SMU Mustangs at Temple Owls Preview

Mustang fans can expect plenty of read-end-option plays from QB Ben Hicks on Saturday. Photo Courtesy: Sandy McAnally
Mustang fans can expect plenty of read-end-option plays from QB Ben Hicks on Saturday.
Photo Courtesy: Sandy McAnally
Watch YOUR Texas Rangers at Big Shucks!
Watch SMU take on Temple at Big Shucks!

Brought to you by: Big Shucks

By Zach Walker

Game Info
SMU Mustangs vs Temple Owls
Saturday – October 1 – 11:00 a.m.
Lincoln Financial Field – Philadelphia – Pennsylvania

Records Before the Game
SMU Mustangs: 2-2 (0-0 in AAC)
Temple Owls: 2-2 (0-0 in AAC)

Who’s got the advantage?
When SMU has the ball: The TCU game was, hopefully, the season low point. The offense was just flat. They had their moments, but then would just cool off quickly. Of course, the TCU defense deserves heaps of the credit, but here’s hoping the ineptitude does not follow into conference play. The running game needs to get the wheels back under themselves. Braeden West leads the team in rushing, and really, in overall effectiveness. Ke’Mon Freeman has really started to come on strong as the punishing bruiser back. Through four games Temple has allowed a tick over 180 yards per game on the ground, and I know that’s something that Chad Morris is going to want to eclipse. The Owls haven’t been nearly as generous through the air. The Owls have four picks and have allowed only two touchdowns through the air. Ben Hicks is going to have to really step up and push the envelope. Courtland Sutton wasn’t allowed into the endzone against TCU, but had another 100 yard game. James Proche has really shown his ability through four games, with great route running and strong hands. The Temple defense has been aggressive, forcing ten turnovers and only allowing teams 20 points per game. ADVANTAGE: TEMPLE – I need Hicks to show something, but I believe the Mustangs will move the ball on the ground.

When Temple has the ball: P.J. Walker hasn’t played his best football early in this season. He’s played extremely poor in three games, and had a fantastic performance against Penn State. The Owls running game hasn’t been the same as past either. Though effective on a rush average basis, but Jahad Thomas and Ryquell Armstead only have 274 yards between the two of them through four games. If and when P.J. Walker gets going, he’s got a trio of receivers to target: Keith Kirkwood, Brodrick Yancy, and Adonis Jennings. The Mustangs can’t afford to have happen again, what happened against TCU. When Darrion Millines got ejected in the second quarter, it changed the Horned Frogs attack plan. Millines has been excellent this season, and when he’s on the field it’s a different look, when he’s been off, it’s been an open door. Horace Richardson has been a lock-down corner through four games, and Jordan Wyatt on the opposite side has been very good as well, in a very solid secondary. ADVANTAGE: SMU – This game is oddly similar, because passing games are underwhelming thus far this season.

What will it take for the Mustangs to win?
The offense needs to wake up and not leave the defense to take a beating of keeping a game close.

Prediction: SMU 24 – Temple 20