Villanova’s Andy Talley expects the playoffs again in 2014

Andy Talley and the Villanova Wildcats won the FCS National Championship in 2009. Credit: Getty Images
Andy Talley and the Villanova Wildcats won the FCS National Championship in 2009. Credit: Getty Images

Villanova’s Andy Talley has been the head coach of the Wildcat’s football team for 28 season and has seen a little of everything. Sporting a 191-121-1 career record, the Bryn Mawr native has led Villanova to eight conference titles in four different conferences. In 2009, the Wildcats won the FCS National Championship over Montana. The coach recently talked to Metro about everything from recruiting to facing FBS teams, to perhaps joining a major FBS conference.

It sounds like you had a very productive signing day. How are you feeling looking over your incoming freshman class?

I think what happens with the recruiting every year at this level, because you don’t have 25 [scholarships] like the [FBS] schools do, you try to cover the areas where you have players graduating and you have slots. We needed one quarterback and I think we got a really good one early in Zach Bednarczyk, and we needed two offensive line men, one receiver, a slot running back and a true running back. You kind of recruit according to positional integrity.

Aside from incoming freshmen, why is this time of year important for a college football program?

Right now, ever since they came back in January you are trying to get them ready for spring practice. You have 15 days coming up of spring ball, and in the mean time, in addition to getting them ready conditioning-wise, you are trying to get everybody bigger, stronger and faster in the offseason. It’s a very critical time for the growth period of a lot of these guys to continue to try and reach their potential physically. All of those components you are looking for in the fall, you’re looking for those players who are on the rise to fit into the scheme.

Boston College is a tough way to start a season. Are you excited for the match up?

We always open up with a [FBS] team, and it’s extremely difficult to beat those guys. They are a rough group to play away. You play that game for money, its a money game. I have never been for those games because nine times out of 10 you lose. We’ve beaten Rutgers and Temple a couple times, but when you’re playing Boston College, Syracuse, West Virginia, Pittsburgh, you’re probably going to get beat.

Talk of Villanova being an FBS program has mostly dissipated. It it still something the future might hold?

I think we’re going to [remain] an FCS team. There was a lot of drama about the Big East splitting up, and now that they have settled down to really a basketball league, and Villanova basketball is a big part of that, I don’t think there is the push now to go [FBS]. There really is no reason to if we are happy at the FCS level, it’s a level we can compete in year in and year out, and I think that issue has gone by the boards. We are looking forward to being one of the better teams in the country in FCS.

What are your early expectations for 2014?

This season was really disappointing. We averaged 30 points per game offensively and we gave up 22, and normally with those numbers you win eight games. We lost the New Hampshire game by one, the Maine game by three and the Fordham game by three. We had a lot of injuries and they came at the wrong time for us. The way our schedule fell, we ended up playing the really good teams in a row and on the road. We ended up 5-3 in the [Colonial Athletic Conference], 6-2 would have gotten us into the playoffs.

Can close losses like that help a team get hungry and more experienced?

You use it as a motivator. My conversation with the team was that if we had won one one-point gamer we would have been in the playoffs… One of the things we need to accomplish as a program is that when we get into those one, two or three point games we win them.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Jasper Johns aide admits stealing, selling artwork for…

By Joseph AxNEW YORK (Reuters) - A former assistant to renowned American contemporary artist Jasper Johns pleaded guilty on Wednesday to selling nearly two dozen…

National

Sister of accused Boston Marathon bombers arrested for…

The sister of the accused Boston Marathon bombers was arrested in New York City for threatening a woman over the phone, saying she could "put a bomb on you," police…

Local

Mayor announces public housing improvements

Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke at the Lincoln Houses in East Harlem on Wednesday, calling for the scaffolding to come down at NYCHA complexes across…

National

Peter Theo Curtis: American released by Syrian militants…

An American writer freed this week from two years in the captivity of insurgents in Syria spoke briefly outside his family's Cambridge home Wednesday of…

Television

'So You Think You Can Dance' recap: Season…

Season 11’s top four dancers gave their final performances before America’s Favorite Dancers are announced next week.

Going Out

Labor Day in NYC: Make the last weekend…

Soon, it’ll be time for wool accessories and knee-high boots. Even the Pumpkin Spice Latte has already arrived — but we still have one last…

Going Out

Things to do this week in NYC, Aug.…

MUSIC The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees…

Going Out

5 things to do this weekend in NYC

The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees expected. David Guetta,…

NFL

Mario Manningham on the bubble as Giants play…

Former Super Bowl hero Mario Manningham hopes his second go-around with Big Blue doesn’t end with Saturday’s final cut day.

NFL

Source: Stephen Hill 'faces a battle' to make…

A team source says Stephen Hill, who has battled injuries and poor performances during his first two years, is no lock to make the Jets’ final roster.

Sports

Serena Williams leaving legacy of talented American women…

It seems only a matter of when, not if, Serena Williams will win her 18th career grand slam championship.

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…