Tulsa-Temple: Owls Have Been Great Bet in AAC Games

Sunday, September 16, 2018 9:38 PM UTC

Sunday, Sep. 16, 2018 9:38 PM UTC

The lone Thursday night game in Week 4 of the NCAA season is a bit of a yawner from the AAC as Tulsa and Temple tangle from Philadelphia.

Matthew's 2018 NCAAF ATS Record: 4-3

Tulsa (1-2, 1-2 ATS) at Temple (1-2, 1-2 ATS)Thursday, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)Free NCAAF Pick: Owls (at -6.5)Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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I thought Atlantic Coast Conference games were largely the staple of ESPN’s Thursday coverage, but it’s American Athletic Conference action this week in the lone game of the night as Tulsa visits Temple. Meh. Guess I’ll have to get used to Tulsa because it plays two Thursdays from now as well in Houston. Temple plays again on a Thursday come Nov. 1 at UCF.

Temple’s first year in the AAC was 2013 and Tulsa’s 2014, but they’ve played just once twice as conference members with Temple winning both. The Owls prevailed 43-22 in Tulsa to close the 2017 regular season. Frank Nutile threw for 262 yards and three touchdowns as the Owls became bowl eligible. They won the Gasparilla Bowl over FIU 28-3 to finish 7-6.

The Golden Hurricane closed last year losing five straight to finish 2-10. Just two years ago, Coach Philip Montgomery was a rising star in the industry with his up-tempo offense as Tulsa finished 10-3 and won a bowl game, but that season is looking more and more like a fluke.

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Temple football:
-Lose at home to Nova, Buffalo
-Win on the road at Maryland

Go Owls! pic.twitter.com/tWaO9sU3W4

— David Gough (@DGough94) September 15, 2018
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Owls Off Huge Upset

Temple looked like it would start 0-3 for the first time since 2013 as the Owls lost at home to FCS school Villanova and then MAC team Buffalo. They were 16-point underdogs this past Saturday at 2-0 Maryland but stunned the Terps 35-14. Temple stacked the box and dared Maryland to beat it through the air.

Alas, the Terps threw for just 63 yards and managed 195 total in what was a lousy Saturday overall for the Big Ten. Redshirt sophomore Anthony Russo threw for 228 yards and a score in his first career start – Nutile was held out due to injury (not clear if he plays here) -- to lead Temple, while Ryquell Armstead rushed for 118 yards on 26 carries. The Owls held Maryland to 1-for-12 on third down and picked off two passes.

Tulsa’s lone win came over FCS school Central Arkansas in Week 1. The Golden Hurricane followed that up with a competitive 28-21 loss at Texas. Down 21-0, Tulsa scored touchdowns on its final three possessions – alas, it also allowed one to the Horns. Tulsa had four drives end inside the Texas 26 with none resulting in points. That game saw Tulsa’s streak of 16 straight with at least one 100-yard rusher end. Shamari Brooks was held to 66 yards.

Then on Saturday, Tulsa was upset 29-20 at home by Arkansas State. Brooks started a new 100-yard streak with 115 on 21 carries but didn’t score. He and fellow sophomore Corey Taylor are a solid 1-2 punch (Taylor had 32 yards and a TD on Saturday) replacing D’Angelo Brewer, who rushed for 1,517 yards and nine scores last year.

Tulsa turned it over three times vs. ASU. The Golden Hurricane scored on their first possession but Arkansas State had the next 27. Defensively, Tulsa hasn’t allowed a 100-yard rusher since last year’s loss to Temple. That defense lost starting cornerback Cristian Williams to retirement before the ASU game. He announced that via Instagram. Williams had a career-high 11 tackles vs. Texas.

  • Golden Hurricane are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games in September.
  • Owls are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 Thursday games.
  • Owls are 8-2 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.

Go Owls for a Thursday NCAAF pick but definitely shop around for 6.5 points or if not available take that on the alternate spread. Temple has covered an excellent 21 of its past 27 AAC games.

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