New Era, Same Result

P.J. Walker's debut as Temple's starting quarterback provided a glimpse at the future but ultimately reiterated the frustration of the present. Walker, a true freshman, went 12-of-22 for 200 yards with two touchdowns and one interception — albeit a costly one — and a fumble as the Owls fell to 0-6 overall and 0-3 in the American Athletic Conference with a 38-20 loss at Cincinnati.

P.J. Walker's debut as Temple's starting quarterback provided a glimpse at the future but ultimately reiterated the frustration of the present.

Walker, a true freshman, went 12-of-22 for 200 yards with two touchdowns and one interception — albeit a costly one — and a fumble as the Owls fell to 0-6 overall and 0-3 in the American Athletic Conference with a 38-20 loss at Cincinnati (4-2, 1-2) on Friday night.

Behind Walker, the Owls actually held a second-quarter lead over the heavily favored Bearcats as Walker hit Jalen Fitzpatrick with a 35-yard scoring strike and Zaire Williams ran the ball in from a yard out for a 13-7 advantage.

But Cincinnati quarterback Brendon Kay connected with Anthony McClung for a 25-yard scoring strike a minute into the second quarter to take a 14-13 lead and pushed it to 21-13 after Walker was intercepted with his back to his own end zone.

With the Owls starting at their own 1, Walker was picked at the 32 by Zach Edwards, who returned the interception to the 12. Kay turned the turnover into points when he ran it in from four yards out.

But Walker bounced right back, breaking off a 31-yard run to the 50 and hitting former quarterback Juice Granger for a 30-yard touchdown pass that made it a 21-20 game.

As has been the case much of the season though, the defense couldn't hold off the opposition. Converting a third down and a fourth down, Cincinnati marched 71 yards in 14 plays and Tion Green scored from a yard out to take a 28-20 lead into the half. The Owls were shut out in the second half as Cincinnati pulled away.

Kenny Harper ran for 72 yards on just 10 carries and Walker finished second on the team with 47 rushing yards. Williams was the leading receiver with three catches for 51 yards.

Tyler Matakevich posted 15 tackles, including 11 solo stops.

Temple returns to Lincoln Financial Field for its Homecoming Game against Army next Saturday with another chance to secure its first win of the season.

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