Finally, time for trivial pursuits

The new Western Michigan helmet. I don't remember what the old one looked like.

Thought it kind of odd that, in the middle of recruiting season, new Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck introduced a new helmet.
I thought new coaches were in a full-out sprint to firm up and add to recruiting classes and didn't have time to address a pursuit as trivial (by comparison) as helmets.
Now they do.
I hope Matt Rhule does.
An established tradition at Temple is that a new helmet is solely the call of a new head coach.
Wayne Hardin changed the helmet from the stupid Owl to TEMPLE and the Owls won like never before. Bruce Arians wisely kept the TEMPLE and had the Owls go 6-5 (twice) against a Top 10 national schedule. Try picturing current-day Temple going 6-5 twice against a SEC schedule. That's pretty much what Arians did.
Jerry Berndt changed the TEMPLE helmet to the T and the Owls promptly went 1-10. Bad Karma.
The T took TEMPLE through some awful Ron Dickerson and Bobby Wallace years.
Al Golden changed all that with some good coaching ... and good Karma.
The winning Temple teams that Al Golden remembered had the word TEMPLE on the helmet.
The greatest helmet in the history of college football, IMHO.
The move was universally applauded, especially by ex-Temple players.
I thought that was great and made TEMPLE stand out from other Ts on other helmets, like Tennessee and Tulane.
We all know and love our Temple '][' but, really, how many non-Temple people located in Idaho or Montana or Washington or even Tennessee can tell that's a Temple ][ right away?
Not many, I'd venture to say.
There is a King Solomon-like solution here and I hope that Rhule has the wisdom to see it:
Split the baby.
Put TEMPLE on one side and the ][ on the other.
That way you have the branding concerns by marketing taken care of and you salute the greatest helmet era in TEMPLE history by putting it on the other half of the helmet. Heck, having TEMPLE on the other side of the helmet enhances and not detracts, from the ][ brand because of the constant reminder of what the ][ stands for on every tackle, interception or touchdown.
You leave no doubt as to what school you are playing and you have the most unique and best helmet in college football.
Then keep it that way for a long, long time.

The 2013 Temple signing class

 The Temple video people did a great job with these highlights, as usual.

Al Shrier has his briefcase.
Al Golden had his binder.
No one can deny the importance of either to Temple University.
Whatever was in the Shrier briefcase must have had been a lot, because the man transformed Temple sports news from dirt road days to the information highway.
Sign in Times Square welcomes new Temple Owls.

Golden allowed certain people to know what was in his binder, without giving away the entire playbook.
When I once had the gonads to walk up to Golden after an early signing day and ask, he said it was a blueprint on how to build a program from the ground up, from hiring coaches to designing a practice facility and, most importantly, recruiting.
New Temple head coach Matt Rhule must have gone through the binder once or twice because Rhule's first recruiting class reflects a core values' chapter from the Golden binder: "Trust the film."
Programs like Temple have to have coaches who know how to dissect and accurately grade the film because, for the most part, the rich get richer in college football.
 For those just below the top 25, they have to scratch and claw to get into the exclusive club above them.
"Trust the film."
While any running back or quarterback can look like Jim Brown or Brett Favre on film, not any running back can run for 389 yards and six touchdowns in one high school game (as Zaire Williams did) or not every quarterback can lead a team to an unbeaten season, a state title and a player of the year award (as P.J. Walker did).
Not every kicker can set a state record for career field goals (as Jim Cooper Jr. did). So while Rhule and his staff trusted the film, those players (and others) have a few facts to verify the film, too.

