Quinton Flowers named AAC Offensive Player of the Week
In the wake of his 370-yard, five-TD effort against Connecticut, Bulls QB Quinton Flowers has been named American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Week.
Flowers, who ran for three TDs and passed for two in the 42-27 victory, now ranks second in the conference -- and 18th nationally -- in total offense (312.9 ypg). He has gained at least 224 yards and has accounted for at least one TD in every game this season.
"Not only did he run and throw a touchdown, he also was a lead blocker (on Marlon Mack's 34-yard scoring run)," Coach Willie Taggart said. "I mean, that's twice this year he had a nice block to help the runing back score. He's a winner."
And since conventional wisdom says you can't possibly watch Flowers' dodging, darting 54-yard TD run too many times, here's another look.
Additionally, MLB Auggie Sanchez, who had a career-best three sacks Saturday, was named to the AAC weekly honor roll.
HIGH PRAISE: Whereas many saw chaos on the Raymond James Stadium field following the Bulls' 44-23 win against Temple last year, Owls coach Matt Rhule saw class.
Speaking on the AAC weekly coaches teleconference Monday, Rhule made this observation about the aftermath of that game, in which the Bulls clinched bowl eligibility for the first time in five years.
"I hearken back to last year when they beat us and we were ranked, and I shook Coach Taggart's hand and the fans stormed the field and the (Bulls players) were all in the middle of them celebrating as they should," Rhule recalled.
"And as I was walking down to the tunnel, the thing that stuck out to me was, there was Marlon Mack, there was Quinton Flowers down there shaking our players' hands. That's when I knew, 'OK, these guys are for real.' In a moment when they could be down there celebrating, they were just being grown men and leaders and winners and champions, really."
OWL UPRISING? If nothing else, Temple (4-3, 2-1) should be oozing momentum when it hosts the Bulls (6-1, 3-0) Friday in a battle for sole possesssion of first place in the AAC East.
The Owls rallied from an 18-point deficit for a 26-25 win Saturday at UCF, clinching on QB Phillip Walker's 8-yard TD pass to Keith Kirkwood with a second remaining. The winning drive spanned four plays, 70 yards and 32 seconds, with Jefferson High alumnus Ventell Bryant catching the drive's first three passes for 62 yards.
"I thought Ventell came up huge obviously catching the first three balls; just big-time, big-time catches across the middle," Rhule said.
"And then we get the ball down to the 10-yard line and Ventell gets a little bit banged up and he really could've laid there and the game would've been over with that 10-second runoff. But (WR) Adonis Jennings runs over, picks him up and says, 'Get lined up.'
"I just think a lot of guys showed what they're capable of that moment."
ODDS AND ENDS: The Bulls now lead the conference -- and rank eighth nationally -- in both rushing offense (268.4 ypg) and scoring offense (44.1 ppg). ... On Monday's conference call, Taggart said he thinks Temple's defense is "a lot faster than they were last year." ... Taggart concurred the Bulls' four fumbles Saturday, including two by WR Rodney Adams, were the result of players holding the ball away from their bodies. USF lost two of those fumbles. "I thought both of those (lost) fumbles (by Adams and Mack), the guys were carrying the ball carelessly."