Here are a few topical items that Temple coach Matt Rhule touched on today during his America n Athletic Conference teleconference with reporters:
On whether or not the loss to Idaho has broken the spirit of this young team:
"No," Rhule said, "not at all. I don't think we have a fractured team with a fractured psyche at all. I think we have a team that is resilient and wants to prove that it can come back and win."
On why he inserted former quarterback Chris Coyer, now the team's starting tight end, at quarterback over the weekend:
"Idaho lined up and put five defensive linemen in the game and just dared us to throw it," Rhule said. "We wanted to get Zaire (Williams) and Kenny (Harper) going. So to kind of handle the extra guy we put Chris in so we could read them. It was a way for us to get some runs on offense. We wanted to get the running game going and Chris was our best option."
On trying to contain Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater this weekend when the Owls face the No. 7 ranked Cardinals:
"The biggest thing that you can say about Teddy is he's NFL ready and he's an NFL-style quarterback. You can see him making checks at the line; you can see him changing protections. He's operating in a pro-style system and he can make all the different throws," Rhule said. "So he's somebody that, when you look at his skill set, he's somebody that easily translates to the next level. Not only is he a Heisman candidate, but anybody who sees him Saturday is going to see a guy who is going to be a great quarterback at the next level.
More on playing Bridgewater:
"I think the biggest thing is to eliminate the deep ball and the big plays. If you can take that away, that's what they'd love to do first," Rhule continued. "The second thing is you have to get a rush on him. The only way to stop a great quarterback is to make him move his feet, hit him and get him off his spot. Sometimes those things can be hard because if you have to blitz you make yourself susceptible to the deep ball. We're going to have to try and find a way to mix it up because when he's comfortable he's deadly."
On the firing of UConn coach Paul Pasqualoni following the Huskies' 41-0 drubbing by Buffalo. The loss dropped Temple's American Athletic Conference foe's record to 0-4. Temple and South Florida are the only other winless teams in the conference:
"I didn't see the game this past weekend, but I watched a UConn team a week ago take a great Michigan team to the wire. And so obviously coach Pasqualoni did a great job getting his team ready to go play a great football game and they responded," Rhule said. "I think if you start firing football coaches in September a lot of times it's done for the public and for other reasons. But that football team showed just a week ago that they were responding to one of the great coaches in the profession. And so I would have assumed that they would have responded throughout the course of the year. It seems awfully early to me, and I think it's sad for the profession when it happens."