The complete class follows:

Jarred Alwan

Linebacker • Freshman • 6-1 • 215
Cherry Hill, N.J. • Camden Catholic HS
High School: Three-star prospect by … ranked the No. 23 player in the state of New Jersey … played for coach Gil Brooks at Camden Catholic HS … participated in the North-South Game … selected Temple over Boston College and West Virginia.
Personal: Jarred Alwan … born November 30, 1993 … parents are Narci and Gamal Alwan … plans to study risk management and actuarial science in the Fox School of Business.
Matt Barone
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-3 • 280
McKees Rocks, Pa. • Montour HS
High School: Three-star prospect by … ranked 13th nationally at center … played for coach Lou Cerro at Montour HS … team went 35-6 during his prep career with a WPIAL title and a runner-up finish … participated in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … as a junior, team went 12-3 and advanced to the PIAA Class AAA state semifinals in 2011.
Personal: Matt Barone … born March 2, 1995 … Montour teammate Tyler Haddock is a fellow Temple signee.
Buddy Brown
Linebacker • Freshman • 6-2 • 205
Williamstown, N.J. • Williamstown HS
High School: Three-star prospect by … played for coach Frank Fucetola at Williamstown HS … participated in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … as a junior, had 87 tackles, six sacks, and four forced fumbles … participated in the North-South Game… selected Temple over more than 20 other BCS offers, including Rutgers, Pittsburgh, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Personal: Shawn Brown, Jr. … born July 13, 1994 … parents are Tiffany and Shawn Brown, Sr. … has two sisters— Destiny (21) and Brianna (16) … father is a retired police officer … loves history … Williamstown teammate Jullian Taylor is a fellow Temple signee … considering a double major in kinesiology and business.

