Owl’s Biggest Test Looms

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The Temple Owls won their second-straight game following their victory against the Cincinnati Bearcats. This marks the second victory in as many starts for quarterback Frank Nutile. After defeating both Navy and Cincinnati, Temple fans once again have hope their school will be selected for a bowl game. However, for the Owls to get there they will need to get through their biggest obstacle yet.

On Saturday, Temple will be playing against their AAC rival University of Central Florida. Currently, the Knights are the best team in the conference, and one of the best teams in the nation. The team is ranked 14th in the AP Top 25 and 12th in the Coaches Poll due to their 9-0 record.

This in large part has to do with the play of their head coach Scott Frost. After inheriting an rough 0-12 team, he has been able to rally his team and create one of the most well-rounded offenses in college football.

Frost has been generating national attention as he has turned a zero win team in 2015, to an undefeated team this year (College Football News)

One of the biggest standouts of this offense is quarterback McKenzie Milton. Milton has been great for the Knights with both his legs and his arm. So far this season he has thrown for 2,720 yards, 22 touchdowns and only 5 interceptions, while rushing for 350 yards and 4 touchdowns.

Milton is aided by his great receiver Tre’Quan Smith. The 6’1 junior has hauled in 40 catches for 761 yards and 10 TDs which ranks 7th in the country.

Mix this with their well-balanced rushing attack that features 6 players who have ran for over 100 yards and TDs on the season and you can understand why they are so highly rated.

Luckily, they do have a small weakness. While UCF may be ranked as the 40th overall defense in college football they have some flaws. First off, they allow nearly 150 rushing yards per game. With the recent emergence of David Hood, the Owls should look to continue his momentum in this game.

The second and more notable weakness of this defense is their pass defense. Currently, they rank 69th in the NCAA for most passing yards allowed. That is higher than Cincinnati who ranks 50th and who Nutile played well against.

If Nutile continues to distribute the ball to his wealth of receivers it seems likely that he leads the offense to another high scoring game.

For the Owls to beat UCF on Saturday, they will need to take advantage of the Knights’ subpar defense, while limiting their explosive offense.   

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