Newsome ready to do what it takes for Temple to win

Kevin Newsome, who left Penn State in 2011, returns to State College with Temple on Saturday. "I'm an Owl," he said. ED HILLE / Staff
Kevin Newsome, who left Penn State in 2011, returns to State College with Temple on Saturday. "I'm an Owl," he said. ED HILLE / Staff
Posted: September 17, 2012

Kevin Newsome stepped out of Edberg-Olson Hall and avoided stepping into a controversy.

The reserve quarterback for Temple could have declared this Saturday's game at Penn State a grudge match, considering he left State College last year with bad feelings. Instead, the former Nittany Lion was diplomatic.

"No, no special feelings," the junior said of returning to Beaver Stadium to face his former team. "The most important game of the season is always the next game. . . . It should be treated as such."

Newsome could have fired back at Penn State, where he lost a quarterback competition to Rob Bolden in 2010. In fact, Matt McGloin, who later became the starter, beat Newsome out for the backup spot that season.

Newsome was asked which Nittany Lions he has communicated with since becoming an Owl in August.

"None," he said.

He spent 21/2 years at Penn State and became an Omega Psi Phi fraternity member.

"I'm not going to treat it like a homecoming, because Penn State is not my home," he said. "My home is Philadelphia. The Temple Owls are who I play for. I'm an Owl."

That's a lot of school spirit for a guy who has yet to play a down for Temple.

Newsome arrived on Temple's campus a day before training camp began. Consequently he was not given the opportunity to battle Chris Coyer in camp for the starting job at quarterback.

The 21-year-old, who left Penn State in August 2011, was out of football for a year while attending Tidewater (Va.) Community College, which does not have a football team. So in addition to being unfamiliar with Temple's offense this summer, he wasn't in peak shape.

After being denied a waiver to transfer to Temple in January, Newsome took courses at Tidewater until the end of July. So he was way behind Coyer and backup Juice Granger during training camp.

Since the season began, he has been leading the scout team in practice. However, the Portsmouth, Va., native did line up at wideout during Wednesday's practice.

"I would definitely do whatever is needed for the team," Newsome said of a possible position switch. "You know if I can help in any regards or any way to help give us a chance to win, I would do whatever I have to do, because it's all about the team, the team, the team."

Newsome said he approached Temple coach Steve Addazio about moving to wideout or safety after last Saturday's 36-27 loss to Maryland.

Addazio was not available to comment.

Newsome is confident that he can provide a spark at wideout, if needed, even though he has not played the position.

"You can't coach heart," he said. "You are born with ambition. You are born with heart and integrity in your profession.

"And this is my profession. Winning games for the Temple Owls is my profession."

Two years ago, Newsome expected to be handed Penn State's starting quarterback position as a sophomore, replacing the graduated Daryll Clark.

Instead, Newsome walked the sideline for most of the season, throwing just 13 passes. He did not go with the team to that year's Outback Bowl, and disconsolately walked away from State College the following August.

A year later, he says his only goal is to make his teammates better.

"I'm not a selfish player at all," he said. "I want to do the best for the team. . . . I help with the scout, and I do the best I can to give [Temple's starting defense] a good look."

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Contact Keith Pompey at 215-854-2939 or, or follow on Twitter @pompeysgridlock. Read his blog, "Owls Inq," at

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