Fair or not, today’s noon AAC league match-up in Philadelphia against the Temple Owls may very well go down in history as the biggest game in Coach Mo’s career. Bigger than the UNC-CH game and the newly added potential match-up against N.C. State on December 1st by a quantum margin.
On the cusp of equaling his win totals in each of his first two seasons, Coach Mo finds himself in unchartered waters. After everything that has transpired in the past two seasons, a win over Temple might actually be worth a ton of credit in the bank of the ECU faithful. To push over .500 in the W-L column, pull even at 1-1 in the AAC East standings and get a meaningful win early in the season would be a spectacular fete not only for Coach Mo, but for the team overall.
The near-miss at USF would be validated with a win over Temple on the road. Another strong defensive performance would settle the hearts and minds of the ECU fan base that the changes are REAL and consistency is achievable. Another solid running effort, too, would lend evidence that Coach Mo really does know how to build things.
And, most importantly, a win would buy another week of Pirate Nation support. As bad as the last two seasons were on and off the field, the ECU football program is experiencing a fan base that has moved to an installment plan. Giving each week that they get something in return from the previous outing.
As for today’s game, it is a pretty simple recipe: Run the ball, stop the run, and play with more physicality than we have in the past match-ups with the Owls. Special teams may very well decide today’s contest.
If Coach Mo and his Pirates want to make good on the coach’s bold promise for post-season this year, it starts in earnest today in Philly…get this win and Houston becomes a true possibility next week. Lose today, and there may very well be a bunch of missed installment payments next week.
Love to hear any last minute thoughts.