Temple football vs. Memphis Preview and Prediction

temple football

It’s week 8 in the college football season but Temple football is playing its third game of the season (1-1) and Memphis is playing its fourth (1-2).

The Temple Owls are looking for their first road win of the season after winning their home opener last week against USF 39-37. Temple was a 12-point favorite, but it came down to the Owls needing a stop on a two-point conversion with 1:03 left to go in the game to secure the victory.

The Owls offense has been fine, averaging 34 points per game and 411.5 yards per game. The running game has been stellar led by sophomore running back Re’Mahn Davis (156 yards per game). However, quarterback Anthony Russo has been inconsistent - completing 70.8% of his passes - but also threw three interceptions in two games against very bad defenses. He has been spreading the wealth and four wide receivers have over 100 yards receiving (led by Randle Jones with 129).

On the other side of the ball, Temple’s defense has been awful - giving up 34 points per game - and giving up 230 rushing yards per game. It has been unable to make the big stop. Teams are 6 of 6 on fourth down against Temple. That needs to improve against this elite Memphis Tigers offense.

The Tigers have lost two elite coaches in three years with Justin Fuente (Virginia Tech) and Mike Norvell (Florida State) leaving for bigger programs. New coach Ryan Silverfield has schemed a strong offense that just won a shootout at home against UCF 50-49. The Tigers trailed 49-37 with 5:29 to go when senior QB Brady White marched them down the field twice in the final four minutes to secure the victory.

White is having another spectacular season with 1,062 yards 13 touchdowns and three interceptions. A lot of talent has come through this Tigers program in recent years, and senior Damonte Coxie will most likely be the next Tigers skill position player drafted to the NFL.

This year’s Tigers offense is so deep that Coxie, who has had two straight 1,000-yard seasons, is presently third in the teams receiving yards with 175 yards behind tight end Sean Dykes with 279 yards. Like Temple, they do need to improve on the defensive side of the ball as Memphis is allowing 34.3 points and 590.3 yards per game.

Betting info

Here’s an interesting stat in the Temple-Memphis history: The underdog is 5-0 against the spread in its last five meetings, and the Owls are 5-0 against the spread in their last five meetings vs Memphis. Also, the Tigers have not lost a home game since October of 2018, and I don’t see that streak ending on Saturday.

This should be a high scoring affair as both teams have bad defenses so the very high over-under (71) is not surprising. The Owls are 2-5 against the spread in their last seven road games. The Tigers are 14-6-1 against the spread in their last 21 home games. The stats point to a potential Temple cover, but I don’t see it happening. If it can’t stop the USF or Navy offenses, I don’t see Temple getting consistent stops versus Memphis either.

Prediction: Memphis 45, Temple 31

Date: Oct. 24, 2020
Time: Noon ET
Spread: Memphis -13
Over/Under 71