Well, the Big East has rolled out the red carpet for Temple.
The Owls pulled the come-from-behind overtime win over Connecticut 17-14 on the road Saturday afternoon. Temple posted 17 unanswered points for the victory. This marks the first time in school history Temple (3-2, 2-0) has won back-to-back Big East games. Temple pulled another stunner last week, beating USF in its first Big East game since 2004.
At the beginning of the game, there were not many indications this would go Temple's way. UConn (3-4, 0-2) jumped out to a quick 14-0 first-quarter lead as quarterback Chandler Whitmer picked apart the Temple defense. In fact, he had 159 yards passing in the first quarter alone. Temple, meanwhile, could not get anything going against the No. 1 run defense in the Big East.
It looked as if the Huskies would have no trouble.
But Temple started chipping away once it got its running game going midway through the second quarter. Montel Harris got the Owls on the board late in the quarter, running for 62 of Temple's 80 yards on the scoring drive. UConn could not get going on offense, and the offensive line in particular did this group no favors. The Huskies also played without leading rusher Lyle McCombs, though replacement Max DeLorenzo held his own with 90 yards rushing.
UConn blew several opportunities to build on its lead. Kicker Chad Christen missed three field goals in regulation. Temple, meanwhile, came up short on several opportunities of its own, fumbling at the UConn 25 just before halftime. Then later in the fourth quarter, with opportunities to kick field goals, coach Steve Addazio went for it on fourth down but came up short.
Temple got one final chance with 2:56 remaining. The Owls were able to convert twice on fourth down, and then Chris Coyer made two incredible throws -- the first a 33-yarder to Deon Miller on third-and-13, and then the last to Jalen Fitzpatrick for a 14-yard touchdown with 19 seconds remaining. That sent the game into overtime.
Once again, UConn could not move the ball and sent out Christen. He missed his fourth field goal of the day, this one a 28-yarder. Temple kicker Brandon McManus made his 29-yarder when he got his chance, and the Owls came out with the victory. Harris ended up with his second straight 100-yard game, carrying the ball 30 times for 142 yards with a touchdown. He got the majority of the carries with Matt Brown on the sideline because of a sprained ankle.
As Steve Addazio celebrates the win over his former mentor, questions about whether UConn coach Paul Pasqualoni is on the hot seat are only growing stronger. UConn has a defense that can keep the Huskies in games, but it has been futile on offense. UConn has now lost to Temple and Western Michigan this season, raising serious questions about whether UConn is headed in the right direction.