#88 Temple Football Preview

Temple Owls
Overall Rank # 88
Conference Rank # 4

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2010 Record: 8-4 (5-3)
2010 Bowl: none
Coach: Steve Addazio (First year at Temple, 0-0 overall)
Offensive Coordinator: Scot Loeffler
Defensive Coordinator: Chuck Heater

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Matt Brown, RB, 886 yards
Passing: Mike Gerardi, QB, 1290 yards
Receiving: Rod Streater, WR, 481 yards
Tackles: Tahir Whitehead, LB, 56
Sacks: Sean Daniels, DE, 4
Interceptions: Tahir Whitehead, LB, 1; Maurice Jones, CB, 1; Zamel Johnson, CB, 1

Other Key Returnees: WR Brett Pierce, DB James Nixon, WR Rod Streater, TE Evan Rodriguez

Key Losses: DB Jaiquawn Jarrett, DE Elisha Joseph, DT Muhammad Wilkerson, WR Michael Campbell

The Temple Owls are led by newly hired Head Coach Steve Addazio. Coach Addazio spent the last six years at a nationally competitive program, the University of Florida. Coach Addazio is an offensive guru who will take a Temple offense that is loaded with returning players and look to light up the scoreboard and add a few wins to Temple’s record. Temple believes Coach Addazio is the right man for this job and, in time, will make Temple a well-known nationally competitive team.

The Temple Owls offense is returning several key starters from last season.  Last year’s starting signal caller, Mike Gerardi, will lead the attack that also brings back the previous season leading rusher, Matt Brown. Many of Temple’s wide receivers are also returning, although their leading receiving yard gainer did graduate. Temple’s offensive effort will be spearheaded by a mauling and experienced offensive line. Eight of their offensive linemen have played in at least nine games, with six participating in 12 games. Coach Addazio is an offensive line specialist so this should be a real strength of this team. The offense will certainly have to produce some fireworks if Temple wants to repeat as at least an eight game winner.

Coach Addazio biggest challenge will be continuing the success of the Owls defensive unit. They lost many of their key players and are only returning five starters. However Al Golden did leave the cupboard full before he darted off for Miami so I am sure the replacements are talented. Tahir Whitehead, their returning leading tackler, must step up at the linebacker position for this team to be formidable. Temple’s defense was solid all-around last year, especially in the pass department but with losing so many players to graduation it is tough to project how stout their unit will be this campaign. One thing is for sure though, they need new players to step up and play well if they want to be competitive this year. Temple’s offense also must learn how to protect the ball better, and likewise their defense needs to create more opportunities by forcing turnovers.

Bottom Line:
Temple is entering a new era under Head Coach Steve Addazio this year. They have been on the rise the past few seasons and Coach Addazio is expected to make them soar. It is unfair to expect him to take them over the top this year, but a solid year is expected. Temple can be a dangerous team because they are capable of beating you in a multitude of ways. They can beat you in a track race, where the offenses have their way, as well as a grind ‘em out in a defensive slugfest. Offensively they will be balanced to keep defenses guessing and on their toes. Coach Addazio is out to prove that even though Al Golden left, Temple can still have their golden age in football.

Projected Bowl: none

2010 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 150.25 (67th in nation, 6th in conference)
Passing Offense: 183.83 (90, 9)
Total Offense: 334.08 (89, 6)
Scoring Offense: 25.00 (79, 5)
Rushing Defense: 139.50 (47, 6)
Pass Defense: 178.17 (15, 1)
Total Defense: 317.67 (16, 2)
Scoring Defense: 19.08 (16, 2)
Turnover Margin: -.50 (88, 8)
Sacks: 2.00 (61, 6)
Sacks Allowed: 2.00 (68, 7)

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