Temple Owls

Temple's Obi Enechionyia withdrawing from NBA draft, will return for senior year

Temple's Obi Enechionyia withdrawing from NBA draft, will return for senior year

It's only May, but it sounds like Fran Dunphy's Temple Owls just got a big boost for next season.

Star forward Obi Enechionyia will pull his name out of the upcoming NBA draft and will return to North Broad Street for his senior season.

CBSSports' Jon Rothstein first broke word of Enechionyia's decision Monday morning.

The 6-foot-10 Enechionyia was the Owls' leading rebounder last season with 5.8 boards per game. He was also second on the team in scoring with an average of 13.1 points per game. He dropped a season-high 26 points on rival St. Joe's during a 78-72 win on Hawk Hill in November.

Enechionyia can be a matchup problem for opponents with his length and his ability to stretch the floor. He shot 41 percent from field last season and 39 percent from three-point range. He will undoubtedly be the Owls' top frontcourt option this coming year.

But his mentorship and experience will be a big factor this season for the Owls, who will have to lean on underclassmen such as guards Shizz Alston, Alani Moore and Quinton Rose to pick up more of the scoring slack. Enechionyia, guard Josh Brown and role player Mike Robbins are the only remaining Owls who played in the 2016 NCAA Tournament first-round loss to Iowa. The 16-16 Owls did not advance to a postseason tournament last season.

Enechionyia declared for the draft in late March, but did not hire an agent, leaving him eligible to withdraw from the draft. He did not receive an invite to the recent NBA combine, but did have a private workout with the Boston Celtics in recent days.

The deadline for players without agents to withdraw from the draft is this Wednesday.

Temple forces four turnovers in upset of No. 23 Memphis

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AP Images/Chris Szagola

Temple forces four turnovers in upset of No. 23 Memphis

Anthony Russo threw two touchdown passes and Temple took advantage of four turnovers by Memphis to upset No. 23 Memphis 30-28 on Saturday.

Brady White passed for 355 yards and two scores for Memphis (5-1, 2-1 American), which fell behind 16-0 as the Owls turned the Tigers' mistakes into points.

The win was secured when an apparent diving catch for Tigers tight end Joey Magnifico to convert a fourth-and-11 was overturned by instant replay with 1:50 to play in the fourth. It would have placed Memphis inside the Temple 30, but instead the Owls (5-1, 2-0) were able to burn the clock.

Jager Gardner ran for a score and Isaiah Wright and Brandon Mack caught touchdown passes for Temple. Russo's 12-yard touchdown to Mack made it 30-21 with 12:48 left in the fourth.

Russo threw for 224 yards on 20-for-33 passing.

Kenneth Gainwell had eight catches for 98 yards and rushed 19 times for 107 yards and a touchdown for Memphis.

The takeaway
Memphis: The Tigers were able to move the football effectively against a Temple defense that had averaged 292.4 yards in yield through the first five games of the season. Memphis posted 502 yards of total offense.

Temple: The Owls could have buried Memphis early, but the first three Memphis turnovers were turned into Will Mobley's three field goals.

Poll implications 
Memphis: Entering Saturday at the No. 23 spot, the Tigers are likely to fall out of the poll after appearing in it for the first time this week.

Temple: The Owls have wins over two teams that were ranked in the Top 25 at the time of their contest, though Maryland has crashed since then. Temple might not break into the rankings this week but with No. 21 SMU and UCF up next, it has plenty of chances to impress.

Up next 
Memphis: The Tigers return home to face Tulane in a Saturday night.

Temple: The Owls visit SMU.

Re'Mahn Davis has big night as Temple tops East Carolina

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USA Today Images/Gregory J. Fisher

Re'Mahn Davis has big night as Temple tops East Carolina

BOX SCORE 

GREENVILLE, N.C. — Re’Mahn Davis rushed for a career-high 157 yards with a touchdown and Temple defeated East Carolina 27-17 on Thursday night.

The true freshman surpassed the 135 yards he had a week earlier in a win over Georgia Tech. He carried the ball 24 times and scored on a 1-yard run in the second quarter that broke a 10-10 tie.

Temple (4-1, 1-0 American Athletic Conference) had its quarterbacks go 27 of 39 for 253 yards. Starter Anthony Russo was 23 of 34 for 208 with a touchdown pass late in the third quarter to push the lead to 14. Branden Mack had nine receptions for 107 yards and Isaiah Wright 9 for 104, including a 7-yard score.

Holton Ahlers was 19 of 39 for 229 yards and two touchdowns, the last coming with 29 seconds left, for the Pirates (3-3, 0-2). CJ Johnson had eight catches for 100 yards with catches of 14 yards to open the scoring and 10 to close it.

Temple leads the series 9-8, having won all six matchups following the formation of the AAC. The game was delayed for about 10 minutes after some of the lights went out with about 3½ minutes remaining.