Adding talent to the pool

Fresh off the most successful season in 30 years, Temple Coach Al Golden and his staff entered the offseason intent on not resting on their laurels. Instead of sitting back and enjoying the time off

Fresh off the most successful season in 30 years, Temple Coach Al Golden and his staff entered the offseason intent on not resting on their laurels.

Instead of sitting back and enjoying the time off before spring practice, Golden preached to his staff and players that the work was only going to get harder now that they’ve achieved some success, Golden told reporters and fans at his Signing Day press conference.

“I read somewhere that the Law of Mount Everest is that when you start to climb, and you start to elevate, the need for teamwork escalates,” Golden said. “And it does. For us, there’s not a lot of room to stand when you start winning nine games. It’s harder to breathe at the top. We have to keep going. I already told the student-athletes that this is going to be the hardest offseason we’ve ever had. It’s not the time to take a deep breath. We have a long way to go.”

To continue on the right path, recruiting is vital, Golden said. However, for the first time since he arrived in North Philadelphia, Golden has enough talent stored that he doesn’t need an incredible influx of incoming freshman to be successful.

Nonetheless, there were still some areas to improve upon from last year’s 9-4 team. On offense, wide receiver was especially important to upgrade, Golden said.

“Our focus on offense was at wide receiver,” Golden said. “I think anybody could recognize that…Deon Miller is a really good looking athlete and a great kid. Darryl Shine is another really, really dynamic player.”

Overall, the recruiting class has one glaring characteristic that links it to previous classes – local products.

“I think the thing that we’re most excited about is that we’re really staying true to our commitment to the local area,” Golden said. “22 of the signees are from within three hours of Temple University, which really fits our mold.”

In total, the Owls signed 27 athletes for their 2010 class, including the younger brother of former Philadelphia Eagle and current Baltimore Raven L.J Smith. Despite his impressive lineage, Nate Smith’s pure talent is what stood out to the staff, Golden said.

“If I had to pick the best pure football player of the group, it’s Nate Smith, hands down,” Golden said. “Offense, defense, kicks off, returns kicks. He’s a throwback.”

Numerous players from the 2010 class chose Temple over BCS offers. The most talented player is arguably Myron Ross, a running back from Wissahickon High School that originally committed to Vanderbilt, a member of the vaunted Southeasten Conference, before deciding to stay closer to home by becoming an Owl.

Another reason that the Owls have avoided getting content is that the Mid-American Conference has a history of flashes in the pan, Golden said.

“For anybody associated with Temple football to think that we’ve arrived or turned the corner is just fool’s gold,” Golden said. “You can ask Western Michigan, you can ask Bowling Green, you can ask Ball State…[They went from] nine-10 win seasons to three or four wins and no bowl games. That’s how quickly it can turn. We want to go from being a winning team to a winning program.”

“Now isn’t the time to take a deep breath,” Golden added. “Now is the the time to move forward, to push forward, to work harder and to improve.”

2010 Recruiting Class
Olaniyi Adewole LB Fr. 6-2 220 Drexel Hill, Pa.
Antonio Belt WR  Fr.      5-11    157      Forestville, Md
Wyatt Benson                    LB         Fr.       6-0     215      Philadelphia, Pa. School
Brian Burns                        DB         Fr.       6-0      170      Bowie, Md.
Taray Carey                      DE         Fr.       6-2      210      Whitehall, Pa
Joe Cenatiempo                 OL         Fr.       6-7      315      Glen Mills, Pa.
Andrew Cerett                    P          Fr.       6-5      240      Huntingdon, Pa.
Desmond Coble             WR/KR     Fr.      5-10    175      Richmond, Va.
Sean Daniels                     DE        Fr.       6-3      220      Blackwood, N.J
Marquise Goods                DB         Fr.      5-11    175      Orange, N.J.
Elijah Grant                       OL         Fr.       6-6      340      Piscataway, N.J.
Aaron Hush                   DE         Fr.       6-4      265      Piscataway, N.J.
Tyler Johnson                    TE         Fr.       6-5      240      Ringwood, N.J.
Zamel Johnson                  DB       R-Fr.     6-0      165      Staten Island, N.Y.
Adam Metz                         OL       Fr.       6-5      310      Hummelstown, Pa.
Deon Miller                  WR        Fr.       6-5      205      Highland Springs, Va.
Jaimen Newman                 DE         Fr.       6-4      250      Colonial Heights, Va.
Connor Reilly                     QB         Fr.       6-2      180      Fairfax, Va.
Anthony Robey                  DB         Fr.      5-10    175      Norristown, Pa.
Myron Ross                         RB        Fr.     6-1     205      Ambler, Pa.
Darryl Shine                    WR/KR       Jr.      5-10    185      Orlando, Fla.
Gerald Silvera                    WR        Fr.       6-0      180      West Orange, N.J.
Nate Smith                         LB        Fr.     6-0    220      Highland Park, N.J/
Rod Streater                    WR         Jr.       6-4      185      Burlington, N.J.
Martin Wallace                  OL       R-So.    6-6      295      New York, N.Y.
Hershey Walton                 OL         Fr.       6-4      320      Reading, Pa.
Dante Weaver                    DT         Fr.       6-2      320      New Brunswick, N.J.

Kyle Gauss can be reached at

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