Monday, September 5, 2011

MAC haters and Temple

I don't see Temple taking a step back in this video at all.
When I listen to an opinion, I usually consider the source and break it down into three levels of credibility:
Those who know a lot.
Those who know a little.
Those who know nothing.
You can put practically the entire MAC into the second and third category when talking about Temple University's football team.
The notion that "Temple will take a step back without Al Golden" is widely regarded as gospel in the MAC community. Temple fans know a different reality.
Of the 14 MAC websites, including numerous blogs, only eight people picked Temple to beat Villanova and most of those who picked the Owls said it would be a "tight game."
One of the guys  said "since Temple lost a ton of talent on defense" and "had a new system" that the Owls would lose to Villanova.
I chalk this up to MAC haters. More specifically, Temple haters in the MAC.
Temple did lose some talent, but not a "ton" and the Owls returned nine of 11 guys who started AT LEAST ONE GAME on defense last year. One of the guys who started three games as a DE, promising left end Sean Daniels, is now a backup. Not due to any fault of his own but because Temple moved tight end Morkeith Brown, a born leader, to the DE slot. Temple's defensive line is bigger, stronger, deeper and faster overall despite losing a first-round draft pick.
 Another returner, Steven Johnson, beat out one of the guys who went into an NFL camp for a cup of coffee at middle linebacker.
 New system?
Yeah, a new and improved system that does something the other system did not do, especially on offense _ put the Owls' explosive players into the best position to explode. That is, establish the run with first-round NFL pick Bernard Pierce behind a massive offensive line (averaging 6-5, 320, the Eagles just wish they had that size) and then throwing play-action to talented receivers and tight ends.
The notion that "Temple will take a step back without Al Golden" is widely regarded as gospel in the MAC community. Temple fans know a different reality.
Did anyone notice that "Saint Al Golden" fielded a Miami team that committed nine penalties, including a false start and two illegal substitutions in a 32-24 loss at Maryland tonight? Does it sound familiar?
I thought so.
Look, one thing Al Golden did was bring in a ton of talent and it is still here but I maintain it's coached better now. Al was a charismatic guy who was universally loved by mothers whose sons he recruited.

Good seats still available for PSU, but not for long.

On game day, not so much loved by Temple fans who remembered Wayne Hardin's genius for those three hours of the week.
There's an upgrade of talent on both offense and defense, but that's something the MAC will start to learn the hard way on Saturday night at Akron.
For the record, I predicted on this website that the final score of the Villanova game would be 35-14 and on as 41-7.

My reasoning was that I saw this as an epic beatdown somewhere between that conservative 35-14 estimate and a possible 55-3 outcome.
That's pretty much how it played out.
For Akron, I don't expect a 42-7 beatdown because the word Akron doesn't whip Temple players into a frenzy of hate that the word Villanova does.
So I will revert to the more conservative prediction of 35-14 and think that might drop to around 31-10, but no lower.
The season began last week, but breaking down perceptions around the league won't start until Saturday night.