Free Week 1 Prediction: Black Knights vs Owls Odds
Looking for Army Black Knights vs. Temple Owls free picks? Week 1 College football betting sees the Black Knights taking on the Owls Friday, September 2nd at Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Cappers Picks provides complimentary handicapping picks all NCAA football season long so stay tuned for more FREE college football predictions.
(0-0) Army Black Knights vs. Temple Owls (0-0)
Date: Friday, September 2nd
Time: 7:00 PM
Venue: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
NCAA Football Spread: Temple -16.0
NCAA Betting Total: 46.5
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Temple surprised everyone last season on their way to a 10-4 record and a berth in the 2015 AAC Championship game. They won’t surprise anyone this year but also could struggle a bit as they bring back just 6 starters on each side of the ball.
Army will bring back 16 and will look to rebound from last year’s 2-10 season.
Temple still doesn’t seem to be getting much respect in this game though as just 16.5 point favorites. Army was bad last season and doesn’t figure to be too much better this year.
And, Temple’s performance wasn’t a fluke but rather the product of a building process that has attracted better talent – coaching and players.
Army Black Knights
Army brings back 7 offensive starters including their quarterback, Chris Carter. The offense is built around the run game and the unit averaged 4.8 yards per carry last season.
They rushed for 24 touchdowns and over 244 yards per game. This is Army’s offensive style and they stick with it regardless of how well it is working.
Army attempted only 108 passes in 12 games last season and completed just 45 percent of them.
Their defense surrendered 27.8 points per game last season so the benefit of bringing 9 starters is limited. Expect that defense to have a difficult time keeping Temple’s dual threat QB PJ Walker in check.
If Army can capitalize on an inexperienced Temple defense, they will have a shot. But they’ll need to put up a bunch of points to outlast Temple. Oddsmakers expect this to be low-scoring though and I agree.
After a 10-4 campaign, Temple didn’t get much respect with this spread. The Black Knights went 2-10 last season.
Temple’s defense held up against quality opponents – not just bottom feeders of the AAC. They held Memphis’s explosive offense to 12
points as well as Notre Dame and Houston to just 24 each. The defense was legit in 2015.
In 2016, they will be without leading tackler and all-time Temple great in LB Tyler Matakevich. He led the team in tackles in every game last season and all four of his years at Temple. That type of defensive production – along with his leadership – will be difficult to replace.
That being said, Temple will bring back three linebackers that were their number 2, 6, and 7 tacklers from the unit so their experience there could help fill Matakevich’s void.
Temple was the 24th best rushing defense in the nation last season so they should hold up well against Army’s rushing attack.
In last season’s AAC Championship game, the Owls only held Houston to 233 rushing yards. But, 148 of those came from quarterback Greg Ward, Jr. He is a dual-threat, Heisman caliber player who is a threat to throw. Black Knight QB Carter is nowhere near that type of threat.
PJ Walker will continue as the Owls’ playcaller after a strong 2015 season. Walker’s 19/8 TD to INT ratio and 125.3 quarterback rating were a big part of Temple’s success along with their defense.
NCAA Football Handicapping Trends
- Temple are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 against Independent schools
- Temple were 9-5 ATS last season
- Army were 5-6-1 ATS last season
- Temple were 5-1 ATS at home last season
- Army are 6-21-1 ATS in their last 28 road games
Free Week 1 NCAA Football Prediction
Sure, Army has a dynamic rushing attack with many guys that can hurt you. But, Temple has built a strong defensive unit that has confidence and experience after last season’s breakout year.
The Owls averaged 7.4 tackles for loss per game which will be huge in limiting the Black Knight rushing attack.
4* Free NCAA Betting Pick: Temple -16.5
The Owls open with a very soft schedule with four of their first five at home but will be eager to get rolling right away. I expect Walker to be fantastic and the defense to show they can be as capable as last season’s team.
Week 1 Free Score Prediction: Temple 35 – Army 14
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