Temple Owls

AP source: Temple finalizing deal to make Miami's Manny Diaz head coach

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AP source: Temple finalizing deal to make Miami's Manny Diaz head coach

Temple is finalizing a contract to make Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz its next head coach, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because details of the deal were still being worked out. Diaz would replace Geoff Collins, who left Temple after two seasons to become coach at Georgia Tech last week. Like Collins, Diaz has been a successful defensive coordinator with Power Five schools.

Their careers already have crossed. Collins helped replace Diaz as co-defensive coordinator at Mississippi State in 2011 after Diaz left for Texas. In 2015, when Collins left Mississippi State for Florida, Diaz returned to the Bulldogs.

Diaz, a Miami native, has directed top-15 defenses in yards per play allowed with the Hurricanes each season since joining them in 2016.

The 44-year-old went to Florida State and started his career as a graduate assistant on Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden's staff in 1998-99.

He seemed on a fast track to a head-coaching job in his 30s, but a three-year stint at Texas toward the end of Mack Brown's tenure as head coach turned out to be a setback for Diaz. He was fired early in the 2013 season.

Diaz resurfaced the next season at Louisiana Tech, before returning to Mississippi State for a year.

Temple was 8-4 this season under Collins, including 7-1 in the American Athletic Conference, with its loss to No. 7 UCF. The Owls have had five straight seasons of at least a .500 record under Matt Rhule and Collins, the longest stretch of sustained success for the program since the 1970s.

Georgia Tech hires Temple head coach Geoff Collins

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Georgia Tech hires Temple head coach Geoff Collins

Updated: 5:39 p.m. 

ATLANTA — Georgia Tech hired Temple coach Geoff Collins on Friday, choosing a Georgia native with a background in defense to replace Paul Johnson as the Yellow Jackets coach.

Collins, 47, is a former Florida and Mississippi State defensive coordinator and Georgia Tech assistant who was 15-10 in two seasons at Temple.

Georgia Tech announced plans for a news conference on Friday to introduce Collins, who has a history at the school.

Before his time at Florida (2015-16) and Mississippi State (2011-14), Collins was a graduate assistant and tight ends coach at Georgia Tech under coach George O'Leary from 1999-2001. He returned to serve as recruiting coordinator at Georgia Tech under coach Chan Gailey in 2006.

Collins also spent a season as director of player personal at Alabama in 2007, Nick Saban's first season leading the Crimson Tide.

Temple athletic director Patrick Kraft said assistant coach Ed Foley will serve as interim coach for the Independence Bowl against Duke on Dec. 27.

"While it is always difficult to lose a head coach, it is a testament to what we have built at Temple through our students, our fans, our alumni and our donors that we can continue to have success," Kraft said in a statement released by the school. "We have a world-class university, strong support staff, excellent facilities, passionate supporters and a very healthy culture and I am confident that there will be great interest in our job yet again."

When announcing his decision to step down following 11 seasons at Georgia Tech on Nov. 28, Johnson said he will remain on the job through Georgia Tech's game against Minnesota in the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit n Dec. 26.

Georgia Tech finished 7-5 in the regular season. Johnson compiled a record of 82-59 at Georgia Tech with three appearances in the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game.

Collins met with Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury in New York earlier this week and with the university president G.P. "Bud" Peterson in Atlanta on Thursday.

Collins, a Conyers, Georgia native, had an 8-4 record with a 7-1 mark in the American Athletic Conference this season. He took over for his close friend Matt Rhule last year, when Rhule left for Baylor.

Quinton Rose and Shizz Alston lead Temple over Saint Joseph's

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Quinton Rose and Shizz Alston lead Temple over Saint Joseph's

BOX SCORE 

Quinton Rose and Shizz Alston, Jr. each scored 15 points and Temple pulled away late to beat crosstown rival Saint Joseph's 77-70 on Saturday night.

Temple (7-1) has beaten Saint Joseph's (4-4) in three straight games, and is off to its best start since the 2012-13 squad opened the season 8-1.

The game was tied 60-60 with just under five minutes to play. The Owls made three consecutive 3-pointers to spark a 13-4 run and they led 73-64 with about a minute left. Alston and Alani Moore II scored five points apiece and each made a 3 during the stretch.

Rose and Alston each made four field goals and both were 6 of 6 from the line. Nate Pierre-Louis chipped in seven points and matched a career-best with 13 rebounds.

Jared Bynum scored 23 points to lead Saint Joseph's. Charlie Brown added 18 points and Lamarr Kimble had 12.