Staff predictions: Notre Dame vs. Temple
Observer Sports Staff | Friday, October 30, 2015
Greg Hadley, Editor-in-Chief
In an odd twist of fate, Notre Dame is relying on games against Temple and Pitt to bulk up its strength of schedule after early-season opponents such as Texas and Georgia Tech crumbled.
Temple, however, is hardly a juggernaut Notre Dame has to fear. While the Owls may be undefeated, their own strength of schedule is positively anemic, and their offense is even more so, ranking 108th in the FBS.
The Irish defense will have a strong game Saturday but not the field day it should have. Meanwhile, Temple’s defense simply hasn’t faced an offense with the talent and depth of Notre Dame. Despite some early miscues, the Irish will pull away but fail to crack 30 points for only the second time this season.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 28, Temple 13
Mary Green, Assistant Managing Editor
This game certainly won’t be as big a cakewalk as many people thought heading into the season. Temple brings to the table an undefeated record, plenty of momentum, a staunch defense and what should be a raucous crowd in an NFL stadium known for its boisterousness.
However, noise can be overcome, momentum can be shifted the other way, and this defense hasn’t faced a running back the likes of C.J. Prosise yet, or an air attack led by Will Fuller, who will be eager to put on a show in his hometown.
The game won’t be a blowout, but it won’t be close, either. Notre Dame should be able to win comfortably and hand the Owls their first loss.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 35, Temple 17
Zach Klonsinski, Sports Editor
Notre Dame has gotten off to slow starts too many times this season for me to believe the Irish will have this game in hand at halftime, and I don’t see Irish fans feeling completely comfortable through three quarters even.
That said, it’ll be hard for Temple to hang with the talent level on this Notre Dame squad, which is far and above anything else the Owls have faced all season. If the Irish keep it clean on offense and special teams — i.e. don’t turn the football over — Notre Dame should be able to continue its climb back to the top of the College Football Playoff conversation.
Look for Philadelphia native Will Fuller to continue adding to his growing list of long touchdown catches.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 41, Temple 27
Alex Carson, Associate Sports Editor
With College GameDay in Philadelphia this week, expect Temple to come out and put forth a spirited performance. The Owls have run the ball well this year and defended even better, but they haven’t yet faced a team with the talent of this Notre Dame squad.
If the Irish show up from the start, they shouldn’t have too much of an issue here. The offensive line won’t have an issue opening up holes for C.J. Prosise, and the threat of Will Fuller over the top should keep Temple from packing too many in the box.
It’s the only game between two top-25 teams on the docket this week — and the Irish will be ready to take it comfortably to notch their best win of the year before Tuesday’s playoff rankings release.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 37, Temple 16
Brian Plamondon, Sports Writer
With a weak slate of games Saturday, there will be a lot of eyes on Notre Dame at Temple when it kicks off in primetime. With College GameDay in town, the Owls will be more fired up than ever, too.
Although Notre Dame is notorious for drawing games out until the fourth quarter, I just don’t see Temple hanging in there for very long. Yes, the Owls are undefeated, but they looked sluggish all game against a middling East Carolina team last week. Couple that with their nail-biter against a Massachusetts team Notre Dame handled, and this one has the makings of a convincing Irish win.
DeShone Kizer and the offense might need time to get into a rhythm against a strong Temple defense, but other than that, it should be smooth sailing.
FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 31, Temple 14