Temple enters name into hat for Big 12 expansion

The Temple Owls were a big-time competitor in the AAC last season as they won the AAC East and just barely missed winning the conference. Now, it looks like athletic director Patrick Kraft and head coach Matt Rhule are looking to get their team a shot at joining the Big 12 in the next few weeks.

Kraft talked about how the Owls wold be very worthy of joining the Big 12 in the future not just because of their emerging prowess as a football team, but their traditional dominance on the basketball court.

We have the fifth-winningest basketball program in the country and football is emerging at this great program,” he told Philly.com’s Marc Narducci. “We have had five bowl-eligible seasons in seven years and we believe we are as qualified as anybody else.”

Houston, UConn, Cincinnati and Memphis have all been rumored to possibly be added to the conference ahead of the 2016 season. Temple could also be a good addition for the Big 12 as they would give the conference a television market in the Northeast, particularly in Philadelphia.

Kraft also made it clear that the school isn’t small and bragged about their size if they were to join the conference.

“A lot of people have this misconception that we are a small private institution,” he said. “We are at 38,000-plus and we would be the second-largest in the Big 12 if we were to go.”

The Owls went 10-4 and made an appearance in the Boca Raton Bowl in football last year while going 21-12 and making the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2013 in basketball.

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