Notre Dame 49, Temple 16 | South Bend, Ind.
Thing is, they played a pretty damn good team in the Fighting Irish, and one looking to make a statement after a rough 2016. On the road. Before a packed, partisan crowd. Nothing to be ashamed of, although any self-respecting Temple supporter certainly would have preferred seeing the team not lose on the scoreboard by 33 points and 276 yards on the stat sheet in head coach Geoff Collins' debut.
2. Reality check ...
Honestly, didn't see a talent gap of 33 points and 276 yards between the two. That being said, the lack of “feel” for coaching in this one screamed out to me. Why in the world did the Owls keep rotating running backs when Ryquel Armstead was eating up 6-, 7-yard gains like a hungry teen in front of a pizza? Not sure on the choice of Logan Marchi ast quarterback, either.
3. Does David Hood have pictures?
Seriously. Not that he's a bad back. In fact, he's pretty solid. But he's certainly no Armstead, and, frankly, he's no Jager Gardner. Yet, he kept getting inserted in for Armstead all too often in this one, which backfired on the Owls as they lost any momentum, and before Gardner. At one point, Armstead had 11 carries for 60 yards. Then 13 for 70. He finished 19 for 67. Yo, stop messing with the flow.
4. Reality II ...
OK, yeah, the officials weren't exactly “on point” in this one. ND's offensive line could have been called for holding on dozens of plays, including more than one TD snap, and a blatant block in the back was missed that allowed a long Irish run. Conversely, Temple got flagged for a roughing the passer penalty that was ridiculous. Was like a bang-bang play at first base – no way worthy of some laundry. That being said, gotta play through that stuff if you wanna be legit, Owls. Just gotta deal with it.
5. Unis a thumbs up
Give Collins this, he has an eye for flair. Went with the Owls' best road combo – the cherry helmet, white jersey, cherry pants motiff. Pretty sweet. Didn't take a back seat to ND at all there, and the Irish always look good at home in blue and gold. Here's hoping Temple opts for something comparable next week when it hosts Philly rival Villanova at the Linc.
- Jack Kerwin | firstname.lastname@example.org