Thursday, December 13, 2012

Our picks: Lembo, Bowles, Rhule (in that order)

BREAKING NEWS: CBS Sports and are now reporting as of Thursday night it's down to Rhule or D'Onofrio ... God help Temple if it's D'Onofrio, whose Miami defense was ranked No. 118 of 120 FBS teams in 2012 ...

Todd Bowles, because he represents the diversity this university  is all about and  proudly rocks the Temple colors and has a winning head-coaching record in the NFL, should be named the next Temple coach if it's between him and Rhule. I think it might go to Matt Rhule , though.

Lembo and Cristobal have "home run" power while Bowles and Rhule, at best, are gap hitters and it's more likely that Bowles or Rhule will strike out or pop up than the other two guys
Getting information from inside the walls of Temple athletics is almost impossible.
Bill Bradshaw runs a tight ship and that approach has navigated Temple through some troubled waters in the big-time college football world.
I'm OK with that because of the nice ports this trip has taken Temple fans of their major sports.
He hired "the most underrated head coach in college basketball" in his old baseball infield mate at LaSalle, Fran Dunphy.
He hired a program-builder without peer in Al Golden who lifted the Temple football program off the scrap heap and into respectability.
Love him or leave him (cough, leave him), Steve Addazio was able to talk his way into two high-profile jobs after Florida and was able to take Golden's talent and win Temple its first bowl game in 30 years.
Addazio might have done Temple a huge favor by leaving after this  4-7 disaster.
That's 3 for 3 and the best Bradshaw hit at LaSalle was .312, so I've got to like him better as an AD than a lead-off hitter.
Bradshaw's track record is good, so I'm OK with his stealth methods.
The latest news is that Temple fans may have to wait until next week to learn of a new coach.
In the meantime, all we can do is read between the scraps of information we're able to get out of Broad Street.
Reading the tea leaves, as it were.
We've learned that early last week Bradshaw called a current NFL and former Temple player and asked him who he would chose between Matt Rhule and Mark D'Onofrio, two former Temple coaches.
The player said without a doubt Rhule.
That was before Eagles' defensive coordinator Todd Bowles entered the picture and I'm told Bowles is now considered a very serious candidate.
Former Florida International University coach Mario Cristobal already interviewed, as did current Notre Dame defensive coordinator Bob Diaco. No confirmed status on two great head coaches already available, Dave Clawson of Bowling Green or Pete Lembo of Ball State.
My choices are Lembo first, Clawson second and Cristobal third simply because they have taken FBS teams to bowls as head coaches. They would remove all the guesswork about how they will do at Temple simply because they've done it as a head coach before.
I'm thinking, though, that Temple will hire someone like Rhule or Bowles because this delay speaks more to Rhule and Bowles finishing their NFL games this week. If you are into conspiracy theories, and I'm not, you might guess the delay might have something to do with new Temple president Dr. Neil D. Theobald, an Indiana guy, flying out to the Hoosier state to try to convince either Colts' head coach Bruce Arians or Lembo to take the job. Arians might win the Super Bowl, so that's not happening but I would gladly take Lembo instead.
Borrowing a phrase from Facebook friend Chris "Mad Dog" Russo "gun to my head" Bowles gets the job. (I wrote this Thursday afternoon and still believe Todd should get the job over Matt Rhule or Mark D'Onofrio for a multitude of reasons.) The reasoning will be that Temple is looking for stability in the position above all and Bowles will beat out Rhule based on his small sampling (2-1 record) as an NFL head coach. Plus, he has OWL in the middle of his name and the marketing people love that kind of stuff.
That said, I'd rather see either Lembo or Cristobal sitting there at the presser on Monday. To use a baseball phrase Bradshaw might understand, Lembo and Cristobal have "home run" power while Bowles and Rhule, at best, are gap hitters and it's more likely that Bowles or Rhule will strike out or pop up than the other two guys.
That would make it 3 for 4 for Bradshaw.
Good enough?
Yes, in baseball, but maybe not athletic administration.