Every year Bill Connelly of SB Nation conducts previews for all FBS programs. This year he previewed the Temple football team last month on April 9th. The preview can be found at the link below:
The upshot is that Temple will continue to be Temple despite losing 2 coaches in the off-season. Temple still has a loaded offense, and I truly believe they have enough RBs on the roster to figure that out. Defensively the Owls return all of their LBs, get a future NFL DB in Harrison Hand (if he becomes eligible), and reload on the DL with R-Freshman and upperclassmen. The team has depth, experience, and talent. The schedule this year is favorable with expected clashes against Bucknell, ECU, Tulane, UConn, SMU, a MD team we beat up on last year, and a much anticipated GT duel with the return of Coach Collins. According to the post, Temple has a >50% chance of winning in 8 of the contests, even at 68% odds against GT. That is a testament to the returning personnel. He also said in his final statement that Temple has a chance to win the AAC West, so who knows how much attention to detail he has in his previews but it is more thorough than most.
The 4 Areas of Concern
- Offensive coordinator Uremovich is a pass 1st, pass 2nd, and throw 3rd kind of a guy. His offensive numbers were putrid at NIU. Now granted, he didn’t have Anthony Russo at QB, so that may open up his play book. His play selection will be interesting because Temple has an offense with weapons and will not require heavy doses of run.
- The DBs faced heavy attrition from last year. There are some promising up-and-comers, but they are on the less experienced side.
- The running back situation needs to sort itself out. We won’t get answers after Bucknell. Depth is important these days at the RB position and Gardner is the only proven starter.
- DL is thin on the interior. The DE will likely be intermixed with the Dana Levine, Quincy Roche, Zach Mesday, DeAndre Kelly, and then several underclassmen including Tyreke Young, Arnold Ebiketie, and hopefully healed JUCO transfer R-JR Nicholos Madourie. On the interior its only Dioubate and Archibong with Khris Banks and Ifeanyi Maijeh on the second unit. The first two are strong but the drop-off after them is steep. We have little depth at DT and if one of those first two go downm we will have to rotate undersized DL into that position.
As the season nears and summer camps draw closer, there will be more previews ahead. I look forward to the football season with mixed anticipation. At their best the Owls can compete for an AAC East title, but the depth will be tested and the coaching staff will have to adjust to life in the AAC.