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Rod Carey welcomes first recruiting class at Temple for 2020 Early Signing Day

His first class includes two Power Five transfers and 19 three-star prospects

NCAA Football: Maryland at Temple Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Rod Carey took the head coaching job for the Temple Owls after Early Signing Day last season. It was a whirlwind effort to find the next head coach for the Owls after Geoff Collins left for Georgia Tech. Carey only got the job after Manny Diaz went back to Miami to take their abrupt head coaching vacancy. It was Diaz who held the press conference to welcome the 2019 recruits.

It was a struggle for Diaz to get players to commit after the first coaching change. Players had less than a couple weeks to decide if they want to spend the next four or five years at Temple. It resulted in the Owls finishing with the 105th recruiting class in 2019, according to 24/7 Sports.

Mark Richt announced his retirement and suddenly Temple was without a coach again. It wasn’t until nearly a month later that Carey got the job. His task was taking over a team that essentially had zero loyalty to him whatsoever. He didn’t recruit a single one of these players.

Carey has now had a full season at Temple. The regular season ended with an 8-4 mark and the Owls will take on North Carolina in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27. It was another winning season despite all the uncertainty heading into the year. It was also his first year to completely dive into recruiting at North Philadelphia.

This will be the first full recruiting class for Carey and the Owls welcome 20 new athletes to the program. Temple has added 22 players thus far in the 2020 Early Signing Day period, two of which are Power Five transfers that are hopeful to be eligible immediately.

The Owls will welcome wide receiver Nazir Burnett, previously of Georgia Tech, and tight end Darius Pittman from Purdue. Both will go through the eligibility process with the NCAA, and should get ample playing time if their requests are granted. Burnett was expected to join Temple in last year’s class, but followed Collins to Atlanta. The Harrisburg, Pa. native appeared in just a few games before entering the transfer portal, and will return closer to home. The addition of Pittman will fill the void left by Kenny Yeboah announcing he would put his name in the transfer portal.

There is still some time for others to sign, but 19 others have signed letters of intent with the Owls. All 19 commits are three-star recruits, according to 24/7 Sports, ranking the 2020 class at 84th in the nation and eighth in the American Athletic Conference. Cincinnati landed two four-star prospects, the only AAC team to do so. The Bearcats finished with the top recruiting class in the conference.

Below is the complete list of the 2020 recruiting class.

Temple Owls 2020 Early Signing Day Results

Name Position Height / Weight School Hometown
Name Position Height / Weight School Hometown
Kobe Wilson LB 6' / 210 Parkview Lilburn, GA
Sam Davis OL 6'3 / 263 Geneva Geneva, OH
Nick Bagashvili DT 6'3 / 280 Tottenville Staten Island, NY
Darian Varner DT 6'1 / 250 Maury Norfolk, VA
Miles Zietek OT 6'5 / 262 Germany Germany
Matthew Duncan QB 6'2 / 198 Ashley Ridge Summerville, SC
DJ Woodbury S 6'2 / 190 Burlington City Burlington, NJ
Zae Baines WR 6'3 / 180 North Cross Roanoke, VA
Trey Blair ATH 5'11 / 195 Haverford Haverford, PA
Bryce Thoman OL 6'5 / 275 Central Dauphin Harrisburg, PA
Demerick Morris DT 6'3 / 285 Phillips Academy Chicago, IL
Muheem McCargo RB 5'11 / 200 Woodrow Wilson Camden, NJ
Jalen Ware S 6' / 185 Copiah-Lincoln C.C. Wesson, MS
Chevez Trask DE 6'5 / 210 Evans Evans, GA
James Della Pesca LB 6'3 / 225 Pascack Valley Hillsdale, NJ
Daiyaan Hawkins CB 5'11 / 170 Haverford Haverford, PA
Dyshier Clary DE 6'2 / 220 Woodrow Wilson Camden, NJ
Alex Odom ATH 6'1 / 180 Kingsway Swedesboro, NJ
Garrett Williams S 5'10 / 190 King's Folk Suffolk, VA
Nazir Burnett WR 6'1 / 175 Georgia Tech Harrisburg, PA
Darius Pittman TE 6'3 / 285 Purdue Bay Saint Louis, MS