Staff Picks: ND vs, Temple

Irish Illustrated’s staff gives its predictions for Saturday night’s matchup between Notre Dame and Temple at The Linc in Philadelphia

With Tim Prister’s weekly game preview still to come, the rest of the Irish Illustrated staff offers a few thoughts on Saturday’s prime time matchup with the Temple Owls on Halloween.

Pete Sampson
Disrespect Temple at your own risk. Just don’t give the Owls too much credit either for staring 7-0 with escapes against UMass, UCF and East Carolina. This is a good team that happens to have a great record. What does that mean for Saturday night? That you shouldn't be surprised if Notre Dame blows Temple’s doors off. The Owls defense has enough material to slow down DeShone Kizer, but the Irish offense shouldn’t need to win this one.

The Temple offense is a one-man show without a top quarterback in support. Look for Temple to keep this close into halftime but for Notre Dame to run away with a comfortable win after the break, despite the Owls’ second-half identity.

Notre Dame 34 Temple 17
2015 Prediction Record: 7-0

Tim O’Malley
Unexpectedly ranked. Unexpectedly undefeated. Unexpected guests in the form of the ESPN College Game Day crew and an unexpected national television audience tuning in for three-plus hours of Temple Owls football on Halloween night. And for Notre Dame? Been there, done that.

It’s been quite a run for head coach Matt Rhule’s squad, but the Owls are being called to the main stage with a roster that remains replete with not-ready-for-prime time players. It won’t be easy throughout, but Notre Dame will never worry about the outcome, either.

Notre Dame 34 Temple 16
2015 Prediction Record: 5-2

Jack Freeman
Halloween night brings the Irish up against the Owls in a prime time match up. Temple has some impressive defensive stats but have they played anyone as good as the Irish? Temple is statistically good on the defensive side of the ball but their offense is shall we say unimpressive ranking 109 in total offense. It will be up to the Temple defense to win this game and get some turnovers to help out an offense that is bound to struggle at times. If the Irish play a mistake free game they should cruise to a victory.

Notre Dame 38 Temple 24
2015 Prediction Record: 5-2

Anna Hickey
You better believe Notre Dame has a real shot of making the playoffs, and everyone inside the Irish locker room knows it and wakes up thinking about it. That clear sense of purpose combined with fresh legs, developed depth and a team identity founded on well-defined individual roles that have taken shape through seven games will manifest itself in the Irish’s most complete performance to date this season. Temple has a stout front seven and 23 sacks on the year. But unfortunately for the Owls, Notre Dame’s pass protection is no joke. Notre Dame doesn’t just want to win on Saturday night, it wants to show on primetime why it’s a top four team.

Notre Dame 36 Temple 13
2015 Prediction Record: 6-1

Jake Brown
Don't get me wrong, Temple is a nice story. I just don't think they're a good enough team to play with Notre Dame as it looks to push toward a playoff spot over the next month. Starting with the offensive line, the Irish should be able to bully their way to a win on the ground. And that doesn't even factor in a defense that will be the most talented Temple has seen this season. Irish win big.

Notre Dame 38 Temple 10
2015 Prediction Record: 7-0

Steve Hare
Two years ago, Temple was 2-10 and now the Owls are 7-0, ranked in the Top 25 and perched atop the American Football Conference. But, let's not get too excited about what the Owls have accomplished. Their signature win came in Week 1 at Penn State. The Nittany Lions are 6-2 and still in search of a quality win. Notre Dame has been tested and the Irish have proven they belong ranked among the nation's best and it should show on Saturday.

Notre Dame 38 Temple 17
2015 Prediction Record: 6-1 Top Stories