Temple returned home for the first time in over a month, and did exactly what Temple fans have become accustomed to this season: win. Temple destroyed AAC opponent Tulane in front of 35,179 fans in historic fashion. The Owls racked up a homecoming record 49 points, while five different Owls found their way into the end zone. Temple is now 5-0 for the first time since 1974.
A slow offensive start plagued the offense once again, as the first two drives resulted in a lost fumble and a three & out. The teams combined for nine fumbles in the 1st half alone. It took almost all of the first quarter for the offense to heat up, but once it did, there was no stopping it. Down 3-0 near the end of the 1st, P.J. Walker hooked up with Robby Anderson for 3 completions for 60 yards on a scoring drive. Anderson capped off the drive by hauling in a floater in the back of the end zone that put the Owls up 7-3.
The defense then forced Tulane into a 4th down, but the Green Wave caught a lucky break, recovering a special teams mishap. Artrel Foster was in the wrong place at the wrong time, as the punt deflected off of his thigh pad, and Tulane gained possession. Tanner Lee answered the bell, as he found Teddy Veal on a rollout to make it 10-7 Tulane.
Temple would heat up and stay rolling rest of the afternoon.
After Tulane punter Zachary Block fumbled a snap and was taken down at the Temple 12 yard line, Jahad Thomas responded as he burst through a hole for a 10 yard touchdown run. Thomas finished the day with 54 yards on the ground and two total touchdowns.
Walker’s second touchdown pass also found Thomas, as he took a screen pass scurried down the left sideline for a 16 yard score. Walker threw for an efficient 183 yards and two touchdowns while completing 11 of his 15 pass attempts.
The teams would head into halftime with Temple leading 21-10.
Ryquell Armstead showed his value today behind Thomas. Relieving the premier back in the 3rd quarter, the freshman found the end zone for the first time as an Owl from 16 yards out to make it 28-10. He added another 16 yard scoring run later in the game.
Temple’s defense was dominant once again, limiting the Green Wave to only 8 rushing yards on 17 attempts. The secondary continued to give opposing quarterbacks fits, as Tanner Lee threw for just 102 yards and was picked off twice. The first came courtesy of Sean Chandler, who took a tipped ball down the left sideline for a touchdown, sending the Temple faithful into a frenzy and extending the lead to 35-10. Tyler Matakevich, the cornerstone of the Temple D, flew around the field all day and racked up 7 tackles. That total brought him to 399 career stops. The defense did not let Tulane keep the ball moving, as the Green Wave could only muster 2/15 3rd down conversions.
Next up for the Owls is another AAC matchup. Temple will be back at home next Saturday to face off against UCF. That game will kick off at 7:30 under the lights.