TU football word of the day: Malaise

The lack of a real celebration here tells a lot..

A pretty intelligent guy who often visits the Edberg Olson Complex and has a finger on the pulse of Temple football used a word that surprised me about the general vibe around the place.

Not last night, not last week, but way back in February.

“I’ve never seen the place so dead,” he said. “There’s a malaise around the program right now with all of the players leaving and a lot of those staying unhappy. Very few of the kids like the guy (Rod Carey). He’s no Matt. He’s not even Geoff (Collins). Practices use to be fun. Hell, lifting in the offseason used to be fun. There’s no fun anymore.”

Merriam-Webster’s definition of the word malaise: “a general feeling of discomfort, illness, or uneasiness whose exact cause is difficult to identify.”

Owls used to have fun in the snow in February.
No fun under Rod Carey.

Uh-oh, I thought.

That’s one of the reasons why I went out on a limb Feb. 11 in this space and predicted a 2-10 season. I was wrong by a game. It’s going to be 3-9.

Football is a game. It should be fun. At Temple, it’s not.

That much became abundantly clear when the Owls got pushed around on Saturday night by a 1-5 USF team that hadn’t won a conference game in two years.

This coaching staff had 15 days to prepare for that 1-5 team and came out with a game plan so puzzling that just about every Temple fan got scabs from scratching their heads. After a cornerback got ran down by a tight end on a muffed field goal, I thought, “no problem. We’re going to put Tavon Ruley in there and he’s going to need no more than one or two plays to get a 7-0 lead.”


The much lighter Edward Saydee was in and stuffed on first and then they held on second down and the Owls threw an interception on the next play.

Nice drive.

The Owls didn’t adjust to a four-man front until the fourth quarter to stop the run and, by that time, it was far too late. The adjustment should have been in the first, not fourth, quarter.

You can tell a lot about a team by its body language.

The Owls seemed listless and there was nobody in the defensive huddle to fire up the troops.

Even when the Owls scored a touchdown, they were lifeless. There was almost no celebration. It was almost like a relief.

Malaise indeed.

I was tempted to go to twitter and constantly hit refresh with search items Sunday like “Rod Carey” and “Temple football” hoping for an announcement of a press conference at Sullivan Hall to fire the head coach. I didn’t bother because I know how Temple leadership makes major decisions.

History shows it’s deliberately and often too late to solve the problem. Just like the school’s football coach, they wait until the fourth quarter to solve a problem that should have been taken care of in the first.

There’s another word for that.


Friday: UCF Preview


12 thoughts on “TU football word of the day: Malaise

  1. From USF game thread (Daily Stampede):

    I will say…
    Temple’s tackling is very USF-esque

    Temple is punting on 4th down with 6 minutes left and down 3 scores!
    Are they reading our playbook?!?
    Did Jeff Scott switch sidelines?

  2. TU made a decision to ‘review’ after the season.., why wait? Status of TUFB will get worse.

    behind the scene whispers from the AAC, “we can’t count on Temple”. TU has one of the largest Athletic Dept budgets in the conference. AAC scratching their heads.., on field/court performance is terrible.

    Whispers from the AAC’s evaluation of the criterion ‘potential’, TU ranks well below UAB, No Texas, UTSA, Tulane, ECU, Memphis, and SMU.

    Another thought, Carey should do the honorable thing and resign. Where is his midwestern values?

  3. Mike, I know it’s not their course to fire a coach mid-season, but this is 2021 and college football has changed. Dr Wingard is a very intelligent individual whom I believe would fire Carey today if he had the financial ability. Wingard is a football guy in addition to imho a future great President of TU, but he is in a pickle with TU not having the dollars to buy out Carey.
    All that being said, you have to find a way to get this guy out TU football , he is simply draining the life out of the program. I don’t won’t to be a jerk and say just by looking at Carey he looks like a curmudgeon but that is the perception he emits. Perception matters. This guy can’t coach, has no energy, seems like he is doing us a favor by coaching and generally seems like a guy you don’t want to be around (i.e. transfer portal). You need enthusiasm and not the fake Nick Siriani “Dawg Mentality” enthusiasm, people see through that crap. You need a personality that draws people (recruits and parents) into your program. This guy doesn’t do any of those things. Seriously, he is like a mummy.
    Hell I’m not the biggest Geoff Collins guy but he at least smiled every once in a while and he had some moxy and energy. This program is screwed. Dr Wingard I hope just takes the hit and moves on. Not after the season. But now. This program is the walking dead.

  4. All those programs striving to get better….TU doing the TU thing….mucking it up….as usual.

    • Amen to that Brian – mucking it up as usual. Most of Temple’s teams are not doing well and yet they keep spending lots of money but with poor results. Why? If they keep Carey he will ruin the football program which is why it would be worth it to buy him out sooner than later – and do a much better job on the next hire and contract.

      • A true story today that I heard from two reliable sources that were there. One of the kids yelled very loudly (right behind Carey) with 11 minutes in the fourth quarter: “OH NOW WE’RE GOING TO A FOUR-MAN FRONT!” Carey must’ve have heard it because he shook his head sideways, said nothing and walked away. The mutiny has already begun.

  5. I’m surprised nothing posted here on Nick Bags entering the transfer portal. heard two completely opposite stories. One is ‘meh’, and the other is more of coaching staff shortcomings.

    • The coaching staff story is that Bags’ mom is moving and Bags has to go with her. I’m not buying it. Kid has a schollie, a free place to stay at Temple and all the food he wants to eat plus a stipend from the uni. He can afford to move at the end of the season. I think the more likely reason is he’s a natural tackle (not nose guard) and doesn’t want anymore NG film put out there.

  6. Mike,
    It’s 42-0. I have to go fish even though river is blown out. This is downright embarrassing. Screw waiting until the end of the season, end this coaching farce either tonight, tomorrow or Monday. I will lose significant confidence in Wingard if he doesn’t pull the trigger at this point. This program is in deep peril. Tight Lines,


    Temple only team in FBS that has 2 former coaches in NFL. Carey could be #3. HAHAHAHAHAH

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