SportsDesk Extra: Single-Digit Tuff

Temple Football continues to expand upon its growing tradition when it comes to their single-digit number selections. Each season, the Owls coaching staff hand out jerseys leaving the single digits numbers vacant for its toughest members of the team. These individuals in order to be selected must sustain qualities of leadership and great character both within and outside football.

Armstead retains his number 7 from last season, as the starting RB. // Credit: David Swanson

This years 2018 Temple Owls have added some new faces along with returning players who will wear the single-digit number come gameday. Senior RB Ryquell Armstead, who’s in the running for the Doak Walker Award (Nation’s top Running Back), will return to the number 7. Number 2 will be worn again this year by Senior DB Delvon Randall who led the team in interceptions last season with four.


Starting Center for the Owls Matt Hennessy will represent the single-digit number 3 this year in practice while wearing number number 58 on gameday due to an NCAA rule that restricts Offensive Linemen to numbers between 50-79. The Center will sport the “3” sticker on his helmet during contests. Hennessy reflected when asked what it means to wear the number this upcoming season stating, “it’s a great honor because I have seen the other guys that have put it on and I have so much respect for those guys.”

Redshirt Senior Rob Ritrovato will be taking over FB duties and wear the number 4 this season after the jersey was worn last year by Nick Sharga who has gone on to pursue an NFL career. LB Chappelle Russell will wear number 3 in Hennessy’s place and make up one part of the Owls strong linebacking crew that also includes Junior Shaun Bradley, who will wear the number 5 this season and was credited with 85 tackles last year which led the team.

Wearing number 6 this season is Senior CB Rock Ya-Sin who became the first graduate transfer to receive a single-digit jersey.

QB Frank Nutile looks to hoist another trophy by the time this season is over. // Credit: Brian Blanco

Some other familiar faces who will wear the single-digit for the first time this year are Ventell Bryant, Frank Nutile and Michael Dogbe. Bryant, who is 519 yards from moving into 11th all-time in conference receiving yards (1,754 yds), will wear number 1 this year. Michael Dogbe who will be on many NFL radars come seasons beginning will sport the number 9 jersey this season. Graduate Frank Nutile looks to be a key leadership figure for the Owls this year. When asked on his teams transitions from last year to now he stated, “We got hot as the year went on, we tried to propell that into winter workouts and summer camp. So I think it’s been pretty evident that were a lot more mature this year and ready to go.”

He will represent the number 8 on gameday.

Many players who have worn the coveted single-digit jersey for the Owls have gone on to achieve more success including Haason Reddick and Dion Dawkins, both 2017 graduates and top selections in the 2017 NFL draft by the Cardinals and Bills respectively.

The Owls will start their season off with an opening matchup against crosstown rivals Villanova on Saturday, September 3rd at 12 noon.

Full Single-Digit list:

  1. Ventell Bryant  2. Delvon Randall *3. Chappelle Russell       
  2. Rob Ritrovato   5. Shaun Bradley 6. Rock Ya-Sin
  3. Ryquell Armstead  8. Frank Nutile 9. Michael Dogbe

*OL Matt Hennessy number 3 in practice/ Back of helmet during game

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