American (20-13, 13-5 PL in 2013-14) at Temple (9-22, 4-14 AAC in 2013-14)
Date and Location:
Fri., Nov. 14, 2014, 7:30 p.m. – Liacouras Center – Philadelphia, Pa.
25th meeting - AU trails, 20-4
ESPN3 – Dave Leno (play-by-play), Craig Robinson (analyst)
Federal News Radio Online - Dan Laing (play-by-play), Mike Gambardella (analyst)
WASHINGTON - The American University men's basketball team returns to the hardwood for the first time since capturing its third Patriot League Championship title and advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Eagles begin their season as part of the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic regional round, hosted by Temple. AU and the Owls tip off at 7:30 p.m., live on ESPN3.
Reigning conference Coach of the Year Mike Brennan returns for his second season at the helm of the Eagles after leading AU to a 10-win turnaround in year one. Brennan will count on an experienced backcourt led by Preseason All-Patriot League Team selection Pee Wee Gardner, who earned conference tournament MVP honors and second team all-league accolades. He is joined by All-Patriot League swingmen John Schoof and Jesse Reed.
Brennan and the Eagles will once again rely on a balanced offense that ranked seventh in the nation last season field goal percentage, as well as a strong defensive unit that ranked seventh in the country in points allowed per game.
American and Temple meet for the first time in 32 years on Friday night in the Liacouras Center. The Owls own a 20-4 series advantage and a 9-0 lead in games played in Philadelphia.
Fans can catch on the action live on ESPN3 with Dave Leno and Craig Robinson on the call. Eagles faithful can listen to the Federal News Radio broadcast via AUeagles.com with Dan Laing and Mike Gambardella.
Next up, American opens its home slate and raises its 2014 Patriot League Championship banner on Monday against Saint Francis (Pa.).
SCOUTING THE OWLS
The Owls, who reached the NCAA Tournament in six of the past seven seasons, are reloaded after a down season last year and look to climb the American Athletic Conference standings behind head coach Fran Dunphy, who was a former American University assistant coach under Hall of Famer Gary Williams and former NBA coach Ed Tapscott.
It will be the fifth time Dunphy has coached against AU. He is 4-0 against the Eagles, with each win coming while he was the coach at Penn.
Picked sixth in The American preseason poll, the Owls are led by the backcourt tandem of senior Will Cummings and junior Quenton DeCosey. Both named to the preseason all-conference second team, Cummings (16.8 ppg.) and DeCosey (15.4 ppg.) are Temple's top two scorers from last year, ranking sixth and eighth in The American, respectively.
Junior transfer (Texas) Jaylen Bond, a 6-foot-8 forward out of nearby Plymouth-Whitemarsh High, and 6-9 freshman forward Obi Enechionyia (Eh-netch-E-own-ya) will bolster a frontcourt that features returning starter, 6-11 junior forward/center Devontae Watson.