Temple Spring Game Preview and Video to Get You Fucking Hype

Let me start off by saying Varga was the most delusional PJ Walker defender of all-time. There was an overthrown pass in the South Florida game last year where the wide receiver dove into a full out extension on a pass to the back of the end zone and was still a full body length away from the ball. Varga stated that the receiver’s “gotta be faster.”

Alas, Varga knows the most about Temple’s roster from top to bottom. He can tell you where every player went to high school and what the weather was like on the day they were born. He gets home from his 9-5 and watches the press conferences after the team practices. If there’s someone you should listen to about which players to look out for, it’s him. His PJ boner is receding and potentially making room for one of the players he mentions in the article below.

The Spring Game is pretty boring to be honest. You show up to the practice field and Meek Mill is blaring in your ears. 80% of the crowd is made up of parents or former players that aren’t into that music. You have to stand on the sideline and can’t really see anything too well. It’s still kind of chilly out but you’re also trying not to get sunburnt. Some Aramark dude in a wife-beater is cooking hot dogs to the blackest of crisp that he can get them. The only people that are hyped up are the players (kudos to them). 2 years ago they had the kickers as the center of attention for about 5 minutes when they had them trying to make chip-shot field goals. The kickers kept missing, which finally forced someone to yell, “GO FOR TWO!” to the amusement of the crowd.

The whole thing is a giant dick tease, but that doesn’t mean we can’t give you this Mayhem Is Coming video to get you fucking hype to watch some Temple Football.

 

Guest written by Sean Varga

We already know enough about the surefire starters for the upcoming season, so I’ll be previewing players for Temple’s Cherry and White game on Saturday that can hopefully make an impact this year. We’ll start with the offense:

Anthony Russo (#15): This one is the most obvious. Filling PJ Walker’s shoes certainly won’t be easy and I’m a little weary accepting Marchi or Nutile taking on that role. Russo stands as a 6’4”, 225 lb. pro-style pocket passer dependent on arm strength, accuracy, and a consistent offensive line. Unfortunately for Russo, the offensive line will be lacking depth and valuable experience. My best comparison (with a clear AAC bias) would be Cincinnati alum Gunner Kiel (6’4”, 220 lb.). Outside of the startling resemblance in stature, both QBs can pick defenses apart given a clean enough pocket, though Russo’s cleaner throwing mechanics provide him with a higher ceiling than Kiel in my opinion. I’m also referring to 2014 Gunner Kiel, not post-decapitation Kiel. Russo did not play in Temple’s spring game last year because he was not an early enrollee, so this year will be the first time fans get to see Russo in “live” action.

Todd Centeio (#16): Centeio, unlike Russo last year, enrolled at Temple early and has been seeing reps intermittently throughout spring practice. I’d assume Centeio will redshirt this year but it’ll still be insightful to get a glimpse at the raw talent he has to offer with a few reps in the scrimmage. The stars are aligning, however, that he is the second coming of Phillip Walker. Both QBs stand at 6’0”, exhibit dual-threat skills with a pocket passer mentality, and have their collegiate careers starting with an away game at Notre Dame. New offensive coordinator Dave Patenaude is known for his uptempo, fast-paced style of play and has stated in the past that he likes to utilize a running quarterback, which could work in Centeio’s favor as camp progresses.

David Hood (#24): Here we have somewhat of an enigma. Hood has shown flashes of being a potentially solid number two, as guaranteed starter Ryquell Armstead will need a counterpart. Jager Gardner could fill that role but Ryquell Armstead is enough of a bruising back that Gardner wouldn’t be providing much of a change of pace. Hood’s versatility and shiftiness might be enough to compliment Ryquell, but his breakaway speed is a concern, leading me to the next hopeful surprise.

Tyliek Raynor (#34): Raynor has quietly been having himself a nice spring. He came in last year as a highly touted true freshman but suffered what seemed to be a reinjuring of a nagging knee issue, if I recall correctly, and ended up redshirting last year. Raynor actually reminds me of a well-rounded version of Khalif Herbin. Though Herbin never seemed to be able to fully put it together, Raynor possesses the same speed with an added lateral shiftiness that separates him from Herbin. I’m hoping to see Raynor get some carries and showcase that he’s still got the talent he displayed in high school.

Matt Hennessey (#58): Coaches have raved about Hennessey since he joined the team last year as he’s set to takeover the starting center spot. He’s played in several spots on the line and brings some rare in-game experience that this line is sorely lacking as the depth chart progresses. Ideally, he’ll make for a smooth transition from Brendan McGowan, who was lost to graduation this past year.

Isaiah Wright (#13): We got to see how talented and versatile this kid could be at times last year as he rotated between WR, RB, and wildcat QB. I’m not too worried about seeing him get reps this spring game, but more curious to get an idea of how coach Patenaude will utilize Wright’s skillset. I can’t imagine we’ll get too much of a glimpse beyond some vanilla play calling, but it’s worth looking out for.

 

Biggest Potential Surprise:

Kenny Yeboah (#84): In my opinion, Yeboah was highly under-recruited coming out of high school. His recruiting began to pick up steam towards signing day, but thankfully he was fully committed to the Owls. Yeboah redshirted his freshman year but has all the skills to become the next Kip Patton (except without the whole transferring thing). Yeboah is a more of a pass-catching tight end that isn’t afraid to throw a shoulder into someone. I’m excited to see Yeboah in live action and would not be surprised if he had a coming out party at the spring game similar to that of Patton a few years back.

 

Here are some defensive names I’m just going to throw out to look for:  Mike Jones (#10, transfer), Linwood Crump (#11), Shaun Bradley (#18), Jerimiah Atoki (#19), William Kwenkeu (#35), Daishaun Grimes (#48), and Benny Walls (#32). All of these names have been sporadically mentioned throughout spring camp, and it’s a pretty wide-open competition to fill the empty linebacker/d-back spots, whether it’s first string or building depth. Hopefully a few of these guys can take a big step forward to make the contribution we’ll desperately need this year, which starts with Saturday’s game.