A Season in Purgatory: Villanova and Life in College by Tony Moss

By Tony Moss

At a college the place basketball is king, the Villanova soccer staff battles competitors either off and on the sphere. Low on funds and recruiting strength, the department I-AA Wildcats needs to always justify their life to a prestigious educational establishment and the scholars and alumni who bemoan the team’s “minor league” prestige. This tale of Villanova’s 2005 season is an within account of a soccer application wading during the political mire to carry glory to a faculty principally detached to its efforts.
Through the Wildcats' adventure, Tony Moss explores the internal workings of school soccer, relatively the chasm among department I-A, domestic of the main seen, profitable courses, and department I-AA, the place crowds are smaller yet festival is simply as excessive. As alumni and college query the price of investment sixty-three soccer scholarships and a full-time training employees, Moss leaves us to choose even if the fight is well worth the rate to high schools outdoor the highlight and even if the sport has any inherent worth except the ground line.

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Extra resources for A Season in Purgatory: Villanova and Life in College Football's Lower Class

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19 The Coach It was little wonder then that Talley’s main goal at the beginning of his career was to coach high school football and teach English. “I played at Haverford High School and was a running back, went to Southern Connecticut and wasn’t good enough to be a running back, or fast enough, and labored on the scout team for a couple of years. I played a lot my junior and senior year and started my senior year, but I was a very average player. And being a blue-collar person—my father drove a trash truck for Haverford Township, my mother was a cleaning lady—and the first one to really go to college in my family, there weren’t a lot of options for me.

Gene DeFilippo and I were friends. I was elated, I was ecstatic when Gene got the job, because we were finally hiring a football guy and somebody I knew, and somebody that had been at Kentucky, in the big time, and could really jettison our football program. Our relationship wasn’t frosty, at first. ” Another element helping to strain the interaction between head coach and athletic director was the matter of DeFilippo’s son, John, who was starring at nearby Radnor High School in the mid-nineties and was being pursued by a number of i-aa programs.

Though the season would end in a bittersweet fashion, as Villanova lost a 37–34 heartbreaker at home to Jim Tressel’s Youngstown State team in the national quarterfinals, Talley was now in a position to remain at Villanova for the remainder of his career. Villanova continued to achieve modest success, but it would take another five years for the program to return to the playoffs. The Wildcats were done in during 1999 by a late regular season loss to Youngstown 29 The Coach State, the last time Talley would face Tressel before the native Buckeye took over at Ohio State.

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