Owls finish second-last in preseason poll

Temple football participated today in The American Athletic Conference Summer Kickoff media day event in Newport, R.I.

The Owls were ranked ninth out of the 10 conference teams on the preseason media poll, ahead of only Memphis. Louisville is the overwhelming favorite, according to the poll, having received 28 first place votes.

Interviews were streamed to The American’s website, when each head coach took the podium to take questions from the press. First-year Temple head coach Matt Rhule was asked about his transition into The American.

“I think it’s unique for me even as a head coach, usually even as you come into a league, even if it’s your first year as a head coach, you can go back and watch some film and see this things, see the people you’re going to play, how your players stack up,” Rhule said.

“I think one of the things that I haven’t heard a lot of people talk about about this league is all the different, unique styles of offense we’re going to see,” Rhule added.

He then went on to break down some of the competition the Owls will face this season, in addition to discussing the quarterback position.

Rhule was the only coach at the event to not have been asked more than one question from the media.

The Temple News was not in attendance at the event. The full transcript of Rhule’s interview can be found here: http://www.theamerican.org/documents/2013/7/30/Temple_-_7_30_13.pdf.

Morgan ruled ineligible to play for Temple

Jesse Morgan, the former Massachusetts guard, was denied eligibility to play for Temple in the 2013-14 season, making it unlikely that Morgan will ever suit up for the Owls.

The news was first reported by Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette.

There are a few possible reasons Morgan’s appeal was denied. He did not take classes in the spring 2013 semester because UMass denied him the ability to do so for disciplinary reasons. NCAA rules require that to be eligible, a student-athlete must make continual academic progress. Another possible reason is that Morgan has already used four years of eligibility, and this year (which he would have had to sit out) would have counted as his fifth, rendering him unable to play.

The Olney High graduate tore his ACL in January and was later expelled from UMass for disciplinary reasons, which is why he did not take classes in the spring. He was averaging 13.4 points per game in 14 games before the injury.

Morgan meeting with NCAA Monday

Former Massachusetts guard and current Temple student Jesse Morgan will meet with the NCAA on Monday to determine his eligibility for the 2013-14 season.

This story was first reported by Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. Morgan, a native Philadelphian who attended Olney High School, tore his ACL in January and was later expelled from UMass for disciplinary reasons.

Morgan has just one year of eligibility left, and the meeting will potentially decide if he can use it at all, and if so, whether he can use it for the 2013-14 season. He is enrolled at Temple as a continuing studies student.

He was in the midst of his best collegiate season last year before the injury, averaging 13.4 points per game in 14 games.

Farrell set to join Owls

According to coach Seamus O’Connor, Old Dominion sophomore midfielder Kelly Farrell has recently decided to transfer to Temple.

“We just picked up a big transfer, Kelly Farrell, from Old Dominion,” O’Connor said, “[Kelly] is a very good attacker. Very good attacker. She’s been a late pick up and I think she is going to help with some of the freshmen that are coming in”.

During her freshman campaign with the Monarchs, Farrell earned playing time in 16 regular season matches, being featured in the starting lineup in 10 matches. Farrell recorded two assists in 2012.

O’Connor, who served as the Owls’ recruiting coordinator during the last two seasons, stated that Farrell was a player that Temple targeted during her high school career, before she committed to Old Dominion.

Farrell was a four year starter at Timber Creek high school, in New Jersey, earning honors such as First-Team All State, All-South Jersey, and a South Jersey Championship berth. Farrell was also part of the 2011 Highland Wildcats club that reached the Jefferson Cup Showcase Elite Championship.

Farrell’s former Highland Wildcat teammate midfielder Jillian DiBlasi will also join the Owls this season as part of the 2013 freshman recruiting class.

Farrell is the second player to transfer to Temple in 2013, following sophomore defender Taylor Trusky, who transferred from Pittsburgh in the spring.

Cross country schedule released

The men’s and women’s cross country 2013 schedule was released Tuesday with approximately five weeks until the season kicks off in Bethlehem, Pa. on Aug. 31 at the Lehigh Invitational.

The Paul Short Invitational on Oct. 5 will mark the second trip to Lehigh in five weeks, while some runners may potentially take a third trip up the Northeast Extension Nov. 15 to partake in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship at host-school Lehigh, pending individual qualification.

The University of Connecticut will host the inaugural American Athletic Conference Championship on Nov. 5.

8/31/2013 Lehigh Invitational Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pa.)   Details
9/13/2013 Friend Big 5 Invitational (Hosted by Temple University) Belmont Plateau (Philadelphia, Pa.)   Details
10/5/2013 Paul Short Invitational Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pa.)   Details
10/19/2013 Leopard Invitational Lafayette College (Easton, Pa.)   Details
11/2/2013 American Athletic Conference Championship University of Connecticut (Storrs, Conn.)   Details
11/15/2013 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pa.)   Details
11/23/2013 IC4A Championship Van Courtland Park (Bronx, N.Y.)   Details
11/23/2013 NCAA Championship Indiana State University (Terre Haute, Ind.)   Details

Cross country hires new coach

Temple cross country will once again introduce a new face in charge of leading the team as it gets set for a new season.

Track & field coach Eric Mobley announced Wednesday that Philadelphia-area native James Snyder is the program’s latest hire, taking the position of assistant cross country and track & field coach.

Although he will not be given the title of cross country head coach yet, Snyder will handle the day-to-day coaching responsibilities for the men’s and women’s cross country teams, as well as the distance teams come track & field season, per a Temple Athletic Communications press release.

Snyder was a multiple letter winner for George Mason’s cross country and track & field teams, and is a magna cum laude graduate in exercise science. He earned his master’s degree in exercise science from Appalachian State University while also serving as a graduate assistant with the school’s cross country and track & field programs for two years.

The Downingtown, Pa. native is coming off a season working for Florida State University’s cross country and track & field program as the operations assistant, handling various administrative duties such as planning team travel, managing equipment budgets and coordinating on-campus recruiting.

Snyder is currently a USA Track & Field level I and II endurance coach and was selected to participate in the first Coaches Mentorship Program held during the 2012 Olympic Track & Field Trials.

The press release also mentioned some of Snyder’s recent pursuits in researching sport science and distance runner performance. It said that Snyder has presented his findings before the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength & Conditioning Association and has circulated his findings in various publications.

Snyder will be the third Temple coach to handle the cross country coaching duties in three seasons despite being the first to not hold the official title as cross country head coach.

A 2013 schedule release for cross country is still pending.

An updated version of this story can be found here.

Charleston Classic bracket released

Temple’s first round opponent in the 2013 Charleston Classic will be Clemson.

The tournament bracket was first released by ESPN and confirmed by Temple’s athletic department. Along with seven other schools, the Owls will travel to Charleston, S.C. to play in a double elimination tournament from Nov. 21 to 24.

Temple will have played three regular season games before the tournament. No other American teams will be in it, but Massachusetts, a former Atlantic 10 rival, will be. Temple and UMass will not square off until the final day of the tournament, if at all.

The winner of the Temple-Clemson game will play the winner of the Georgia-Davidson game in the semifinals, while the losers of those games will compete in the consolation bracket against each other. The other half of the first round pits UMass against Nebraska, and UAB versus New Mexico.

ESPN will broadcast all games on various networks.

Men’s basketball to travel to Europe in August

For the first time in the program’s history, the men’s basketball team is going on a European tour.

The team will leave on Aug. 14, visiting four cities along the way: two in France (Paris and Nice) and two in Italy (Milan and Rome). The Owls will play four games on the trip (the press release didn’t specify where the games would be played, but there will likely be one in each city) and return on Aug. 23.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” coach Fran Dunphy said in the release. “Academically, we plan to educate our student-athletes on the different cultures as well as the history of the cities we are visiting. Basketball-wise, it will give our young squad a chance to form its own chemistry before we begin our first season of competition in the American Athletic Conference. So it is a win-win scenario.”

The trip also allows Temple to get additional practice hours. Normally, teams can only practice for two hours a week in the offseason due to NCAA rules. However, since the Owls will be competing overseas, the team will be granted 10 additional full practices before the trip.

Field hockey names assistant coach

Kelly Driscoll has become the full-time assistant coach for the field hockey team after serving as a graduate assistant for the past two seasons.

Driscoll will take over for former assistant coach Charise Young, who joined the coaching staff the same time as Driscoll did in 2011.

“Kelly has done a wonderful job over the last two years as our graduate assistant coach,” nine-year head coach Amanda Janney said in a press release. “I am so pleased to have the opportunity to promote her to our full-time first assistant. She is currently playing with the indoor national team and she sets a great example for our players with her love of the game and her desire to continue playing at the highest level.”

Young, who graduated from Temple in 2010 and was named Temple’s Female Student Athlete of the Year as a senior midfielder, is leaving her position to pursue a career in teaching.

Janney is thankful for the effort Young has put in as both a player and a coach.

“Charise really helped get our program moving in the right direction and dedicated herself to making our team better both during her time as a coach and a player,” Janney said. “She is now moving on to pursue her career in teaching, and we know her students will enjoy her mentorship as much as our players did.”

Prior to joining the Owls’ coaching staff, Driscoll was a student at Old Dominion University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and sociology in 2009, and a master’s in  applied sociology in 2011.

Driscoll was a goalkeeper for Old Dominion’s field hockey program and was selected to the All-CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) First Team twice.

Driscoll was also a member of the USA National Development team in 2011 and will be part of the national indoor team for the 2014 Pan American Indoor Cup.

“I am very excited to stay on the coaching staff here at Temple,” Driscoll said in the press release. “We have a great field hockey program and I’m very happy to continue to be a part of it as we move into the BIG EAST Conference this season.”

Women’s basketball schedule released

The schedule for the upcoming women’s basketball season was released last week, and from the looks of it, the Owls will have their work cut out for them.

In the team’s first campaign in the American Athletic Conference, Temple will play 12 of 29 games against NCAA tournament teams from last season, including defending national champion Connecticut and runner-up Louisville.

“Obviously, this is our most challenging schedule in the history of the program and this is what you want—to play against the best and get this kind of exposure for Temple women’s basketball,” sixth-year head coach Tonya Cardoza said in a press release. “We are so excited to get started and to see what this season will bring. This schedule gives us the opportunity to bring in some terrific competition and to put people in the stands.

The conference portion of the schedule includes home-and-away matchups against Cincinnati, Central Florida, Connecticut, Houston, Louisville, Memphis, Rutgers, Southern Methodist and South Florida. The non-conference schedule includes six games against NCAA tournament teams.

The season is set to kick off on Nov. 8 against city rival La Salle.