Army's Andy Davidson (40) bulls into the end zone with the go-ahead score with 8:18 remaining in the third quarter Friday night at Lincoln Financial Field. His TD and the ensuing point-after kick gave the Black Knights all the points they'd need to win.
1. Owls got what they deserved From the coaches to the players to the idiotic fans chanting “Eff U, Penn State” all evening, Owls everywhere should let this sink in: that display at Lincoln Financial Field on Friday night was justly rewarded with a resounding defeat at the hands of the Black Knights. It was embarrassing in the parking lots, entrance ways, stands, on the sideline and, of course, the field, too. Army outsmarted, outplayed and outclassed Temple in every way possible, making a mockery out of the home team’s latest motto: Greatness Never Quits. Maybe it doesn’t. But the Owls really wouldn’t know since greatness doesn’t exist in their program. Not before. Not now. Perhaps not ever – especially if that opening salvo to the 2016 season is any indication. Somewhere recently ousted Temple president and No. 1 Temple football supporter Neil Theobald is shaking his head.
2. Vast potential will never be realized It has taken me the better part of three years and countless hours of watching “oh, if only” action with Phillip Walker as a starting QB seemingly hamstrung by head coach Matt Rhule’s insecurities, but the reality finally hit home against Army: the on-again, off-again, run-pass-react electric brilliance witnessed during his freshman season will not manifest itself into the truly accomplished and consistent star he appeared destined to become. Frankly, he is a far lesser player, if not talent, than he was then, an odd reversal of normal development, complete with lost athleticism and sense of what’s going on around him. If the senior doesn’t develop a “feel” for pressure and show the wheels he once had to avoid it soon, he’ll either end up on the bench or in the hospital.
3. Do not bother with any excuses Chief among the rationales for this lousy effort will be Temple not having 2015 1,000-yard rusher Jahad Thomas available due to a hand injury. Sorry, like him and appreciate what he did last season, but the Owls’ backfield is loaded and it’s not as if sophomores Ryquell Armstead and David Hood failed to produce, averaging better than a combined 4.5 yards per carry with the former tallying the team’s lone TD. Not seeing a triple-option often would be another. Just cut it out. If the Owls’ defense wasn’t prepared to go against that attack, that’s on the coaches AND players. Frankly, Temple’s front seven should be ashamed of itself. It got totally whipped as most of Army’s 329 rushing yards came right up the gut.
- Jack Kerwin | firstname.lastname@example.org
BY THE NUMBERS
329 Yards rushing for Army
100 Fourth-down conversion percentage for Army (2-for-2)
50 Third-down conversion percentage for Army (7-for-14) 25 First downs for Army
11:36 Time differential in favor of Army
4 Sacks endured by Temple QB Phillip Walker
3 Interceptions thrown by Temple QB Phillip Walker
0 Wins for Temple in 3 games since ending the 2015 regular season at 10-2