Anthony Russo is Temple’s starting quarterback, but whether the redshirt junior will be leading the Owls in their opener Aug. 31 against Bucknell at Lincoln Financial Field remains a question.

Russo, who became the starter in the third game of last season, injured his right calf in practice on Aug. 12 and has been sidelined since.

On Friday, Russo was dressed for practice, but he watched redshirt sophomore Todd Centeio guide the first-team offense, while redshirt freshman Trad Beatty ran the second team.

“He is not ready to go through a full practice yet, which obviously you have to go through a full practice to play, but he is a lot further along than I think anybody thought he would be at this point,” coach Rod Carey said after practice.

“… I am very optimistic that through the weekend and Monday when we hit the practice field, he will be back going through a whole practice.”

Carey couldn’t say for sure that Russo would be ready for the opener.

“He could come out Monday and not be able to go through a whole practice and Tuesday not be able to go through a whole one and then we have to make some decisions about what we are doing,” Carey said. “We have been prepping for Toddy, allowing [Russo] to heal.”

When Russo is healthy, he will be the quarterback, Carey said.

“You don’t lose your job over an injury and that is how it has always been, so he will get back in there and we will go forward from there,” Carey said.

Carey was asked at what point of next week would Russo have to be ready to be able to go on Aug. 31.

“That is probably somewhere in that Tuesday-Wednesday window, and we will kind of figure that out and take into account the reps he has done up to that point, too,” Carey said. "So somewhere in that window we will know a lot more.”

Temple should be a decided favorite over Bucknell, a Football Championship Subdivision school that is coming off a 1-10 season. The Owls will then have a bye the next week before hosting Maryland on Sept. 14.

Notes

Temple will release its first depth chart Monday. … Carey said that a starting running back hasn’t been chosen, but that graduate student Jager Gardner, redshirt freshman Kyle Dobbins, and true freshman Re’Mahn Davis will all see action, in addition to receiver Isaiah Wright, who will at times line up in the backfield. … Redshirt sophomore Christian Braswell, challenging for time at cornerback, is sidelined. “Bras was having a heck of a camp, so I am hopeful he can get on the field a little more next week as we go,” Carey said.