Penn State will play host to a Temple team that is coming off of a bye, following a loss to Maryland. Next to Ohio State, this is the closest thing to a rivalry game on Penn State’s schedule and will be an official BlueOut for the fans. Here is the Victory Bell Rings staff opinions on the game!
Matt de Bear:
It will be a couple more years before the Owls get a chance to end the 71 year losing streak against Penn State. Last week’s win vs. Navy will allow the Lions to relax and just play football. Temple’s run heavy offense (just 12 pass completions in 2 games) plays right into PSU’s strength, the defensive front 7. Not to mention, any team that has a home loss to Maryland on their resume has some issues.
Penn State plays the last of their non-conference slate this weekend as they take on the Temple Owls at Beaver Stadium. While these two teams have played quite a few times since the 1940′s, the Temple Owls haven’t defeated Penn State since October 18, 1941. This is a fact the Temple faithful having been wearing like Hester Prynne’s Scarlet “A” – they are reminded about it constantly! Last year was Temple’s best shot at an upset in quite some time, but the bid fell just short in the fourth quarter. Both teams have different personnel in key places this year, and it appears that Temple is the one who may have taken the biggest step backwards.
Temple’s defensive weakness seems to be their rush defense while Penn State’s offensive Achilles heel is their rushing game. This game seems like the perfect opportunity for the Nittany Lions to get well in that area of their game before they head into Big Ten play. Look for the Penn State rushing attack to get their first 100 yard rusher of the season while Matt McGloin throws for less than 200 yards. Don’t worry, the passing yards won’t be needed in this game. Temple gets a late score to make the final look closer than the game actually was. Not even the transfer of former Nittany Lion QB Kevin Newsome to Temple this offseason can help them this week. Look for Penn State to push the Temple losing streak to 71 years!
Temple won 26 games over the last three years as former head coach Al Golden had the program turned around and headed in the right direction. They’ve lost quite a few players, some to the NFL, since then and even during their best years they could never quite figure out how to beat Penn State. I think Temple’s one dimensional offense really hurts them this year and Penn State rolls to get to 2-2 in their non-conference schedule.
1941. That was the last season that Temple beat Penn State in football. Temple has come close to knocking off its in-state older brother the past couple years but it still hasn’t broken through. Fortunately for Penn State, this Temple team doesn’t seem as strong as the past few that nearly beat the Nittany Lions. Bernard Pierce, the former standout running back for the Owls who really hurt Penn State in the past, is now in the NFL. Temple is still no pushover, but they did lose to a very weak Maryland team at home in their last game. Penn State can’t overlook Temple with conference play looming because this seems like a prime spot for an upset if the Nittany Lions underestimate this opponent. But if Matt McGloin continues to air it out like he has been and if the defense continues to create turnovers, then the winning streak against Temple should continue.
Temple has a poor passing game-probably no better than Navy’s. The 9 point spread hasn’t moved down so PSU is getting some respect. I think the spread should be higher.
Temple fan’s hatred of Penn State continues this year as Penn State dominates Temple, covering the spread easily. With the loss of Brenard Pierce to the NFL and a very dismal passing game, Temple is unable to move the ball against PSU in any meaningful way. Moreover, Penn State’s offense progresses yet again this week and posts it’s best offensive performance of the year, putting up 4 touchdowns and a field goal from Sam Ficken.
Despite Penn State going another game without a rushing TD, the reliable passing game and increasingly opportunistic defense is too much for Temple. Like a few others have mentioned, Temple no longer has their bruising RB, and with a lackluster passing game, finds themselves over-matched. I don’t see Belton or Day playing, which leaves PSU digging deep into their reserves; however, McGloin will continue to play smarter, not turn the ball over, and feed the beast that is Robinson. Penn State’s defense should have another solid day. Lastly, though it’s a popular pick to say he will, I don’t believe Ficken adds any field goals.
It’s unanimous: VBR likes Penn State to beat Temple!