Temple sees need to improve despite rout of Villanova

Temple's Vaughn Carraway is mobbed by teammates after returning an interception 57 yards for a touchdown in the Owls' romp over Villanova in what may be the final Mayor's Cup game. DAVID SWANSON / Staff Photographer
Temple's Vaughn Carraway is mobbed by teammates after returning an interception 57 yards for a touchdown in the Owls' romp over Villanova in what may be the final Mayor's Cup game. DAVID SWANSON / Staff Photographer
Posted: September 03, 2012

Forget any lofty expectations - Temple's only goal was to beat Villanova in the final scheduled Mayor's Cup game, and the Owls got that done.

"I didn't set an expectation of how many points we'd score," Owls coach Steve Addazio said after Friday's 41-10 victory at Lincoln Financial Field. "I didn't set an expectation of how clean we'd play in terms of execution.

"It's game one. I wanted to get the tempo set for what kind of team we would be."

It's hard to judge Temple based on beating an overmatched Football Championship Subdivision opponent. But Addazio, though pleased with a victory, knows the Owls, who host Maryland (1-0) on Saturday then visit Penn State (0-1) two weeks later, must improve their passing game and limit the big plays they yielded on defense to succeed in the Big East.

He did, however, like Temple's 301 rushing yards - nearly half by senior tailback Matt Brown - despite facing a Villanova defense that put nine men in the box. Brown's highlight was his 56-yard touchdown run that gave Temple a 28-10 lead 21 seconds before intermission. The Baltimore native also had a 45-yard punt return as part of his 270 all-purpose yards.

Brown's backfield mate, Montel Harris, the heralded Boston College transfer, was limited to 12 yards on five carries because of a strained hamstring. He didn't play after intermission, although Addazio expects him to play against Maryland.

"I would say the passing game is one that we would like to be better at," said Addazio, whose squad was just 6 for 13 on third-down conversions. "We had some third and 3's and third and 4's that we just kind of didn't execute on and that hurt us."

Junior quarterback Chris Coyer completed all three of his passes for 30 yards and a touchdown during Temple's first drive. Afterward he went 2 of 8 for 31 yards, and his top three wideouts - Deon Miller, C.J. Hammond, and Ryan Alderman - didn't make a catch. Those numbers probably won't cut it against better teams.

The Owls defense yielded several big plays but made a few, too. Safety Vaughn Carraway returned an interception 57 yards for a second-quarter touchdown. On the ensuing drive, his fumble recovery set up another TD.

Temple also had four sacks.


Keith Pompey looks at the best and worst of Temple's opening-night victory. philly.com/owlsinq


Contact Keith Pompey at 215-854-2939 or kpompey@phillynews.com, or follow on Twitter @pompeysgridlock. Read his blog, "Owls Inq," at www.philly.com/owlsinq

comments powered by Disqus
|
|
|
|
|