Brian Carter
Defensive Line • Freshman • 6-4 • 280
Harrisburg, Pa. • Harrisburg HS
High School: Two-way lineman for coach Calvin Everett at Harrisburg HS … three-year starter … 2012 first-team All-Mid-Penn Conference honoree on offense … selected to participate in the Big 33 Game … selected Temple over Connecticut.
Personal: Brian Carter … born November 7, 1994 … parents are Melody Fleming and Melvin Washington … guardian is Tracey Smith.
Jim Cooper, Jr.
Placekicker/Punter • Freshman • 6-1 • 205
Linwood, N.J. • Mainland Regional HS
High School: U.S. Army All-American … three-star prospect by … played for coach Robert Coffey at Mainland Regional HS but kicking coach was his father, Jim Sr. … participated in the 2013 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
Personal: James Cooper, Jr. … born October 19, 1994 … parents are Marie and James Cooper, Sr. … father was also a kicker at Temple (1983-86) under head coach Bruce Arians.
Dion Dawkins
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-5 • 330
Rahway, N.J. • Rahway HS • Hargrave Military Academy
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013.
Postgraduate: Played offensive tackle for coach Troy Davis during the 2012 season … bolstered an o-line that helped the Tigers rush for more than 150 yards per game … selected Temple over Cincinnati.
High School: Played offensive and defensive tackle for coach Gary Mobley at Rahway HS … graduated in 2012 … participated in the North-South Game.
Personal: Dion Ray Dawkins … born April 26, 1994 … parents are Lisa Dawkins and Eric Dawkins.
Sharif Finch
Linebacker • Freshman • 6-4 • 210
Henrico, Va. • Henrico HS
High School: Played linebacker for coach Roger Brookes … as a senior, had 84 tackles and five sacks … as a junior, had 161 tackles and 10.5 sacks … selected Temple over Miami and East Carolina.
Personal: Sharif Finch … born October 1, 1995… parents are Wendy Finch and Greg Finch … originally from Queens, N.Y.
Artrel Foster
Defensive Back • Freshman • 6-0 • 170
Meadville, Pa. • Meadville HS
High School: Played cornerback and running back for coach Mike Feleppa at Meadville HS … four-year varsity starter … in prep career, had 4,248 all-purpose yards, including 3,249 rushing yards on 499 carries, 37 touchdowns, 130 tackles, and six interceptions … 2012 District 10 Region 5 first-team honoree on defense, second-team honoree on offense … rushed for 101 yards in 2012 season opener against Northwestern … named one of the Top 100 juniors in Pennsylvania … 2011 District 10 Region 5 first-team honoree on defense, second-team honoree on offense … rushed for more than 1,000 yards as a junior and sophomore … as a junior, had three interceptions … also a 2012 first-team All-Region honoree in basketball on defense and second-team All-Region on offense … attended the 2012 Temple Football Camp … participated in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … also played basketball … selected Temple over Cincinnati and Penn State.
Personal: Artrel Jonte Foster … born June 24, 1995, in Meadville, Pa. …. parents are Tammy Foster and Art Bell … has an older sister, Asia Foster (24), and a younger brother, Armoni Foster (13) … cousin is Wade Manning, former WR/CB (1979-82) for the Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos … considering a career in graphic design or athletic training.
Tyler Haddock
Defensive Line • Freshman • 6-2 • 290
Pittsburgh, Pa. • Montour HS
High School: Three-year letterwinner at defensive tackle for coach Lou Cerro at Montour HS … unanimous All-Parkway Conference selection as a two-way player … team went 35-6 during his prep career with a WPIAL title and a runner-up finish … in prep career, had 120 tackles and 15 sacks … as a junior, team went 12-3 and advanced to the PIAA Class AAA state semifinals in 2011 … totaled 100career tackles, 26 TFL, 15 sacks, and three fumble recoveries at the end of his junior season … also a three-year letterwinner in wrestling … went 60-29 … attended the 2012 Temple Football Camp … started in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … Honor Roll student … active with Big Brothers/Big Sisters … selected Temple over Georgia Tech and Rutgers.
Personal: Tyler James Haddock … born December 16, 1994, in Pittsburgh, Pa. … parents are Sharon Jones and John Jones (stepfather) … Montour teammate Matt Barone is a fellow Temple signee … intends to study sports management.
Todd Jeter
Defensive Back • Freshman • 6-0 • 169
Monroeville, Pa. • Gateway HS
High School: Played wide receiver and defensive back for former coach Terry Smith, now at Temple, at Gateway HS … also returned punts … 2012 All-State selection … 2012 Quad East All-Star … 2012 second-team All-Foothills Conference honoree on defense … helped the Gators to a 9-2 record in 2012 en route to a Quad East championship with a perfect 8-0 record … team advanced to the WPIAL AAAA playoffs … as a senior in 2012, had 322 receiving yards and two touchdowns while making 27 tackles and two interceptions … averaged 20 yards per catch … played for the North squad in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … selected for the 2013 Big 33 Game.
Personal: Todd Jeter … mother is Renee Boswell.
Leon Johnson
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-6 • 300
Plainfield, N.J. • Bound Brook HS
High School: Two-way lineman for coach Dom Longo at Bound Brook HS … as a senior, had 20 tackles, including 15 solo stops … also played center for the Crusaders’ basketball team … selected Temple over South Florida and Ohio State.
Personal: Hubert Leon Johnson … prefers middle name … born June 4, 1995 … mother is Valerie Graves.
Paul Layton
Punter • Senior • 6-1 • 215
Burnt Hills, N.Y. • Ballston Lake HS • Albany
