Monday, October 8, 2012

Avoiding the Toledo Syndrome

 BE Offensive Player of the Week Montel Harris mentions two words in this video that sound great together.

"Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
_Winston Churchill
The best weekend in recent Temple football history is over.
First Big East game in eight years, first BE win in eight years, large enthusiastic crowd, all good things.
The only way to make it better is to keep on pushing on and top it every week from this point out.
The focus when the kids put the pads on tomorrow should be on one thing and one thing only:
Beating UConn.
Montel Harris and Ryan Alderman exchange thoughts on how to make moves
in the open field.
Photo by Mike Edwards

The Huskies are no slouch, either. They won at Maryland and lost by three to an NC State team that just took down Florida State.
It'll be important to buckle down the chin straps Saturday in Storrs, Conn.
I think this is a much better matchup for Temple than USF was because the Huskies have had trouble moving the ball and the Owls are just starting to find their offensive and defensive identities. UConn doesn't have a QB who can make big gains out of broken plays like B.J. Daniels can. That theory goes out the window, though, if the Owls don't play with the fire they showed against USF. The Owls have a history of losing focus after recent big wins.
For these purposes, we'll call it The Toledo Syndrome.
That's why the Owls should listen to Winston Churchill (and Steve Addazio) this week:
"Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it," Churchill said.
Here's some recent Owl history:
TEMPLE 38, Maryland 7 _ At Maryland, franchise running back Bernard Pierce went for 159 yards and five touchdowns as the Owls took down an ACC foe that beat Al Golden's Miami team, 32-24, two weeks prior. The next week? Owls lost at home, 36-13, to Toledo. After the Toledo loss, Addazio put the Owls back in pads and Pierce said "that was the hardest week of practice we ever had." Owls went on to beat Ball State, 42-0.
TEMPLE 34, Buffalo 0 _ After a second-straight shutout win, Owls lay a 13-10 egg at Bowling Green. Five straight quarters of woeful offensive football got Chester Stewart a permanent seat on the bench. After becoming the starter, Chris Coyer finished the season with four straight wins.
TEMPLE 30, Uconn 16 _ After beating the eventual BE champs at home by two touchdowns, Owls fail to get a whole lot of offense going in the second half of a 22-13 loss to Penn State. Probably more due to Bernard Pierce spraining his ankle after giving the Owls a 13-12 halftime lead than a letdown, though.
TEMPLE 14, Ohio 10 _ Owls beat Ohio on a last-minute touchdown pass at home on national TV from Adam DiMichele to Steve Maneri then go to Navy, build a lead and lose, 33-27, when Golden eschews the kneeldown and hands off to Kee-Ayre Griffin, whose fumble was taken in for a score on the penultimate play of regulation. Golden could have kicked it to Navy and forced a triple-option team to go 80 yards with 17 seconds left and no time outs. Instead of allowing KAG a seat on the bus ride home, Golden throws him under it postgame.
But then, the program was just learning how to be great.
The sign of a great program is to follow one good win with another.
The Owls have a chance to do that on Saturday.