Temple Owls (0-0) vs. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (0-0)
September 2, 2021 6:30 pm EDT
The Line: Rutgers Scarlet Knights -13.5 / Temple Owls +13.5; Over/Under: 51.5
(Click here for latest betting odds)
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights meet Temple Owls Thursday in week 1 2021 college football action at SHI Stadium. Temple has nowhere to go but up after finishing last season with a 1-6 record. Rutgers enters another season under coach Greg Schiano, and they finished 3-6 last season.
The Temple Owls averaged 19.9 points and 348.3 yards per game last season. Temple allowed an average of 37.1 points and 433 yards per game last season. Re-al Mitchell should get the nod at quarterback, and he threw for 233 yards and one touchdown last year in three games. Tayvon Ruley returns at running back after racking up 306 yard and a touchdown, while Jadan Blue and Randle Jones is a receiving duo that combined for more than 700 yards and seven touchdowns. Defensively, William Kwenkeu returns after leading Temple with 49 tackles, Manny Walker had two sacks and Jordan Magee had one interception. Temple simply has to be better defensively if this season is going to be a success. Temple finished last season ranked 110th in scoring defense and 88th in total defense.
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights averaged 26.7 points and 335.3 yards per game last season. Rutgers allowed an average of 32.1 points and 449.1 yards per game last season. Noah Vedral returns at quarterback after throwing for 1,200 yards and nine touchdowns. Isaih Pacheco returns as the leading rusher with 515 yards and three touchdowns while Bo Melton and Shameen Jones is a receiving duo that combined for nine receiving touchdowns. Defensively, Olakunle Fatukasi returns as Rutgers leading tackler with 101 tackles, Mohamed Toure had 4.5 sacks and Christian Izien had four interceptions. The Scarlet Knights have all of their key players returning from last season and have another year under their new head coach. This has the potential to be one of the better seasons for Rutgers in recent memory.
The Owls are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 vs. Big Ten and 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games overall. The Scarlet Knights are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 Thursday games and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 home games. The under is 3-1-1 in Owls last 5 games overall. The under is 4-0 in Scarlet Knights last 4 vs. AAC. The underdog is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
Temple is usually a team you can back confidently in the underdog role, as the Owls get after it defensively and can grind out close games. However, Temple was horrible defensively last season, which includes ranking 110th in scoring defense. The Rutgers Scarlet Knights are as talented as they’ve been in years and should be better prepared with a full offseason under coach Greg Schiano. It’s been a while since Rutgers has been good, but this has a chance to be successful season. Thick number, but I’m on the Rutgers bandwagon for now. I’ll lay the points.