Owls get to the top of Mt. Nittany ... and slip

16:48 Cholis Back 0 Comments



PHILADELPHIA _ The Temple football team climbed to the top of the Mountain, peaked over the top to see The Promised Land for a second and slipped back down with two minutes left on Saturday.
For all but the final two minutes of the game, Temple, without much help from its offense, led Penn State.
Then Penn State scored a 14-10 win.
To me, that lack of offensive help is the most disappointing thing.
A team that has Bernard Pierce, Mike Gerardi, Joey Jones, Evan Rodriguez, Rod Streater, Matty Brown, Alex Jackson and Deon Miller should not be struggling to put points on the board, no matter who the opponent.
A team that has a 6-5, 320-pound offensive line, should be able to get a push from time to time and protect the quarterback with regularity, no matter who the opponent.
A team that has Bernard Pierce, Mike Gerardi, Joey Jones, Evan Rodriguez, Rod Streater, Matty Brown, Alex Jackson and Deon Miller should not be struggling to put points on the board, no matter who the opponent

Head coach Steve Addazio is not clairvoyant, but when asked before the game what was the key, he said: "We can't turn the ball over and we have to get the game into the fourth quarter."
"Temple didn't play Temple football today. We got beat in the end and put the ball on the ground."
_ Steve Addazio

A simple request and the Owls got the game into the fourth quarter, but they did what Daz said they could not afford to do _ turn the ball over.
I thought the Owls got away from establishing Bernard Pierce, who had only four carries in the second half. I don't care if they were stacking the box, you've got to feed him the rock and hope he busts through the line just once. My guess is that the PIAA state 100-meter dash champion might not have been caught.
When you have an NFL running back, like Pierce, you've got to feed him the rock and get him into a rhythm.
I've always said Pierce was a "rhythm" back, meaning he'd go with carries of 1, 1, 2, 3, 2 an then break a 68-yarder. That's how he got 179 yards and three touchdowns in the 30-16 win over Fiesta Bowl-bound UConn.
Temple got away from Pierce too soon, but that's my humble opinion. I've watched the kid for three years now and I know how he can best be effective.
Whatever, it was a heartbreaking day.
I had hoped to live to see the day when Temple beat Penn State.
I thought today was going to be that day.
It will happen, though.
As a great man once said, "I might not get to the Mountaintop with you but we will get to the Promised Land."
Hopefully, I will get there with you.
Notes: Aside to KYW radio's Tom Maloney: When the station sends you to cover the game, don't tell me what I already know. I was stuck in traffic for three hours and all you told me was Temple scored on the first drive and Penn State scored in the final minute to win. Err, I knew that. Get off your fat, lazy, ass and go into the interview room and me some sound from Steve Addazio and Joe Paterno. Just a thought. Three hours in traffic and listening to the same AP story was getting a little old. ... I thought the crowd was 50/50 but the noise was 80/20, Temple. ... Great job by the defense, especially Kee-Ayre Griffin and Adrian Robinson and the interior front wall of Levi Brown and Kadeem Custis. I have a feeling this group is going to pitch a few shutouts in the MAC. ... A team with two quarterbacks really has none. I hope Daz looks at what happened in the first three games and not on the practice field and settles on one guy.