Jahad Thomas rushed for 109 yards and two touchdowns to lead Temple to a 37-3 win over Charlotte on Friday night, as the Owls are 4-0 for the first time since 1974.
Temple has also beaten Penn State, Cincinnati and UMass.
“We’ve definitely been playing hard,” Thomas said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “Us just putting in the work, we knew we had some great players and great coaches around us. We just had to grow up, mature a little bit and just start playing. Not just playing, but executing at a level that we all can execute on.”
Thomas’ first touchdown gave Temple a 10-0 lead midway through the first quarter, a 1-yard run to culminate a 13-play, 74-yard drive. Thomas scored from one yard out again in the second quarter to make it 17-3.
“I just got to give credit to the O-Line,” Thomas said. “They did a great job all day. We were getting four-, five-, six-yard runs all game. So just to cap off that drive with a touchdown, it just shows the work ethic and emphasis that we put on running the ball. I just got to give all that to our offensive line.”
Thomas led the Owls in receiving with three catches for 48 yards but credited wideout Robby Anderson for his stellar play. Anderson had three catches for 35 yards and two touchdowns.
“Man, that was great,” Thomas said. “He started off pretty slow – I think he had two drops – but we kept him motivated, kept encouraging him, kept talking to him and just said, ‘Focus on catching the ball. The plays will come.’ He’s a great receiver. He has great hands. So when his number was called, he just focused up a little more and made the plays when his number was called.”
Thomas now has more rushing yards through four games (503) than he had all of last season (384). He also has six touchdowns.
“That was a big point of emphasis coming into the season,” Thomas said of the running game. “As you can see, we’re able to run the ball pretty successfully.”
Temple hosts Tulane (1-2) on Oct. 10.