2009 Temple Preview |
2009 Temple Offense
2009 Temple Defense |
2009 Temple Depth
2008 Temple Preview |
2007 Temple Preview |
Head coach: Al Golden
4th year: 10-26
Off 24, Def 25, ST 2
Lettermen Lost: 16
Best Owl Players
1. NT Andre Neblett, Sr.
2. LB Alex Joseph,
3. FS Jaiquawn Jarrett, Jr.
4. DE Junior Galette,
5. WR Jason Harper, Sr.
6. SS Dominique Harris, Sr.
7. LB John Haley, Sr.
8. LB Amara Kamara, Jr.
Vaughn Charlton, Jr.
10. RB Kee-ayre Griffin, Soph.
2009 Results: 0-0
9/10 OPEN DATE
at Penn State
10/3 at Eastern Michigan
10/24 at Toledo
10/31 at Navy
11/13 at Akron
11/21 Kent State
11/27 at Ohio
2008 Results: 5-7
8/29 at Army W 35-7
9/6 Connecticut L 12-9 OT
9/13 at Buffalo L 30-28
9/20 at Penn State L 45-3
9/27 Western Mich L
10/4 at Miami Univ. W 28-10
10/11 at Central Mich L 24-14
10/21 Ohio W 14-10
10/25 OPEN DATE
11/1 at Navy L 33-27 OT
11/8 OPEN DATE
11/12 at Kent State L
11/22 Eastern Mich W
are improving, but they’re taking baby steps.
After going 5-7 last year with two overtime losses and a Hail Mary loss
to Buffalo, Temple showed just how far it has come since being the worst
program in America not all that long ago. Head coach Al Golden once
again has a veteran team returning with 51 returning lettermen and 19
starters, but now there has to be more production to finally got to a
bowl game for the first time in 30 years.
Only two of the five wins were by less than
a touchdown, while five of the losses were by a touchdown or less. The
Owls should’ve beaten Kent State late in the year. They had both Navy
and Connecticut in trouble and couldn’t get by in overtime losses. Now,
with all the returning experience, there should be more close wins and a
possible run to the MAC title game.
But this is Temple, and even with great recruiting classes, at least by
MAC standards, and a ton of experience for the second year in a row, the
program has to get past being Temple. It’s
easy to forget just how bad the program was not all that long ago
winning four games from 2003 to 2006 including an 0-11 2005 campaign
that might have been the worst of all-time. Golden has been fighting the
team’s past, and now he might finally have the team to do it.
The defense should get back to its 2007 form, when it was among the best
in the MAC, with a great line, an excellent pair of safeties, and a star
in MLB Alex Joseph. The key will be the play of an offense that wasn’t
bad in the clutch, even with so many close losses, and has to find the
right starters in the right spots. There are several backs looking for
time, three quarterback options, and an offensive line that has plenty
of veterans who can move around to create the right combination. Even
with so many question marks, this could still be the best team in the
Buffalo beat Temple to the punch as the best rags-to-riches story in the
last several years, but the Owls could have more staying power. The
recruiting classes have been better, Golden might stay in place a little
bit longer than Turner Gill will at UB, and playing in Philadelphia is a
plus. The program has done enough building. Now is the time to finally
produce. Yes, there are expectations, and they’re warranted.
What to watch for on offense:
Plenty of shifting across the offensive line. There’s loads of
experience up front, but there’s little in proven production after
finishing last in the MAC in sacks allowed and led the way for the
league’s worst running game. The one sure thing, center Alex Derenthal,
is gone. Expect it to take at least half the season before the right
combination is found.
What to watch for on defense: More of a pass rush. The Owls
weren’t bad at getting into the backfield last year, but Junior Galette,
the team’s leading sacker, isn’t a sure thing after missing the final
few games of last season. With good size and excellent quickness across
the front four, there must be more than 18 sacks. Brian Sanford, Adrian
Robinson, and LB John Haley should be regulars to get to the
The team will be far better if … it can score. This has been a
problem over the last few years. It’s amazing the team was able to win
five games despite finishing dead last in the MAC in total offense and
rushing offense, but it made the most of the chances it received. The
Owls scored 14 points or fewer in five games, and while things picked up
late, they have to start doing more.
The Schedule: It’s not bad. Forget about the road trip to Penn
State in non-conference play, but there are only three other games
against teams that went to bowls last year and the two battles in the
MAC are at home against Buffalo and Ball State. The other is on the road
at Navy. There’s a rough stretch of three road trips in four weeks over
the second half of the season that closes out with four away games in
the final six. However, there isn’t a bigger break for an East team than
missing Central Michigan, Western Michigan, and Northern Illinois from
Best Offensive Player: Senior WR Jason Harper. He goes from being a deadly No. 2 receiver to
the No. 1 man with Bruce Francis gone. Harper averaged 17.3 yards per
catch last season with three touchdowns on 33 grabs. With excellent
jets, he has to be the home run hitter as well as a steady, reliable
Best Defensive Player:
Senior NT Andre Neblett. He didn’t have the huge season he was supposed
to after a breakout sophomore campaign, but he was still plenty good
playing next to Terrance Knighton. Now Neblett will be the main man on
the inside and he has to gum of the works and play like the all-star he
has the potential to become.
Key player to a successful season:
Junior QB Vaughn Charlton. He was in the starting mix last off-season
but ended up redshirting so he could have two years left to play. The
starting job isn’t a lock with Chester Stewart and Chris Coyer in the
mix, but he needs to use his veteran leadership to get last year’s
inconsistent offense going.
The season will be a success if
... Temple gets to a bowl game. With so much returning experience and so
light a schedule, this has to be the year the program finally reaches
its promise under Golden and gets to a bowl game for the first time
since 1979. Winning the East isn’t out of the realm of possibility, but
there might be too many problems to attain that goal.
Sept. 26 vs. Buffalo. While there are other big games on the schedule,
not will mean more than the MAC opener against the defending champion.
It took a miraculous Hail Mary for the Bulls to beat Temple last year,
in a game that changed around the season for each team, but if the Owls
can win this season they’ll be in the East driver’s seat early on.
2008 Fun Stats: