Ramone Moore, a prized 6-4 guard from Southern High, will attend Temple University this year after all.

He just won't play basketball. And he won't be on scholarship. Still, if everything goes well in the classroom, he will play for the Owls starting in 2008-09 with four seasons of eligibility remaining.

Coach Fran Dunphy, entering his second season, confirmed Moore's intentions yesterday.

"I think he sat down and thought about his options and coming to Temple [right away] seemed to be the best choice for him to make," Dunphy said. "I don't know any more than that."

For the longest time, Moore appeared headed to a prep school this fall to get his academics in better shape, which is why he did not sign a letter of intent. That would have allowed him to be recruited by any program again, even though he verbally committed to Temple.

This way, he's already where he obviously wants to be. He just can't do anything basketball-related until he's officially part of the roster. He just has to pay for his first year of school, like any other student. He has applied for financial aid and will take summer classes to help get him ready.

A new NCAA rule governing how many core courses an athlete can pick up in any year of prep school might have had an impact on Moore's decision.

"If all goes well, which I think it will, it should work out well for him," Dunphy said. "He'll be able to do all the academic things our guys do."

Dunphy has four other freshmen coming in who will be able to play immediately: 6-9 forward Lavoy Allen, from Pennsbury High; 6-10 forward Michael Eric, from Church Farm School; 6-2 guard Martavis Kee, from Florida; and 6-8 forward Craig Williams, from the Virgin Islands. *