Social media is a great tool to follow college football recruiting and, if you have been following Twitter in the past few days, there has been a significant buzz regarding Temple football.
Some of the top recruits not only in the Philadelphia region, but in the country are seriously talking about committing to the Owls, and if that gets done, head coach Matt Rhule will be in better position to do what he was brought in to do — win games.
Because for all the buzz surrounding Rhule’s second recruiting class, it was still ranked behind Steve Addazio’s 2012 class nationally and the second-best recruiting class in Temple history. It finished No. 4 in the AAC — impressive for a 2-10 school, but maybe not good enough to get the job done.
If some of the people mentioning Temple on their Twitter feeds — most notably George Washington High School’s Shareef Miller — make an early commitment to the school, they can be the Pied Piper, leading other four- and five-star recruits to the Philadelphia school.
The selling point Rhule and company are telling recruits is that the school can be the new Miami of Florida. Miami was built on local talent and Temple is following the same urban blueprint. Miller, ranked by some scouting services as a four- or five-star recruit, could be the guy who brings the rest of the top stars in the talent-rich Philadelphia area. He recently told a Philadelphia newspaper that Temple was his “top school” even though he has upcoming visits to places like Ohio State, Notre Dame and UCLA.
But it has to turn from talk in the newspaper into reality.
Plus, if you go from a national championship staff at Florida (offensive coordinator Steve Addazio, defensive coordinator Chuck Heater and quarterback coach Scot Loeffler) to guys Rhule hired from Tennessee Chattanooga (Marcus Satterfield) and Eastern Michigan (Phil Snow), the gameday credibility just doesn’t measure up. Temple fans saw what happened on gameday last year and it was not pretty as the team was out-coached by far less talented foes like Fordham, Idaho and UConn.
Addazio, now the Boston College head coach, had his faults, but no one with a shred of credibility can say his 2011 Temple staff was less qualified than Rhule’s 2014 staff.
Until Matt Rhule wins on a consistent basis, it will stay that far apart. Getting some four- and five-star recruits in town might begin to make a difference, but until these guys sign on the dotted line, it’s just talk.
The earlier talking the talk becomes walking the walk, the better. All it takes is one guy. That guy could be Shareef Miller.