The Easiest Money In All of Sports

First week has the Owls favored by 19. I would stay away from that.

First week has the Owls favored by 19. I would stay away from that, but Indiana covering the 4 at FIU looks tempting, as does Paul Johnson covering the same number at Steve Addazio.


For a lot of us, probably me included, it is a good thing we don’t live in Las Vegas.

We would either be living in a poor house or a mansion but probably not in between.

I don’t feel a great urge to gamble much, but when I see certain things involving Temple football—like last year’s ambush of a bowl game in Boca Raton or last year’s opener in South Philadelphia—the urge is strong enough to walk to Las Vegas and place a few sheckles on an event. (I know tons of friends who do bet online and leave their credit card information offshore, but I am not willing to do that.)


I would never bet against the Owls, but the administration put the team in an impossible spot with really nothing to win by beating Toledo last year and a few dollars would have eased my pain for that loss I saw coming a mile away.

This year’s “easiest money in all of sports” involves the Owls’ third game of the season, a Sept. 17th date at Penn State. The Owls are 6.5-point underdogs and they shouldn’t be. Looking at this objectively, which I can do (see last year’s pre-Toledo post), I cannot see how this should be anything but a pick-em at worst and a slight Owl lean at best.

That’s why grabbing the 6.5 now is a gift you can thank me for later.

My reasoning is simple. Two relatively easy tuneups, Army and Stony Brook, ease some talented newcomers into the lineup to help the holdovers and bring them up to speed. Penn State has a tough, emotional, game at Pitt the week before and that will take a lot out of Nits. (They don’t think it will be emotional, but Pitt will hit them in the chops and they will respond but the fight could be bloody.)

This year’s version of the Owls’ defense—which returns three starters at linebacker in Stephaun Marshall, Avery Williams and Jarred Alwan—return. Despite the loss of Tyler Matakevich, this should be a better linebacker group. They are faster and better at pass coverage and, in Alwan’s words, their “chemistry is ridiculous.” Ridiculous, as in good. The linemen in front of them—Haason Reddick, Karamo Dioubate, Avery Robinson, Greg Webb and either Praise Martin-Oguike or Sharif Finch—represent the fastest Temple group in the last decade. There is solid depth behind them with guys like Michael Dogbe and Freddy Booth-Lloyd, who can easily fight themselves into the starting lineup.

With a four-year starter at quarterback in Phillip Walker, and an All-AAC running back like Jahad Thomas, the offense should not have too much difficulty moving the ball against Penn State. On the other side of the field, Penn State will have a rookie quarterback facing a four-year starter.

Mix all of that in, and a don’t think a home-field advantage is going to be enough to rattle these Owls. In fact, I think the South Florida game at home later in the season will be much tougher to win.

Wednesday: Don’t Mess With Phil

Friday: Checking Off The Boxes

Monday: The Andres Blanco Of Temple

Wednesday (7/20): Recharging The Batteries

Friday (7/22): Owls Will Internet

Monday (7/25): The Unwashed Masses

22 thoughts on “The Easiest Money In All of Sports

  1. I’m truly looking forward to that USF game as the premier home game this season, could be epic. Can’t wait…. 53 days until Army!

    • The ONLY good thing about summer coming to an end (and sadly it does every year), is Temple football beginning. Particularly in a year like this one when the outside world (the unwashed masses, I like to call them) thinks Temple takes a step back. We who follow the team closely know better. This is the “step forward” year to a school-record in wins. If anything, the “step back” year is next year. As for USF, I see it as the same type of game as the 2012 game at LFF. High-scoring, exciting, with the Owls coming out with a 37-28 type win. That game, they needed a blocked field goal–a true miracle win.

  2. I like SMU laying 10 against at North Texas as well.

  3. Take Appalachian State and Bowling Green with points….,

    Temple vs PSU: wrong last year, hopefully wrong again this year, Temple loses on two critical turnovers

    USF vs Temple: the team going into the game with the healthiest starting line-up will win…,

    Temple vs Memphis: the Owls roll

    Temple vs UCONN: Temple wins in OT

    ACC Championship Game: Temple goes back to Houston and comes home with another loss, MR accepts an offer nobody can turn

    Lesser Bowl Game: TBD.., outcome will determine two of The Big Three including Top 25 finish

    • getting that Houston game at home this year will be the key. I agree with you when you said in the past that the goal should be to win the AAC and get in a BCS bowl game.

  4. I think it’s a nice development overall that we’re a “marked” opponent for basically every opponent this season, but marked for revenge/big win and not as a Varsity Letter day Win.

  5. Parlay PSU against Pitt and TU against PSU. Can’ see PSU losing by 15 to Pitt or TU losing by 12 and a half to PSU..

  6. If the Owls clobber Army, who I think could be tough this year, the rest of the season will be looking very good. PSU will be tough – no gaurantees there, but certianly winnable. SF and Houston, wait and see.

  7. Mike, in your survey, is it really possible TU could go to the national championship game or is that sarcasm, like the person who voted on that game? I mean even if Temple went undefeated the committee would find some excuse(s) to leave them out of the final 4.

    • Only possible if PSU wins the Big 10 and it is only loss is home to an unbeaten Temple. Possible, yes, within the realm of mathematical possibility so I stuck it in there just in case. Would love to see Hooter lifting that NC trophy, though.


  8. Theobold out by unanimous vote. Yikes

    • We’re fu*ked. Although the stadium got another thumbs-up vote today (traffic feasibility study approved), this does nothing for Matt Rhule, who might see this as an opportunity to get out before a David Adamany-type is hired. Of course, if Ed Rendell is hired between now and then, Matt stays because Rendell is a big football guy who would ease any rocky negotiations with City Council and “the community.” After the convention, Rendell will be looking for a job.

  9. I see KJ is being attacked on Pravda once again with someone telling him he has no idea of what he’s talking about. Yeah, if they hire an Adamany, football will be OK. KJ has more of a pulse on the sitty and any of the Stepfords over there. This is why I stopped commenting over there. Take any contrary opinion of what might happen adversely to the program, and you are jumped on like the Ruskies are when Putin is criticized. Pravda, indeed.

    • Totalitarian societies go blind from drinking their own bath water.., increasing hard to see reality….,

      Is it a good thing or bad thing when both President and Provost get fired? Bad

      Will opposing schools use this against us in the recruiting wars? Yes

      Does this put the stadium in jeopardy? Yes

      • approving a $400K traffic feasibility study does nothing to push the stadium forward. What if that study says, “you know what, 15th and 13th Streets and Broad are going to be so clogged up as to make any traffic unfeasible?” Project canned. Also, Pravda doesn’t seem to get how others will use this President situation against us in recruiting. Simple. Theo and Rhule were tight. Rhule has no freaking idea of who the next permanent President will be, so instead of listening to the next Missouri and saying no, he is more apt to listen and say yes. Getting out while the getting is good. P5 recruiters are taught how to lay facts like those on the table. Negative recruiting. Of course, if Rendell is brought in here and he hits it off with Matt, that problem is solved.

  10. I think it is interesting that Temple is favored by more points over Army than Penn State is favored over Kent State. Kent State went 3-9 last season (with one of the wins over Delaware State) and had 6 games where they scored 7 points or less, including 4 such games in the MAC (3 of which were shutouts).

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