Preview 2018: Previewing and looking ahead to the Temple Owls season with what you need to know.
Preview 2018: Temple Owls
– Team Overview
– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
– Top Players, Key Game, Fun Stats
– What Will Happen & Win Total Prediction
– Recruiting Class Analysis | Schedule Analysis
– Temple Previews 2017 | 2016 | 2015
Apparently, it is possible to keep winning at Temple.
After years and years and years of horrible football – going from 1987 to 2008 with just one winning season – and getting booted from the Big East, to independence, to the MAC, to the American Athletic Conference, the Temple football program is now just that good.
Al Golden was the one who turned the thing from hopelessly woeful to a winner in three seasons, and then came the transition.
Steve Addazio took the Owls to a bowl game, but floundered the next season before bolting to Boston College.
Up stepped Matt Rhule, ended up winning 26 games in three years, but that came after going 2-10 in his first season. Rhule left for Baylor, and in stepped Geoff Collins into a rough situation.
The Owls didn’t just lose the head man who brought an American Athletic Conference title; they lost a ton of talent including most of the stars on defense and plenty of the main men on offense.
Collins would’ve been forgiven if he had a rough year. After all, it’s Temple – it’s not supposed to just reload.
But that’s exactly what it did. It took a good part of the year, but the pivot came in November with a strong performance in a win over Navy leading the way with three wins over the last four games to become bowl eligible. The blowout win over FIU in the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl turned a potential clunker into a winner – because that’s what Temple does now.
The program that couldn’t do anything right now has six winning campaigns in the last nine through four coaches.
Best of all, Collins – who was more than ready for a head coaching job after years or doing great things as the defensive coordinator at Mississippi State and Florida – has a great team coming back. He doesn’t have to rebuild; he just has to tweak.
Seven starters return on an offense that started to get better as the season went on. Frank Nutile is a good enough quarterback to win with, especially with the great receivers and excellent backs returning. If the line is okay, the Owl attack will work.
Collins is a great defensive coach, and he’s got the players. The linebacking corps could be the best in the American Athletic Conference, safety Delvon Randall might be the league’s top defensive player, and the pass rush will be among the best in the country.
Will it be enough to win a second conference championship in three seasons? Not necessarily considering the strength across the rest of the league, but Temple is in the discussion again, and it’ll go to a bowl game again.
Because that’s what winning programs do.