AAC: Temple trips up Maryland, Montgomery
By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector
Tuesday, September 17, 2019
Former East Carolina football head coach Scottie Montgomery, who was fired by ECU last December and is offensive coordinator at Maryland, played a big role in the Terrapins' 2-0 start to the season and No. 21 national ranking.
That included scoring 142 total points during the first two weeks.
But in a game at American Athletic Conference member Temple, it was the Owls who recorded a low-scoring win, 20-17, over first-year Maryland head coach Michael Locksley, Montgomery and the Terrapins from the Big Ten.
Rod Carey, who is 2-0 so far in his first season at Temple, said Monday during the AAC coaches teleconference that he didn't think Montgomery's connection to the league had an impact on Saturday’s game. He said the Owls looked more at the history and tendencies by Locksley, a former offensive coordinator at Alabama.
"I didn't study what he did at ECU for the game, but we spent a lot of time obviously studying coach Locksley and what he did at Alabama," Carey said. "There could be similarities from what he did at ECU, but we did not look at that."
Temple beat ECU 49-6 last year and 34-10 in 2017.
The Owls' home win over Maryland included two goal-line stands during the final five minutes. It was part of the American posting a 7-2 record in nonconference action during Week 3.
"We are on to Buffalo, but it was a great win and I thought our guys executed really through a lot of adversity in that game," Carey said. "There were multiple points that were critical points in the game, and our execution came through in the end. It was from defense and even our offense going on a go-ahead drive and end-game scenarios.”
More on Perry
The AAC offensive player of the week honor was split between UCF quarterback Dillon Gabriel, a freshman who passed for 347 yards and four touchdowns in a 45-27 win over Stanford, and Navy quarterback Malcolm Perry for his big day against East Carolina.
Perry accounted for six total touchdowns for the first time in his career. The senior is plenty explosive as a runner, which he showed off with 156 rushing yards and four touchdowns, but he also was 5-of-7 passing for 151 yards and two touchdowns.
He missed an open receiver on both of his incompletions.
“He would have loved to have completed those passes, but I thought he was just on point in running our offense,” Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo said. “He got us in the plays we want and getting the ball where he needs to get it and being smart with the football and not turning it over.”
In triple digits
Four American teams have scored more than 100 points this year, led by 15th-ranked UCF with 155 and 41 allowed.
Next is SMU, which is 3-0 for the first time since 1984 thanks to averaging 44.3 points per game. Memphis, the preseason favorite in the AAC West division, opened with a 15-10 win over Ole Miss and then beat Southern 55-24 and South Alabama 42-6.
Memphis (3-0) and Navy (2-0, 1-0) are both off before playing against each other for a Thursday night game next week on ESPN at Memphis.
“We opened against a Southeastern Conference opponent, and that was a great challenge for us, but even though we didn’t necessarily play the cleanest game in all phases, we battled,” Memphis coach Mike Norvell said. “We found a way to finish. ... Last week going on the road (to South Alabama), it was probably our most complete game.”
Contact Ronnie Woodward at firstname.lastname@example.org, 252-329-9592 and follow @RonnieW11 on Twitter.