Temple Owls vs Connecticut Huskies

There was a time last month when Temple had to question if it would even gain bowl eligibility this season. However, three straight wins have the Owls flying high heading into Friday’s road date with Connecticut (Enter Contest). The Owls were 3-3 and trailed UCF 25-7 before rallying for an improbable last-second win. They followed up with that performance by getting the upset win over USF and holding a comfortable victory against Cincinnati last week. This gives them the momentum going into Friday. Temple has its eyes on an American Athletic Conference East Division title, but a loss to last-place UConn would just about end that dream. The Huskies have lost three straight games by a total of 61 points and have dropped four of the last five matchups in the series.

ABOUT TEMPLE (6-3, 4-1 AAC)

The Owls are led by running backs Jahad Thomas and Ryquell Armstead, the only tandem in the nation with double-digit touchdowns. Thomas (nine rushing scores and three receiving TDs) had scored exactly two TDs in six straight games before getting blanked by Cincinnati, although he did rack up a season-high 151 yards on the ground. Armstead was limited to 61 yards on 18 attempts against the Bearcats but plunged into the end zone twice versus Cincinnati, giving him 11 rushing scores on the year. The sophomore running back collected a career-high 210 rushing yards one week prior. Owls quarterback Philip Walker has not thrown an interception in the last two games after tossing 10 picks in the first seven contests. Temple has outscored UConn 131-71 in the last five matchups.

ABOUT CONNECTICUT (3-6, 1-5 AAC)

The Huskies were embarrassed by an East Carolina team that entered with a 2-5 record, dropping last week’s contest 41-3. The Pirates’ Zay Jones had one more reception (19) than the entire UConn squad, although Huskies wideout Noel Thomas delivered a solid performance with seven catches for 135 yards. Huskies quarterback Bryant Shirreffs has not thrown a touchdown pass in his last two games and hasn’t completed more than 60 percent of his passes in a game since Week 2.

Posted in CFB

Temple (3-2) vs Memphis (3-1)

Fresh off its first loss of the season, host Memphis aims to regroup Thursday against resurgent Temple when the Owls visit the Tigers in an American Athletic Conference game (Enter contest). Memphis outscored its opponents 155-27 during a 3-0 start, but struggled in a 20-point loss at Ole Miss last week in its final non-conference tune-up.

ABOUT MEMPHIS

The Tigers’ defense allowed 624 yards while the team committed four turnovers and seven penalties against the Rebels. They’ve allowed a total of 10 points in their previous two games before surrendering 48 to Ole Miss, and now must contend with an Owls squad that has defeated them in two of the last three seasons. Memphis needs Riley Ferguson to have a bounce back game after the junior threw three interceptions without a touchdown pass last week, a stark contrast to his eight touchdowns and zero picks over the previous two outings. Wide receiver Anthony Miller had 157 total yards and a touchdown against the Rebels, while fellow junior Doroland Dorceus rushed for a score for the fourth straight game.

Memphis is averaging 45.8 points, which is sixth-best in the nation. Kicker Jake Elliott needs one point to tie DeAngelo Williams (362) for second place in school history and eight points to match Stephen Gostkowski (369) for top spot in the Tigers’ record books. The Tigers have not returned a kickoff for a touchdown in 233 consecutive games. It’s the longest active streak in the FBS.

ABOUT TEMPLE

The Owls faced plenty of issues themselves early in the season but have regrouped to win two straight behind 48- and 45-point performances. Although senior quarterback Philip Walker is looking to deliver a stronger effort this week, he went 7-of-18 for 124 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions last week against SMU.

Sophomore tailback Ryquell Armstead scored two touchdowns in his second straight game. He finished with 159 rushing yards against SMU. Senior Jahad Thomas also had a pair of rushing scores. It was his third straight game with two rushing TDs. He continues to work his way back from a hand injury that sidelined him for the first two games of the season. After recording a career-high 10 tackles against SMU, sophomore defensive back Delvon Randall will need a repeat performance versus the Tigers. Owls kicker Austin Jones is 8-for-8 in field goals (long of 45) and 21-for-21 on extra points this season.

Posted in CFB