Saturday against Wagner: Enjoy the (last) win

A friend of mine for many years who pretty much knows Temple sports inside out put the Rod Carey Era (Error) in perfect perspective when I posted that the Georgia Tech fans are upset with Geoff Collins.

“He’s the Milli of college football head coaches. I fear we hired the Vanilli.”

Reading that line caused me to spit out my morning coffee and laugh out loud.

So true.

The song Milli and Vanilli got caught for being fakes on was “Blame it on the Rain.”

Our Vanilli blamed a 28-3 loss on the refs yesterday.

Really, Rod?

I could see blaming a 10-7 or maybe … maybe .. a 14-3 loss on the refs but 28-3?

We are seeing the last vestiges of a head coach in trouble.

I learned a few things I suspected but did not know for sure yesterday.

The least important one was that I could not take sunscreen into the stadium so as burned up as I was on the inside that’s how it showed on the outside.

The other three are way more important.

President Wingard, please heed these words.

One, the era of the hard-ass coach is over.

Two, the schemes on both the offensive and defensive sides are ass-backwards.

Three, when you have shitty special teams and WIN the toss, please do not … I repeat DO NOT … defer for the second half. I would rather see an onsides kick than a regular one in that situation but prefer to give my offense the ball over anything else.

That kickoff return killed any home-field advantage the Owls might have had.

When freaking UMASS gives BC a better game than Temple does, you know you have COACHING problems.

Let’s take No. 1 first. Getting to know the parents in the parking lot two years ago I got the vibe that almost every kid in the program “wanted” to transfer because they didn’t, in their words, “feel” Carey.

In other words, those kids–mostly good kids from good families–saw the direction Carey was taking the program and were not on board. The kids who could take the portal route did but those who couldn’t remained. There are a lot of good kids and good players here suffering as a result. They had been through winning programs under Matt Rhule and Geoff Collins and saw a decline under Carey. So did pretty much every Temple fan.

In order to win at Temple, you can’t be a “my-way-or-the-highway” guy. You’ve got to be a coach the players BOTH love and respect. The players loved Matt Rhule and Al Golden but more importantly respected both.

You would not see the hemorrhaging of players that we have seen under Carey with either or those two guys or a number of guys who are good players’ coaches.

You can be both–a players’ coach and a respected one.

Carey is neither.

The only reason why Temple will win 60-0 this weekend is the players. Certainly not the coaches. That’s how much better Temple’s players are than Wagner’s ones. Maybe a little more. Maybe a little less but I doubt the swing will be more than 20 points either way.

Enjoy it.

It will be the last one for a long time.

The way Temple played on Saturday, I don’t see the Owls beating either USF or Navy and those are the only two hopes for wins remaining on the schedule. Navy has a far better coaching staff and USF has Florida players. Even if the Owls win both of those games, are you satisfied with four wins?

I didn’t think so.

The next move is up to the President and the Temple Board of Trustees, if they care enough to bring us back to where we were three years ago.

If they don’t, all the work that got us to where we were in 2005 until 2019 will be for naught and throwing away that work of mostly two good coaches and men would be heartbreaking.

Monday: The Temple Curse

Friday: Wagner


15 thoughts on “Saturday against Wagner: Enjoy the (last) win

  1. Great on-brand loss for the third or fourth best team in Pennsylvania. Bring on Duquesne.

  2. I was roasting in Club Level seats along with my wife on Saturday as we watched this debacle (BTW – did you know that the Owls lead the Eagles in game stats but still lost by 25 points? Penalties killed them of course)! Anyway, there were a few BC fans near us who had lots to cheer about. And I’m sure they were surprised to see that their mascot logo was painted in each end zone!

    • I’d rather win the scoreboard than the yardage battle. Carey said the two losses were “more about us than them.” Hey, do you realize you lost 61-14 and 28-3? That makes sense if it’s 21-20 and 20-17 but no sense at all when the difference is that wide.

      • I’m afraid you are right. We have been humiliated twice now with little hope of much improvement as the season moves on. I see very few (if any) favorable things being said about our current head coach and his staff, Quite the opposite actually! One would ask how we ever got to this point after those two wonderful 2015/16 seasons where we were a nationally recognized and respected program. Of course there are several things you could point to: the player transfer portal (one of the worst moves ever in college sports IMO), the coaching carousel and COVID-19 to name a few. Maybe our best hope now lies with our new president Dr. Jason Wingard (?)

