Another five or so years pass another Temple football incoming head coach presser.
Those of us Temple football fans approaching the half-century mark of these (meekly raising my hand here) know the drill.
Hope for the best, expect the worst.
It’s a hard lesson taught by Father Time.
Stan Drayton seems like a very nice guy and he, like so many first-time Temple head coaches, said all of the right things.
Yet I can’t get out of my head that this was another crony hire and neither of the past two cronies worked.
If former Texas Director of Football Operations Arthur Johnson hired anyone else other than a Texas assistant coach for the Temple job, I would have felt a little better today because the past two Temple ADs who tried the same thing fell on their faces.
LaSalle University second baseman Bill Bradshaw hired his old shortstop, Fran Dunphy, to follow John Chaney, tossing underhanded the storied basketball franchise. Dunphy pivoted and threw that ball over the dugout for a run-scoring error.
Indiana football player and 2000 grad Pat Kraft hired another Indiana former football player and 1995 grad Rod Carey and that was a fumble picked up by the bad guys and run the other way for six.
Now you tell me that of the dozens of qualified people who applied for this job, Drayton was hired NOT because he knew Johnson at Texas but because he was the best man for the job?
Hard to believe, Harry.
Pretty much the day after Carey was fired, I wrote in this space that I had the “sinking feeling” that Drayton would get the job because of the proclivity of Temple ADs to go for comfort level rather than getting the best guy for the job.
That was three years after and BEFORE Manny Diaz got the Temple job that I had a “sinking feeling” that Diaz would get it because I knew Pat Kraft was enamored with the “hot coordinator” hire. Then, when Kraft was dumped by the hot chick, he went to the comfortable 2 a.m. drunk option: Carey. Before Kraft could turn on the lights and see the ugly person he was sleeping with, he put on his pants and headed off to Boston College.
Thanks for the visual, Pat.
Now, like with Jerry Berndt, Ron Dickerson, and Bobby Wallace, we can only hope for the best with Drayton.
Geez, I hope the guy wins a national championship–or at least an AAC one–but I’ve seen this rodeo before.
When Peter J. Liacouras hired Dickerson in 1992, Ron said: “I think I can do for Temple football what coach (John) Chaney has done for Temple basketball. We want to be nationally prominent.” Dickerson finished 8-47 at Temple.
When Jerry Berndt was hired in 1989, he said at his presser: “The potential here is too good to pass up.” Berndt finished 11-33 at Temple.
All of you who follow this space know I was for the “sure thing” hire and, to me, that was Al Golden.
I was not a big proponent of Fran Brown but seeing the support for him from recent Temple alumni (and almost all of the guys currently in the NFL from Temple), I thought getting those guys behind the program was more important than satisfying the new AD’s comfort level. Drayton’s hiring was panned pretty much by every current Temple NFL player who chimed in on Twitter Thursday. All-time quarterback P.J. Walker tweeted simply: “Temple coach, LOL!” Numerous area high school coaches, like the current one at Northeast High in Philadelphia and the current one at Lakewood (N.J.) tweeted that Temple blew it with this hire, knowing that Brown wanted the job.
I’d rather have P.J.’s support than not. You can toss in Sean Chandler, Haason Reddick and pretty much every prominent ex-Owl. I’d rather have local high school coaches screaming their support of this hire on both sides of the river. Instead, opposition or stone-cold silence was the pervasive reaction on Thursday.
Call me crazy, but that’s the logic.
Drayton will be swimming upstream against all that but he will have Johnson pushing him in a motorboat against the initial tide.
For all Temple football fans, let’s pray to God that’s enough.
Monday: What Stan did not say
Friday: Quick Turnaround
Monday (12/28): Stopping the bleeding