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USF Bulls vs. Temple Owls Preview & Prediction

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One team is red hot. The other is not.

Temple v Houston Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Date: Saturday, November 17, 2018

Kickoff Time: 12:00 p.m. ET

Location: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Watch: ESPNews

All-Time Series: Tied, 2-2

Last Meeting: 9/21/17. USF 43 - Temple 7

Betting Lines: Temple -14, O/U 61


South Florida Bulls Outlook

USF started the season 7-0, but the record didn’t really tell the truth about them. They needed fourth-quarter rallies to get three of those wins and trailed in all but one of those wins.

Then, they started playing quality opponents and things have gone off the rails. The Bulls have lost three straight, all by double digits. Blake Barnett missed last week’s game and Charlie Strong used two quarterbacks in his absence.

The Bulls offense revolves around Jordan Cronkrite and Johnny Ford, each averaging over 6.5 yards per touch. USF is ranked 39th in rushing offense, averaging 205 yards per game. They will be heavily relied upon in the event Barnett missed another game, but it will be the other side of the ball that will be the bigger concern.

Temple running back Ryquell Armstead is coming off a six-touchdown performance against Houston, and now gets the 11th-ranked rushing defense in the conference. If USF is going to put an end to their losing streak, it starts with limiting Armstead from having another monster outing.

Temple Owls Outlook

It will be Senior Day at The Linc and it could be a historic one for the current crop of seniors. The current senior class has won 33 games over the last four years, tied with last year‘s class for the most in program history. A win on Saturday will put them in a category of their own.

Delvon Randall has been the leader for this class on one side of the ball, while Ventell Bryant, Temple’s all-time leader in receiving yards, headlines the offensive seniors set to play their final game at The Linc. In all, 19 seniors will take the field at for the last time in Philadelphia.

When healthy, Armstead is arguably the best back in the AAC. His six-touchdown game last week was a conference record, and he has gashed UCF and Houston to the tune of 342 yards in his last two games after missing the two games prior with an ankle injury.

The key for the Owls will be Anthony Russo limiting his mistakes. His collegiate career got off to a rough start with five interceptions compared to just one touchdown in his first four games in action. During Temple’s stretch of winning four of their last five games, he’s thrown 12 touchdowns and seven picks.

Prediction

The Owls’ senior class is already unique in that they are the only class to ever play in four bowl games. With one more win, they become the best ever. That’s a big deal to this group of young men.

USF is on the opposite end of spectrum. They’ve lost three straight, have a tough matchup this week on the road and the most important game of the season - the War on I-4 - up next. A 7-0 start likely ends with five straight losses.

They do need some help - UCF to lose to both Cincinnati and USF in the next two weeks - but the Owls are still alive in the race for the AAC East after an 0-2 start to the season. Armstead has another big day as Temple sends their seniors out in style.

Temple 44 - USF 28