While the Panthers (3-4, 0-3) aren't exactly a league power, they are regarded as a stiffer challenge than the Bulls and the Huskies.
"We have to accomplish overcoming some adversity and some roller-coaster emotions," Temple head coach Steve Addazio said. "So it will be a great challenge for us."
But there are several things the Owls must do to exit Heinz Field with a victory.
Here's a look at the game:
Intimidating offense. Temple's defense was unable to stop Rutgers in the second half last weekend. Pitt boasts the conference's best wideout tandem in senior Mike Shanahan (80.6 receiving yards per game) and junior Devin Street (79.3).
The Panthers also have a talented running back tandem in senior Ray Graham (513 rushing yards, five touchdowns) and freshman Rushel Shell (362 yards, three TDs). Quarterback Tino Sunseri is second in the conference in completion percentage (68.9), passing yards (1,878), and passing-efficiency rating (159.6).
And the average size of Pitt's starting offensive line is 6-foot-5 and 317 pounds.
Pressure Sunseri. While Sunseri has great statistics, he also has a history of unraveling under pressure. He's been known to take bad sacks or just throw the ball up for grabs. And when he does that, the Pitt faithful turn on a quarterback they believe is extremely overrated.
So the quickest way to get 40,000 fans to boo the quarterback they love to hate is to make him uncomfortable.
Temple needs to get to him early and often to get in his head. They also need to force him to make quick decisions and force him out of the pocket. If the Owls allow him to sit there, he'll pick them apart like Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova did last week.
Four quarters of intensity. In addition to getting to Sunseri, Temple must play a complete game defensively. The Owls were horrible early on in games against Connecticut and Maryland. And they fell completely apart against Rutgers after intermission.
And how many times have Temple fans witnessed defensive breakdowns by the secondary?
More balance. Now for the broken-record portion of Temple Topics.
With a running back like Montel Harris, it's obvious to see why Temple likes to run first and run often.
However, the Owls appear to be more effective when they pass on early downs. That usually prevents teams from loading eight defenders in the box. As a result, Harris gets more running room to work his magic. And at the same time, it would enable quarterback Chris Coyer to get into a rhythm.
Coyer must produce. Here's broken record, Part II.
Coyer has to make quicker decisions and be more accurate when he does throw the ball. There's a great chance that quarterback play will decide the outcome of Saturday's game. And if he duplicates his performance in the last two games, Temple might get blown out.
Coyer completed 13 of 26 passes for 132 yards and a touchdown to go with an interception against Connecticut. He missed five wide-open receivers.
Against Rutgers, he went 7 for 14 for 65 yards and a touchdown to go with an interception and two fumbles before being benched in the fourth quarter.
Another subpar outing could lead to his being replaced by Juice Granger for the second consecutive week. It could also lead to his losing the starting position.
Get Fitzpatrick involved. The Owls need to find more ways to get the ball to Jalen Fitzpatrick.
The slot receiver leads Temple in receptions (16), receiving yards (236), touchdowns (two), and receiving yards per game (39.3). The Owls need to get him more involved on special teams and in the running game. Outside of Matt Brown, Fitzpatrick is the most dangerous Temple player to tackle in space.
Watch "Owls Insider With Steve Addazio," hosted by Keith Pompey, as they preview the Temple-Pittsburgh game. philly.com/olwsinsider2012