PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Weeks away from its return to Big East action, Temple played like the team that got kicked out early last decade.
Perry Hills threw two touchdowns and ran for one in his second start to help Maryland hold on and beat Temple 36-27 on Saturday.
Embarrassed by the Owls in a 31-point loss last season, the Terrapins (2-0) nearly blew a 23-point lead at halftime. Hills had all three of his scores in the half to help Maryland race to a 26-3 lead. The Owls rallied in the second half but ran out of time and big plays.
"We created our adversity today," coach Steve Addazio said. "We are going to be in all kinds of games that are going to be ebb and flow momentum shift games all year long. You got to learn how to handle it. As ugly as that first half was, we're right back in the game in the third period. That's football. You have to learn how to handle that kind of football. It's going to happen every Saturday."
Maryland played nothing like the team that squeaked out a 7-6 win last week against Football Championship Subdivision team William & Mary. The Terrapins' 12 first downs in the first half were one less than they had all of last week. They outgained the Owls by 145 total yards in the first half.
The Owls (1-1) were sloppy and out of sync in a game where they were 10-point favorites.
C.J. Hammond had a 62-yard TD catch for the Owls.
Maryland and Temple combined for nine fumbles — six of them lost.
The Owls crushed Maryland last year because Bernard Pierce set a school record with five rushing touchdowns. Pierce has moved on to the NFL and, without him, Temple couldn't gain any momentum on the ground.
"We didn't come out with a power game mindset," Addazio said. "Establish the run and then work off of that. We came out wanting to utilize more weapons and then we put the ball on the ground."
The Terrapins tried to give away the game late in the fourth quarter.
Trailing 29-20, the Owls recovered a fumbled punt at Maryland's 12 yard line, and were in prime position to inch closer toward a fantastic comeback.
But Brandon McManus had a field-goal attempt blocked and Maryland recovered at midfield.