5 Ways Cincinnati Football Will Try To Beat Temple

By Mike Gibson

5 Ways Cincinnati Will Try to Beat Temple

Tommy Tuberville, Cincinnati,
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Being a great game day head football coach in today’s college game is like being a grandmaster in chess. If the talent is relatively equal, games are often determined by one coach identifying another’s “process” and defeating it. Right now, Cincinnati coach Tommy Tuberville is one of the best at that, so Temple coach Matt Rhule should anticipate these five moves and counter them.

5. Blitz An Empty Backfield

P.J. Walker, Temple,
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5. Blitz An Empty Backfield

P.J. Walker, Temple,
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When the Owls do the dog stare huddle, look to the sideline into an empty backfield, they might as well be holding up the “Please Rush Us” sign. Blitzing against an empty backfield is an automatic call against Temple and has been a successful one all season, and the only people who seemingly don’t know it are the Temple coaches, whose empty backfields usually attract unwanted company.

4. Using Temple as a Temple Spy

Nick Temple, Cincinnati,
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4. Using Temple as a Temple Spy

Nick Temple, Cincinnati,
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One of the best linebackers in the AAC is Cincinnati’s Nick Temple, and fans can expect Tuberville to move him all over the field. At 5-foot-10 and 218 pounds, Temple doesn’t have the prototypical size of a linebacker, but has the speed of a safety. Because of that, he will be used to spy Owls quarterback P.J. Walker. That matchup in the open field could determine the game.

3. Defend the Pass

P.J. Walker, Dion Dawkins, Temple,
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3. Defend the Pass

P.J. Walker, Dion Dawkins, Temple,
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Since Temple never attempts to establish the run first, expect Tuberville to sell out for the pass, especially when the Owls go into their favorite three- and four-wide receiver looks. Cincinnati’s defensive backs play very tight in coverage and are coached to accept an interference penalty over allowing a receiver an easy catch. The Owls struggle to get separation against virtually every team, so easy catch opportunities are rarely present.

2. No Hang Time

John Christopher, possession receiver, Temple,
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2. No Hang Time

John Christopher, possession receiver, Temple,
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Most teams like to angle kick against a dangerous returner, hoping it rolls out of bounds. Since Temple has given up on using the punt as an offensive play, Tuberville will instruct his punter just kick it as straight and as far as he can and not worry about hang time, thereby holding a big edge in field position all day.

1. Sideline Patterns for Gunner Kiel

Gunner Kiel, Cincinnati,
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1. Sideline Patterns for Gunner Kiel

Gunner Kiel, Cincinnati,
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Tuberville’s quarterback, Gunner Kiel, is a Notre Dame transfer who has spent all season verifying his five-star rating coming out of high school. Temple has a tendency to give a cushion on out patterns, and how Kiel executes those kind of routes could determine if the Bearcats can mount enough scoring drives to keep pace with Temple’s struggling offense.

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