven yard punt. The punter is a joke, but what is worse is that Dierson can’t “coach him up”. He is asking the punter to do things that he can’t do. I feel sorry for the punter. Real kicking coaches just shake their heads.

      They take Bowlers scholarship and give it to a ju-co punter that no one else wanted. Bowler goes to Charlotte and his stats are way better than Barry. Barry’s net return yards are equivalent to a high school punter if you look at the stats. It’s all about net yards, NOT how far you can kick a ball. Dierson he just doesn’t understand. I understand that Carey needs to support the choices he made to bring these coaches in, otherwise he looks like a idiot. He listens to recommendations from Kornblue kicking rather than kohl’s or chris sailer. Carey will publicly support his coach, but he has to know that he needs to make changes. Dierson doesn’t end up as the worst and very last FBS rated special teams without knowing he is out of his league. FOLEY had special teams ranked as one of the best in FCS. Dierson’s special teams would rank 200th if you add in FCS, d2 and even D3.

      If you don’t agree, look up the field goal stats for D3. Look up the net yards and distance for punting. Kicking stats for high school makes Temple look like they need to make some Coaching changes. That falls on Carey. The guy who gave away Bowlers scholarship and had a real place kicker transfer to Boston College. That’s what this article was about and it’s spot on. Temple needs a real special teams coach. They have assistant coaches on staff now that would be better than Dierson.

  10. John,
    Stop w the 2nd and third team excuses. Injuries happen to every team and those that are coached well deal with adversity. You talk about COVID and limited practices? I guess Temple is the only program that had to deal with those issues. Maybe he’d have more depth if he recruited better and more importantly retained Talented players.

    John, you are funny. You bet they will be improved next week, they can’t get much worse. Their schedule is no juggernaut, are you sure you are not Carey’s wife on a burner account? Guy is way out of his league, he was bad last year, this year will be worse and next year after another lousy year they will fire him (a year too late).

    Program is turning into a joke. No scheme he could run to compete? Forget scheme maybe coach up special teams.

    This guy is going to set this program back years.

    • That’s not reality when more than 2/3 of the starters aren’t playing. Name more than position on the team TU started yesterday where TU had a player better than UCF had. I bet no one can find three even including Blue because the UCF receivers are better. I was on the team in the 70’s and although Wayne Hardin could steal a game every now and then despite having inferior talent, there were several games where that just didn’t happen and TU got blown out. Wayne could have coached the best game of his life and his teams still would have looked bad because of inferior talent. No doubt that this season will hurt the brand, something I said many times previously. That doesn’t mean that one should lose grasp of reality. This team lacks talent because of five horrendous recruiting classes and is losing for reasons having nothing to do with Carey’s deficiencies. Scheming means absolutely nothing when you can’t block or tackle better than your opponents do. Tell me how scheming would give a d-back speed he doesn’t have to cover a faster wide receiver or a linemen the ability to block a bigger, faster, opponent. No one’s happy about the current situation but taking it all out on the coach while ignoring the thousand other reasons this team stinks wreaks of insanity. TU football has been, even in the best seasons, a balancing act that depended a lot on luck because of the lack of depth. Imagine that they had lost PJ or other key player. They had no one to replace them and those seasons would have been less successful. I’m not drinking the Kool-Aid without someone laying out alternative game plans that would be more successful while using the same talent currently playing.

  11. Muschamp getting an SEC job after his Fla Gator failure was insane. It reminded me of the NBA coaching carousel like Cotton FitzSimmons and other mediocre types just getting hired over and over again.

    Colin Thompson caught a TD pass today for the Carolina Panthers. He was under-utilized in the passing game while w the Owls. As was another TE talent Evan Rodriguez.

    Rumors abound about a second Covid Lockdown….. Will ECU and Cinci be allowed to have fans?:

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