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College Football: Temple looks to surpass 2.5 win total as it opens season with Duke

Temple football is in transition, and its odds reflect that

CINCINNATI, OHIO - OCTOBER 08: Edward Saydee #23 of the Temple Owls runs with the ball while being tackled by Darrian Beavers #0 and Bryan Cook #6 of the Cincinnati Bearcats in the second quarter at Nippert Stadium on October 08, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - OCTOBER 08: Edward Saydee #23 of the Temple Owls runs with the ball while being tackled by Darrian Beavers #0 and Bryan Cook #6 of the Cincinnati Bearcats in the second quarter at Nippert Stadium on October 08, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)Read moreDylan Buell / Getty Images

Three seasons removed from an eight-win season that included upset wins over nationally-ranked Maryland and Memphis, the Temple Owls football program will look a little different season after moving on from Rod Carey.

Now, enter new head coach Stan Drayton, who has coached the running back position for the majority of his career at both the college and NFL levels. His most recent stint was at Texas, where he was the associate head coach and running backs coach for the Longhorns from 2016 to 2021.

The Owls have only mustered four wins over their last two seasons, finishing with a 3-9 record in 2021, losing seven straight games by an average of nearly 36 points per game.

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The 2022 season will breath fresh air for the program, despite the low expectations among bettors and bookies set for the Owls. It starts with their week one season opener against the Duke Blue Devils, with Temple as a touchdown underdog at several major sportsbooks. The most favorable odds lie at FanDuel, where the Owls are 6.5-point underdogs when they travel to Durham to take on the Blue Devils Friday night.

The Blue Devils themselves also went 3-9 in 2021, and after winning three games in a row over Northwestern, North Carolina A&T and Kansas, would lose their final eight games to end the season. They, too, will have something to prove Friday night.

The schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Owls, either, as they’ll face an improving Rutgers program in two weeks, but after they take on Duke this week, two of the next three games will be winnable games against Lafayette and UMass; however, conference play begins in early October, and it could be tough sledding in what could be one of the more loaded conferences in terms of talent.

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The Owls not only enter the season as underdogs against Duke, but have a lowly win total set for their 2022 season as well.

Caesars, FanDuel and BetMGM all have Temple’s over-under on win total set at 2.5, but the over has the most juice at FanDuel, set at -165. Despite the low win-total in Drayton’s first season at the helm, it’s clear bettors are backing Temple to at least squeak out 3 wins this season, which would match their total from 2021.

The Owls haven’t won the American Athletic Conference since the 2016 season, under now Georgia Tech head coach Geoff Collins, and oddsmakers don’t see that changing in 2022. Most books have Temple with odds as high as 250-1 to win the conference at BetMGM, while FanDuel again has some of the lowest odds for the Owls futures, setting their price to win the conference at 100-1.

Improving the program and taking a step towards playing winning football will be a priority for Coach Drayton’s regime, and a good showing against one of the ACC’s bottom dwellers could project the Philadelphia program to new heights in 2022 and beyond.

Temple vs. Duke betting line (odds via FanDuel)

Moneyline: Temple (+235) at Duke (-295)

Point Spread: Duke -6.5 (-122)

Over/Under: 51.5 (-110/-110)

History: Second ever meeting between these two programs, Duke won lone matchup in 2018, 56-27 at the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, Louisiana. According to Odds Shark, Temple entered that game as 3.5-point favorites.

Duke 2021 ATS: 4-8-0

Temple 2021 ATS: 2-10-0

The Inquirer is not an online gambling operator, or a gambling site. We provide this information about sports betting for entertainment purposes only.