Transfer student from the University at Albany … enrolled at Temple in January 2013 … graduated in December 2012 … has one season of eligibility.
Honors: 2012, 2011, and 2010 first-team All-Northeast Conference honoree … 2012 College Football Performance FCS Punter Watch List … 2012 All-Northeast Conference Preseason Team … named the 2011 Great Danes’ Most Valuable Special Teams Player (team award) … named a 2011 ECAC Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Special Team All-Star … Northeast Conference Special Teams Player of the Week (twice) … 2010 NEC Academic Honor Roll … 2009 Capital District Student Scholarship.
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College: Three-year letterwinner at punter for head coach Bob Ford at the University at Albany … averaged 41.0 yards in career. 2012: Played in all 11 games at punter … averaged a league-best 40.4 yards per punt, including a program record 82-yarder vs. Wagner (11/3) … punted 46 times with 11 sailing 50-yards or longer … dropped 15 within the 20-yard line. 2011: Averaged 42.6 yards per punt, ranking 9th among the national leaders … booted 17 kicks of 50 or more yards. 2010: Averaged 40.1 yard per punt as a redshirt freshman … ranked 31st among the national leaders and third in the Northeast Conference … placed 14 punts inside the 20-yard line, including seven for touchbacks … booted 50-plus yard punts 12 times … tied 13th-longest punt in school history with 69-yarder in season finale against Monmouth … kicked a 63-yard punt at Duquesne and a 61-yarder at Maine. 2009: Redshirted. Selected Temple over Penn State and Notre Dame.
High School: Four-year letterwinner for coach Matt Shell at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake HS … 2008 Class A first-team All-State selection by New York State Sportswriters Association as a kicker … made 68 of 69 PATs and three field goals … third on all-time Section II kicking list with 77 points … averaged 42 yards per punt … all-time leader in Section II history with 172 career kicking points … 2008 Large School Offensive Player of the Year by the Albany Times Union … first-team All-Area by Daily Gazette and Troy Record … led high school to state championship game as a quarterback … passed for 1,302 yards and 14 touchdowns … rushed for 1,186 yards and 20 TDs … BHBL won second sectional title in last three years … consensus All-Area punter as a junior, when he averaged 41 yards per attempt … earned third-team All-State honors as a quarterback … career stats: 2,861 passing yards, 34 passing TDs, 2,002 rushing yards, 28 rushing TDs … four varsity awards as basketball guard … two-time team captain … National Honor Society member … Math Honor Society member … Business Honor Society member … participated in Big Brothers.
Personal: Paul K. Layton … born November 5, 1990, in Burnt Hills, N.Y. … parents are Karen and Jim Layton … has two older sisters, Jessica (32) and Lauren (26), and an older brother, Steve (30) … all siblings were college athletes … brother played tight end at Union College … Jessica played soccer at Syracuse, and Lauren played field hockey at SUNY Oswego … graduated from Albany in December 2012 with a degree in business administration… pursuing a master’s degree in marketing.
Jihaad Pretlow
Defensive Back • Freshman • 5-11 • 185
Elizabeth, N.J. • Blair Academy
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013.
High School: Played running back for coach Jim Stone at Blair Academy … as a junior, rushed for 838 yards and 19 touchdowns as the Bucs went 7-0 overall … also made four interceptions as a defensive back … played two seasons with nationally ranked basketball team … selected Temple over Connecticut, Penn State, and Rutgers.
Personal: Jihaad Pretlow … born March 15, 1994 … parents are Bayyinah Pretlow and Malik Jackson … father played football at Rutgers in the early 1990s … played Pop Warner football with fellow Temple signee P.J. Walker.
Shane Rafter
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-4 • 282
Moorestown, N.J. • Moorestown HS
High School: Played offensive and defensive tackle for coach Russ Horton … three-year letterwinner … 2012 All-County honoree on defense … helped the Quaker to the South Jersey Group 4 playoffs … as a junior, had 61 tackles and three sacks … the first player to commit to Temple in the 2013 class … participated in the 2011 National Underclassmen Combine … also a two-year letterwinner in track and ice hockey … selected Temple over Connecticut, Rutgers, and Syracuse.
Personal: Shane Rafter … born July 7, 1994 … parents are John and Barb Rafter … has a sister, Jamie.
Semaj Reed
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-7 • 270
Philadelphia, Pa. • Haverford School
High School: Played defensive end for coach Michael Murphy at the Haverford School … also played basketball … selected Temple over Buffalo and Maryland.
Personal: Semaj Reed … mother is Jacqueline Reed … originally from Newburgh, N.Y. … interested in political science, criminal justice, and business.
John Rizzo
Fullback • Freshman • 6-1 • 221
Johnstown, Pa. • Richland HS
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013.
High School: Played running back for coach Brandon Bailey at Richland HS … 2012 Tribune-Democrat first-team All-Area … as a senior, rushed for 1,769 yards and 20 touchdowns … played in the East-East Game … three-time state heavyweight wrestling champion … selected Temple over Penn State, Pitt, and Georgia Tech.
Personal: John Rizzo … born February 13, 1993 … parents are Lynda and Tony Rizzo … has six siblings— Anthony (26), Marlena (24), Frank (23), Joe (21), Christina (15), and Mario (14).
Averee Robinson
Defensive Line • Freshman • 6-1 • 285
Harrisburg, Pa. • Susquehanna Township HS • Milford Academy
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013 … originally signed National Letter of Intent with Temple in February 2012.
Postgraduate: Three-star prospect by … played the 2012 season for coach Bill Chaplick at Milford Academy.
High School: Played defensive tackle for coach Joe Headen at Susquehanna Township HS … 2011 Harrisburg Patriot-News first-team Defensive All-Star … as a junior, had 46 tackles and eight sacks … also wrestled … won consecutive PIAA heavyweight wrestling championship in 2012 and 2011… attended the 2010 Temple Football Camp.
Personal: Averee Robinson … born October 17, 1993 … parents are Terry and Adrian Robinson, Sr. … older brother is former Temple Owl and three-time first-team All-MAC DE Adrian Robinson (2008-11) who just finished his rookie season with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Adrian Sullivan
Offensive Line • Freshman • 6-5 • 270
Babylon, N.Y. • Babylon HS • Worchester Academy
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013.
Postgraduate: Played one season for coach Tony Johnson at Worcester Academy (Mass.) … Honor Roll student.
High School: Played offensive tackle and defensive end for coach Rick Punzone at Babylon Junior-Senior HS … team went 15-6 his last two seasons … named to the 2012 Best Players on Long Island Honor Roll for basketball.
Personal: Adrian Sullivan, Jr. … parents are Sonja Stewart and the late Adrian Sullivan, Sr. … uncle is former Temple and current San Diego Chargers assistant coach Andrew Dees.
Jullian Taylor
Defensive Line • Freshman • 6-5 • 230
Glenside, Pa. • Williamstown (N.J.) HS
High School: Versatile athlete … played defensive end, tight end, and linebacker for coach Frank Fucetola at Williamstown HS … 2012 All-State, All-Mid Athletic, All-Group 5, and All-South Jersey honoree … team went a perfect 12-0 en route to the 2012 state Class 5 championship as a senior, had 60 tackles and 14 sacks … participated in the North-South Game … volunteered for Mastery Charter School’s beautification project … selected Temple over Iowa and Virginia Tech.
Personal: Jullian Patrick Taylor … born January 30, 1995, in Philadelphia, Pa. … parents are Rufus Taylor and Rolanda Brewer … has a younger brother, Jay (8), and a younger sister, Mia (8) … father is a Temple alum who was a walk-on the men’s basketball team in 1989 … Williamstown teammate Buddy Brown is a fellow Temple signee … intends to study business.
Kiser Terry
Defensive Line • Freshman • 6-3 • 260
Feasterville, Pa. • Neshaminy HS • Milford Academy
Mid-year student that enrolled at Temple in January 2013 … originally signed National Letter of Intent with Temple in February 2012.
Postgraduate: Three-star prospect by … played the 2012 season for coach Bill Chaplick at Milford Academy … saw action at defensive end.
High School: Three-star prospect by … selected to play in the 2012 Big 33 Game and the 2011 Chesapeake Bowl … team captain … played defensive end and tight end for coach Mark Schmidt at Neshaminy HS … 2011 PA Football News Honorable Mention All-State honoree … 2011 Honorable Mention All-State selection … 2011 Philadelphia Inquirer first-team All-Southeastern PA pick … 2011 Suburban One first-team All-Conference honoree … 2011 Neshaminy Mr. Lineman coaches’ award recipient … 2010 second-team All-Conference selection … Redskins went 12-2 in 2010, his junior season, and advanced to the District 1 AAAA championship game … as a junior, had 47 tackles, including 40 solo stops, a team-best six sacks, and three forced fumbles.
Personal: Kiser Terry … born August 11, 1993 … mother is Betty Terry … older brother Terrell Channell lettered in football at Temple in 2006.
Jahad Thomas
Running Back • Freshman • 5-10 • 170
Elizabeth, N.J. • Elizabeth HS
High School: Ranked the fourth-best running back in the state of New Jersey … all-purpose back for coach John Quinn at Elizabeth HS … helped team to the 2012 state title … participated in the North-South Game … captained two sports as a junior … starter on the nationally ranked basketball team.
Personal: Jahad Thomas … born November 6, 1995 … parents are Connie Thomas and Eddie Roberts … Elizabeth HS teammate P.J. Walker is a fellow Temple signee.
P.J. Walker
Quarterback • Freshman • 6-1 • 200
Elizabeth, N.J. • Elizabeth HS
High School: Dual-threat quarterback for coach John Quinn at Elizabeth HS … 2012 Newark-Star Ledger State Offensive Player of the Year … helped team to the 2012 state title … as a junior, one of the state’s most accurate passers … went 120-of-189 (63.5 percent) for 2,168 yards and 18 touchdowns … in the NJSIAA sectional final against Piscataway, threw for 257 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for 199 yards and a touchdown … four-year starter … participated in the North-South Game … also played basketball … team reached the 2012 Group 4 final … selected Temple over Connecticut and Rutgers.
Personal: Phillip Walker, Jr. … born February 26, 1995… parents are Tamicha Drake and Phillip Walker, Sr. … Elizabeth HS teammate Jahad Thomas is a fellow Temple signee … played Pop Warner football with fellow Temple signee Jihaad Pretlow.
Zaire Williams
Running Back • Freshman • 5-11 • 188
Sicklerville, N.J. • Timber Creek HS
High School: Three-star prospect by … ranked by Rivals as the No. 36 overall running back and New Jersey’s 16th-best player overall … played for coach Rob Hinson … participated in the 2012 Chesapeake Bowl … selected Temple over West Virginia. ... While playing for Cherokee as a junior, he had 42 carries for 389 yards and six touchdowns in a game against Cherry Hill East.
Personal: Zaire Williams … born October 25, 1994 … father is Bruce Williams.

