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Predictions: Notre Dame vs. Temple

| Friday, September 1, 2017

Ben Padanilam — Editor-in-Chief

Yes, we all remember that the Irish finished 4-8 last season. It spurred many changes, leaving the Irish with new faces at just about every major spot that isn’t head coach.

So Brian Kelly and his team will certainly be motivated to start the season strong, and they have plenty of talent to do it. But the same could have been said of last year’s squad.

This Notre Dame team is still fairly young, and its new faces will have its share of early growing pains. But fortunately for the Irish, they’ll face a Temple squad that lost a lot from last year’s 10-win group. With the Owls having too many unanswered questions and not enough talent to make up for it, the Irish will be able to come away with the win it wishes it had opened last season with.

FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 34, Temple 21

Marek Mazurek — Assistant Managing Editor

My prediction is more a reflection of my feeling about the season as a whole rather than just the Temple game.

Brian Kelly made several good hires in the offseason after he admitted he screwed up a bunch of things. But a bunch of new coaches and some new freshmen don’t make the Irish a championship contender. The secondary looks very suspect and the depth on the defensive line should be very worrying.

And hey, Temple has a lot of grit. They certainly aren’t as talented as the Irish, but then again, the Irish were more talented than almost every team they played last year and still lost.

I can very easily see Temple hanging around for too long in a game it has no business being in.

FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 35, Temple 28

Elizabeth Greason — Sports Editor

The Irish have too much riding on their first game of the season to drop it to Temple, who will be playing its first game under head coach Geoff Collins.

Temple’s depth chart is covered in question marks, most notably at the quarterback position, where the Owls have yet to name a starter. As Notre Dame learned last season, waiting until the last second to name a starter during a quarterback battle, or not naming one at all, does not always yield results.

Notre Dame has too much to prove after its abysmal 4-8 season. Junior quarterback Brandon Wimbush is ready to shine under center, and the Irish offense is prepared to help him do so. While the defense is more questionable and will still give up points, Notre Dame is a team that is ready to go and showcase all the changes it has put in place since last season.

FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 34, Temple 13

Tobias Hoonhout — Associate Sports Editor

For months, this team has been waiting to make sure that last year’s disappointing campaign is only a one-time blot on Brian Kelly’s Notre Dame tenure and not the beginning of the end. And while Kelly may be in the hot seat, this team really isn’t.

There’s been plenty of turnover in personnel and coaching, and maybe most importantly, there aren’t many people who think the Irish are legit contenders. But in the end, what really matters is the product on the field, and it’s clear that top to bottom, this team feels very strongly about what they are putting together.

It’s a new season, with a newly renovated stadium no less, and Temple looks like a team who happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 45, Temple 7

Daniel O’Boyle — Sports Writer

In just four seasons with the Owls, former head coach Matt Rhule built something special, earning Temple its first and second ever 10-win seasons. More than that, he built a program that shouldn’t fall apart after his departure to Baylor and could continue to challenge for AAC titles and upset Power-5 opposition.

But probably not in head coach Geoff Collins’s first year, and almost certainly not his first game. Temple is replacing too much too soon to expect a repeat of 2015’s 24-20 nailbiter: It returns only four defensive starters, loses versatile running back Jahad Thomas and still hasn’t named a replacement for quarterback P.J. Walker. It may not be a blowout, but it’s hard to see a team with this little experience run the Irish too close.

FINAL SCORE: Notre Dame 31, Temple 14

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