Tulane falls to Temple 49-10


Head coach Curtis Johnson announced the hiring of Carter Sheridan to serve as the new wide receivers coach and the promotion of Jason Rollins to co-defensive coordinator Tuesday. 

Mackenna Barker, Online Sports Editor

Tulane’s road woes continued Saturday as the Wave (2-3, 1-1 American Athletic Conference) found itself unable to stop the win streak of the undefeated Temple (5-0, 2-0 AAC), falling to the Owls 49-10 Friday in Philadelphia.

The game started on a note of false hope as freshman safety Roderic Teamer, in his first career start, forced a turnover for the Wave on the first drive of the game. Tulane benefited with a field goal, taking an early lead in the game. Sophomore kicker Andrew DiRocco, who went 8-15 on field goals last year, is 3-3 so far this season.

Early in the second quarter, the Wave held onto a 10-7 lead as redshirt sophomore quarterback Tanner Lee found redshirt junior receiver Devon Breaux deep in the end zone on a seven-yard touchdown pass that was set up by Temple’s special teams botching a punt return that allowed Tulane to take possession deep in Temple territory.

Temple promptly answered with a 90-yard touchdown and it was the Owls’ game from there. Temple proceeded to outscore Tulane 42-0 in the remaining three stanzas while holding the Wave to just 113 yards of offense compared to Temple’s 372.

The Wave’s offense struggled in every position. Tulane only mustered 11 yards on the ground and the offensive line could not contain Temple’s defense, allowing for three sacks. Feeling the pressure in the pocket, Lee threw two interceptions that led to two Temple touchdowns. Lee finished 12-20 for 87 yards. With the lack of any rushing game as well as constant pressure on Lee, the offense found no footing or momentum to last.

“They really hit our guy today,” Johnson said. “[Senior tackle Matt Ioannidis] just wreaked havoc and those ends came off the corner. … We know if we couldn’t neutralize their defensive line we’d be in for a long day.”

Tulane’s defense performed powerfully in spurts. Tulane forced six fumbles, but only managed to recover the ball for the Wave twice. The defense posted some big stops, halting the Owls’ momentum briefly, but as the offense could find no ground, the momentum never shifted back into the Wave’s favor. The defense began to wear out the longer it stayed on the field and the Wave started allowing too many large gains.

Penalties further plagued any chance of progress for the Wave, notching eight penalties for 87 yards. One penalty called on the Wave proved very controversial, as redshirt sophomore running back Sherman Badie picked up a personal foul for unnecessary roughness as he ran out of bounds on a carry. Johnson admitted he didn’t understand the call after the game, but proper call or not, the Wave felt the weight of those errors.

“We can play a lot better than the way we played,” senior defensive back Darion Monroe said. “That’s not a good representation of what we can do for the rest of the schedule.”

The Wave will need to find some composure as they head into the upcoming weeks. Tulane faces off against three of the top teams in the American Athletic Conference, including two more teams (Houston, Memphis) that also boast of undefeated records so far.

The Wave returns to home next week as they take on Houston at 8 p.m. on Oct. 16 in Yulman Stadium.

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