Hard to pick an MVP from this class ... now

Right now, P.J. Walker looks like your 2014 starting quarterback.

Not many people know this, but there was once a quarterback who won a Maxwell Award at Temple.
Now, after a nearly 40-year wait, there is a second.
"Hard to believe, Harry."
That might be the way current Temple radio color guy Steve Joachim would tell the story to play-by-play guy Harry Donahue.

Follow real time updates all day
Temple head coach Matt Rhule will be tweeting the announcement of each signee during the morning as their letters arrive.
To be part of the action, follow him on twitter @CoachMattRhule.
Rhule will discuss the 2013 recruiting class in a 3 p.m. media conference, which is not open to the public. TFF has not received an invite, so we'll be watching the press conference LIVE on before heading out to the TU basketball game.
Joachim was the Maxwell Award winner for the 1974 college football season, emblematic of the nation's best college football player.
Signing on the dotted line heading a solid class today is the second Maxwell Award-winner in Temple history, an incoming freshman quarterback by the name of P.J. Walker.
Walker's Maxwell came for being the New Jersey Player of the Year for unbeaten Elizabeth.
Walker doesn't remind me as much of Joachim as he does former Temple quarterback Henry Burris. Watching the film at the top of this post I had a similar reaction when former Temple coach Ron Dickerson showed me film of Spiro (Okla.) High School quarterback Burris.
My gosh, I thought. Same throwing style, same motion, as Henry Burris.
Same deadly accuracy. Walker is a little better runner than Henry was, but Henry has three Canadian Football Most Valuable Player awards on his mantlepiece.
We'll see how P.J. develops. He better get there fast since he's the only QB on the 2014 depth chart.
Walker could be the MVP of this class, but so could Jim Cooper, Jr., the first All-American kicker ever signed by Temple. His dad, also Jim Cooper, once kicked a 38-yard field goal to help Temple beat West Virginia. Son, also from Mainland, N.J., holds the New Jersey record for career field goals.
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Speaking about beating West Virginia, another MVP from this class could be running back Zaire Williams, from Timber Creek, N.J. The 5-foot-11, 200-pounder with 4.49 40 speed gave a glimpse of his big-time ability while playing for Cherokee two years ago. He finished with 42 carries and 386 yards (and six touchdowns) in a game against Cherry Hill East. Maybe he'll break Montel Harris' single-game Owl record (351, seven touchdowns).
Williams could be the MVP of this class.
So could two-time state heavyweight wrestling champion Averee Robinson, who once had six sacks in one game for Susquehanna Township while playing every position along the defensive line.
Shane Rafter (76) casts a rather large shadow.

