The 2018 spring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Temple Owls.
No. 83: Temple Owls
Spring Practice Starts: March 13
Spring Game: April 14
Temple Owls Spring Status
It wasn’t a bad follow-up act after winning the American Athletic title in 2016. Matt Rhule might have been gone, and it might have been a rough start under Geoff Collins, but the Owls won four of their last five games including a dominant 28-3 win over FIU in the Gasparilla Bowl.
It was supposed to be a bit of a rebuilding year, and it should be another one in a few areas with three starters gone from the line, the top targets gone, and with five starters needing to be replaced on the defensive side.
The offense, though, has enough talent to be better, the linebacking corps should be stronger, and there are real, live expectations around Temple football. The Owls are supposed to be in the conference title hunt now.
Temple Biggest Depth Chart Battle
Offensive tackle. The top two wide receivers – Adonis Jennings and Keith Kirkwood – are gone, and finding a few more defensive ends will be a big deal, but the offensive line needs the most work. Leon Johnson was a solid left tackle, and Cole Boozer was fine on the right side of a line that was good in pass protection, but struggled for the ground game.
Temple Biggest Issue
The special teams have to be stronger. The interceptions have to slow down after giving away 15, and there are way too many penalties, but more than anything else, the Owls have to sharpen up the special teams. The return games were fine, but they allowed six blocked kicks, the punting game was miserable, and the placekicking was just okay.
Temple Biggest Positive
The linebacking corps should be terrific. The Owls went with a slew of sophomores last year, and now this should be a killer group that does a whole lot more. Shaun Bradley led the team in tackles, and Chapelle Russell, Sam Franklin, Todd Jones and William Kwenkeu had good seasons, too.
Really, Why Are The Temple Owls Ranked Here?
There might not be enough in place to come up with a conference championship, but as long as the mistakes slow down, the special teams are better, and Frank Nutile does more as the main man at quarterback, pushing for nine wins isn’t asking for a lot.