John Shaffer passed for 220 yards and a touchdown and 11th-ranked Penn State held off a late surge for the second straight week, defeating Temple at University Park.
Penn State, which blew a big lead to Maryland before winning last week, 20-18, improved to 2-0 with its 11th straight victory over the Owls in the series that the Nittany Lions lead, 19-3-1. Temple is 0-2.
Temple, led by running back Paul Palmer, who ran for 206 yards and scored two touchdowns, scored 15 second-half points. The Owls pulled within 27-25 with 3:43 remaining after Palmer scored on a 10-yard run and quarterback Lee Saltz hit Craig Sawyer for the two-point conversion. On the ensuing kickoff, