Temple has proven it can beat a nationally ranked football team. Make that ranked teams.
The Owls beat Maryland, 20-17, when the Terrapins were No. 21. Saturday, Temple defeated then-No. 23 Memphis.
Both wins came at home. Now comes the hard part: beating a nationally ranked opponent on the road.
Temple, which itself is ranked No. 25 in the USA Today Coaches Poll, will play at SMU at 3:30 p.m. Saturday (ESPN2). The Mustangs are ranked No. 19 in both the Coaches and Associated Press polls.
SMU is coming off a bye, which happened at a good time: after a 43-37 triple-overtime win over Tulsa in which the Mustangs erased a 30-9 deficit entering the fourth quarter.
Temple must stop a high-powered offense averaging 44.2 points. The fewest points the Mustangs have scored have been 37. Temple has topped 37 just once, and that was in a 56-12 rout of a Football Championship Subdivision school, Bucknell.
So everything on paper appears to be against Temple, but the Owls have been winning without playing their absolute best. What happens if they put it all together?
Having the experience of playing and beating two nationally ranked teams has to mean something, doesn’t it? In this game, it should.