Part 7 of my American Athletic Conference Preview leads me to the defending AAC Champs Temple Owls. Now I know what you’re thinking this guy has the defending champs 3rd in the east. Well, they lost a lot of starters and their schedule is not favorable to start off. So let’s jump in and see what the future holds.
Best Case Scenario- Temple has one of the biggest opening games in the school’s history, they travel to South Bend Indiana and play Notre Dame. In this scenario, I give them the victory narrowly escaping victory. What this does is set up their next 2 games Villanova and UMass. So right before a pivotal East Divison showdown with USF, they are looking 3-0 in the face. They are going to South Florida and I have them losing this game dropping them to 3-1. Which sets up another huge East Division matchup against Houston, will this be the year that Temple gets their first victory over Houston? I believe so and this will move to 4-1. They then have a letdown game against East Carolina. They win their next 2 against UConn and Army that has them sitting at 6-2 with 4 to play that 4 is tough. Home against Navy, at Cincinnati, home against UCF and at Tulsa. In all honesty, they will be lucky to go 3-1 in those 4 so lets put them at 2-2 and an overall record of 8-4. Going bowling but 3 Conference losses. Which will not be good enough to defend their title.
Worst Case Scenario- The Temple Owls start out with a lopsided loss to Notre Dame struggle against Villanova and UMass. Losing to South Florida and then Houston and ECU all but seals the fate of Temple early on in the season. As they exit the ECU game at 2-4 they do rebound with wins against UConn and Army putting them back at .500. Losses against Navy and UCF at home with a win at Cincinnati sets up a win and get into a bowl game at Tulsa. They don’t get it and instead finish the season at 5-7 missing out on the chance to go to a bowl game.
Players to Watch- Ventell Bryant- WR, Ryquell Armstead-JR, Delvon Randall-S, Sean Chandler-S, Frank Nutile- QB.
What do I see happening I do see the Owls being bowl bound and I believe it will be 7-5 and they will get there. Frank Nutile must step in and fill the shoes of Phillip Walker if they are going to get to 7 wins.