Robinson comes from good bloodlines. His brother is a former Owl, Adrian Robinson, now with the Steelers.
I once told Adrian's dad, also Adrian, that the Owls were playing that Robinson out of position, that  he should have been an outside linebacker but that they needed him as a "rush" end to get pressure on the quarterback. Both Adrians understood. Still, Arob was a natural OLB.
This Robinson won't be playing out of position. He's a natural nose tackle in a 3-4 AND a natural DT in a 4-3.
Since he is a state wrestling champion, maintaining gap leverage in a 3-4 should make him especially effective there.
Buddy Brown is one of the best linebackers in the state of New Jersey, so he could be MVP of this class or mabye it could be his Williamstown teammate Jullian Taylor, a transfer from Abington (Pa.). Camden Catholic middle linebacker Jarred Alwan so also highly rated, so it could be him as well.
Or it could be someone else, like Harrisburg's Brian Carter or Meadville defensive back Artrel Foster or offensive linemen like Shane  Rafter (Moorestown, N.J.) or one of the two Montour linemen, Tyler Haddock-Jones or Matt Barone.
I've got an idea.
Let's wait until the Temple football banquet four years from now and decide then.
The fact that there are so many in this group in the discussion at this point only bodes well for the future of Temple football.
What's that Steve Joachim said?
Hard to believe, Harry.

Complete analysis of the class, with photos, up by Thursday afternoon

National Signing Day is Wednesday

TFF congratulates Bernard Pierce and all of the future Super Bowl winners who sign with Temple on Wednesday.
National Signing Day is Wednesday and it has become a huge deal.
It always WAS a big deal, but never this huge.
Blame or credit it on the explosion of college football popularity or multiple ESPN networks desperate for programming options, but it's just a fact.
That's OK with me, though, because college football, for all its flaws, is my favorite sport.
The most exciting sports day for me is the first Thursday of the NCAA basketball tournament. Sixty-four teams with a chance, albeit not an equal one, of winning it all.
I wish college football was that inclusive, but it sure beats the NFL alternative.
While that NCAA hoops boasts the year's most exciting sports day, the Wednesday of football signing certainly is right up there as the most intriguing sports day.
To me, the saddest day of the sports year is Senior Day when you say goodbye to players you have been following for four years.
Saying hello to 25 new Temple Owls on the first Wednesday of every February mitigates some of that sadness.
"I  look forward to seeing this new era
in  Temple football under Matt Rhule's watch.
   Temple players will all enjoy playing for him as I have."
__ Bernard Pierce
Super Bowl champion

It appears that new head coach Matt Rhule has held the class together fairly well, given he was a late December hire who also had to complete an NFL season. His additions to the 17 verbals Steve Addazio had addressed need areas, rather than grabbing "the best available athlete." Addazio recruited like this was the NFL, picking up  the BAA rather than address need areas. That's why Temple had a lot of 5-7 to 5-10 wide receivers and defensive backs, an overabundance of linebackers and a thin defensive line.
We'll find out for sure on Wednesday, but it appears Rhule's recent targets have addressed the size and depth concerns.
This new group of Temple Owls will know that they will be coached by a staff with proven credentials for putting guys in the league and, as shown yesterday, helping guys get Super Bowl rings.
The last six Temple rookies in Super Bowls have all come away with rings. Since 1975, 12 Temple players have made 19 Super Bowl appearances producing 15 rings, the latest going to Baltimore's Bernard Pierce.
Rhule was Pierce's offensive coordinator at Temple and Pierce credits Rhule with a lot of his development as a player and a person.
Players like Mo Wilkerson, the New York Jets' most valuable defensive player at the end of last season, also speaks highly of Rhule, as does Steelers' linebacker Adrian Robinson.
Defensive coordinator Phil Snow has not only put players in the NFL, but was a Detroit Lions' defensive backs' coach. So he knows what an NFL player looks like.
Even offensive coordinator Marcus Satterfield has developed an NFL quarterback.
Players who sign on the dotted line with Temple on Wednesday can rest assured that whatever talent they have will be maximized by the guys to whom they have trusted their college careers.
So NSD is a huge deal, but it'll be also a good one for Temple coaches, fans and, most importantly, players.

New TU coaches saving lives and laptops

Adam DiMichele will probably go to his grave in 70 years or so as the only QB to play for Temple, the Eagles and the Soul.

About a year ago at this time, Adam DiMichele was starting training camp with the Soul.
On Wednesday night, he was saving one.
DiMichele has come a long way since being the best Temple quarterback of the post-Hardin/Arians Era (sorry, Henry Burris) and the journey has taken him full circle back as an Owl graduate assistant. From being the first Temple quarterback to ever throw a touchdown pass for the Philadelphia Eagles (to a guy named Gibson, no less), to the Canadian Football League, to the MVP of the Erie (Pa.) arena team, to the Soul and now back to Temple.
On the way to class on Wednesday night, DiMichele came across a Temple senior in distress.
"I think I just saved a life," DiMichele posted on his Facebook page.

Matt Rhule didn't save a life, but he did save a laptop this morning.
Pressed for details from his friends, he explained:
"I was walking to class tonight, and was on the phone with my brother Dom," he said. "So I come to the red light and was waiting for it to change so I could cross.
"I look to my left and there's a guy laying on his back on the steps. Everyone just walks by him ...  I looked a little closer and realized he was unconscious. I tried to wake him up by basically screaming at him.
"I got my phone out and called 911. (I) felt like I knew exactly what to say and where I was but I didnt have a clue. Another bystander came over to me and we both talked about what we needed to do. He realized the guy was having some sort of convulsions or something (mind you, I am no doctor at all)  but he said that the guy was basically throwing up while laying down and that we needed to sit him up before he choked on his own (volmit).
Maybe that should be the new slogan for 2013: "Temple Football. Recruiting fans, one at a time."
"My heart was racing, I never really saw anything like this in person, or helped anyone like this before  so we sat him up a bit, made sure to try and be as cautious and safe as possible. Well, he ended up immediately throwing up. He came back around a few minutes later and didn't remember too much at all.
"He remembered going to work out, and not feeling good on his walk home so he sat down and rested, and the next thing he remembers is us waking him up. I don't know if  I necessarily saved his life or what not but he was very thankful for me helping him."
DiMichele later said it was an experience he'll never forget.
"It was crazy," he said. "I was nervous, but I'm glad I made the decision to help him when I did."
Fortunately, the EMAs arrived and told DiMichele he did the right thing and they took the senior to the hospital and everything turned out to be just fine.
As an aside, DiMichele may have recruited another fanny for the Lincoln Financial Field seats this fall.
"He told me he would certainly come to some Temple football games this fall," DiMichele wrote.
This morning, head coach Matt Rhule chased down a guy at the airport and gave him back a laptop the man left at security. Hopefully, Rhule had time to give a season-ticket sales' pitch as well. Either way, both coach DiMichele and coach Rhule generated some good Karma the past couple of days and at least two more fans.
Maybe that should be the new slogan for 2013:
"Temple Football. Recruiting fans, one at a time."