By Julie Glass
Daniel Jones threw for 423 yards and five touchdowns, T.J. Rahming caught 12 passes for 240 yards and two scores, and Duke blew past Temple 56-27 in the Independence Bowl.
Duke (8-5) snapped a two-game losing streak by putting on an offensive show. The Blue Devils scored touchdowns on seven straight drives, flipping a 27-14 deficit in the second quarter to a 56-27 lead by midway through the fourth.
“We kind of hit a lull for a second, but I don’t think we ever lost confidence,” Jones said. “We knew we had some good stuff and if we caught a few breaks we could catch momentum and keep it rolling.”
Jones’ five touchdown passes and 423 yards passing both set Independence Bowl records. So did Duke’s 56 points. Cutcliffe wasn’t surprised by the offensive success because he felt the team’s preparation was excellent.
Temple (8-5) lost for just the second time in its past eight games.
“We’ve got a great culture, we love each other and we’re tough,” Temple interim coach Ed Foley said. “But you still have to go out and make plays. And (Duke) went out and made more plays than us. That’s what cost us the game.”
The Owls took a 13-7 lead in the first half after Delvon Randall’s 52-yard interception return for a touchdown. It was the 10th game this season in which they scored a non-offensive touchdown.
Temple pushed ahead 27-14 late in the second quarter, but Duke responded with 22-yard touchdown pass from Jones to Rahming to pull within 27-21 by halftime.
Temple’s Anthony Russo completed 25 of 46 passes for 228 yards, one touchdown and one interception. The Owls didn’t score in the second half and gave up 42 unanswered points.
“They brought a little more pressure, but that’s on me and the offensive line to get that picked up,” Russo said. “I just don’t think we found our groove in the second half.”