  3. One other thing – it was great to see all those students present at the game. They made up a good chunk of what ESPN listed as 19,000 + in attendance. Too bad their team disappointed! They cheered anyway. God bless ’em!

    • They won’t be back. I’ve been to too many home openers where we lost (2016, Army) and the Villanova one and nobody came back. Penn State? Our next game was 35,117 against Tulane and there were zero Tulane fans there. An unbelievable missed opportunity for the Owls yesterday and their vaunted offensive line did squat to get the running game going to help the kid quarterback.

      • And how sad is that? I often think about the two 2015 sellouts against Penn State (did you see that remarkable “White Out” in Happy Valley last night?) and Notre Dame where the student section was huge and noisy! I didn’t have season tickets at the time so the only seats I could get for each game were on the visitors’ side, and being cross-field provided a terrific view of them as they cheered for our team! We thought we were on top of the college football world for those fleeting moments! College Game Day for the ND game! Doesn’t get a whole lot better than that!

  4. A couple of things Mike, both directly related to coaching.

    With the exception of the defensive holding in the second series of the game, each and EVERY Owls penalty was along the line! Then had SIX off-sides penalties and four or five false starts.

    To have the absolute gall to blame the refs for that is unbelievable. This guy needs to go this week.

    Another dismal coaching display was Jaden Blue’s punt returns. Who coached special teams? Who scouts the opponent?

    The first three punts sailed way over Blue’s head forcing him to backpedal as much as 10 yards and not giving him a shot to return the ball. Maybe the first kick surprises you, but three?? Jesus is anybody watching from the sidelines here?

    I also noticed that the team has very little speed. Seemed they were outrun all over the field.

  5. Mike, I think your point about the student athletes is important to consider, there are good kids that want to leave a high quality school. That is not normal. These kids have limited eligibility and it is being squandered under Carey. I get mad, but I’m old. These kids are playing under an inept coach that puts them 10 yards deep in their own end zone before the game starts. Wingard is smart, knowledgeable and gets the situation, it’s most likely about when to pull the trigger. My advice rip off the band aid and let’s change the direction now, could it seriously be any worse?

  6. Game comments :

    Gotta LOVE our Hi Quality special teams , that opening BC kick return was very special for sure.

    3 x on 4th and ?? we did not get it – the 1st time was what 4 th and 4 ?, What?

    The QB had a terrible game, was no one open ever ? Boy was slow in the legs and in reaction times , all the QB runs and for just about nothing, did he make more than 1 first down on his legs ?

    QB most always ONLY watched 1 receiver, just about never viewed the field.
    The FEW times TU had a chance for a new 1st down, the QB threw way too short? What ?
    *** For the last 8 minutes when Temple finally did something on “O”, its was fools gold because BC Let them do it. **** Still could not score a TD.

    Temple looked very slow on O, again, compared to BC.
    Can’t score, can’t score, can’t score.

    “D” did an OK job, considering.

    Is our HC : 1- a Dope, 2 – an Idiot, or, 3 – just taking the $$$ and doesn’t give an F anymore as he knows he is out eventually.

    Baby, Oh baby….

  7. The QB ran far too often, our top receivers couldn’t get open?; how many DEFENSIVE off sides?; special teams, oh well; simply put, we’re not competitive anymore; we need a new coach, except for that insane contract the administration gave a mediocre Carey (less than mediocre now). Temple’s mantra: shoot yourself in the foot and then see how well can do while limping around. Don’t know how much more of this I can stand to watch.

    • This is my favorite sports team … way more than the Eagles and the Phillies and Temple basketball but this is becoming impossible to watch. I won’t be at the Wagner game. That will be the third home game I’ve missed in the last 20 years (East Carolina in 2014, Bucknell in 2019 and now). I don’t think we should be scheduling the Wagners and the Bucknells of the world. If you have to beat them to get to six wins, get out of the G5 football business.

      • After Collins and Diaz, the AD/Uni Prez/BOT failed to put more rigor in the vetting process. Result: Carey.

        Impact, TUFB is arguably the least talented team in the conference. Success will never follow seven straight years of conference bottom half recruiting classes. Water does not spring from rocks.

        How can you ask student athletes to commit when the university powers aren’t committed to success. Temple should host a student/public hearing to hold the BOT accountable.


      • Mike, I am not ever mad at the Temple Owls Team, they are wonderful no matter what. We think those boys have had better coaching at High Level High School. They must see the stupidity, they must. The transfers in from other programs must be shaking their heads, hunh ??

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