PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Rutgers (8-12, 2-5) returns to rugged road of the American Athletic Conference to meet Temple (5-13, 0-7) in a 7 p.m. tip-off on Wednesday (Jan. 29). It is approximately a 70-mile drive from the RAC to the 10,206-seat Liacouras Center on North Broad Street in Philadelphia. The Scarlet Knights will be seeking a return to the win column and their initial road victory of the season. The Owls will be working to earn their first league victory after seven straight defeats to begin the conference campaign.
The game will be televised live nationally on ESPNU with Mike Crispino calling the action and Bruce Pearl providing the analysis. On the radio, the contest will be broadcast live on the Rutgers IMG Sports Network, WOR 710 AM in New York and WCTC 1450 AM in New Brunswick. Chris Carlin will serve as play-by-play announcer and Dick Lloyd will provide commentary. On satellite radio, the game will be on Sirius 134 and XM 193. WRSU (88.7 FM) will also broadcast the game.
Wednesday evening’s contest marks the 52nd meeting between the schools dating back to 1920, with Temple holding a 32-19 advantage in victories. The Scarlet Knights are 2-1 at the Liacouras Center and handed TU its first loss at the arena in a 72-63 decision on Dec. 20, 1997. The last meeting at the venue resulted in a 77-54 Temple victory on Nov. 29, 2006. The Scarlet Knights defeated the Owls in their first match-up this season, 71-66, at the RAC on New Year’s Day. Junior forward Kadeem Jack (Queens, N.Y.) shot 8-of-12 to score 18 points, including 14 in the second half, as Rutgers out-scored TU 34-26 in the paint in a contest that featured nine ties and 20 lead changes. RU scored the game’s final six points and limited Temple to 33.3 percent (24-of-72) shooting.
As a player at Rutgers, current head coach Eddie Jordan had a 2-1 record versus the Owls. Jordan and teammate Mike Dabney both had six steals in a 96-62 victory over Temple at the Palestra during the 1975-76 Final Four season.
Jack had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds, but it was not enough as Rutgers dropped an 82-71 decision to Connecticut this past Saturday night before a sold-out RAC. He shot 4-of-9 from the floor, made 11-of-14 free throws, and issued four blocks. Jack was joined in double figures by junior guard Jerome Seagears (Silver Springs, Md.) and freshman forward Junior Etou (Republic of Congo). Seagears contributed 17 points and six assists off the bench, while Etou pitched in 10 points. The Scarlet Knights were out-scored 34-12 in the paint.
Temple, under the leadership of eighth-year head coach Fran Dunphy, came all the way back from a 19-point deficit against No. 15/16 Cincinnati, but could not pull ahead and lost 80-76 at home on Sunday afternoon. Senior guard Dalton Pepper finished with a career-high 33 points, including a career-best eight three-pointers, and scored 27 points in the second half. He averages 17.9 points-per-game, which ranks third in the AAC. The Owls have four players ranked among the league’s top scorers, including Will Cummings (sixth, 16.3), Quenton DeCosey (eighth, 15.7) and Anthony Lee (11th, 14.1).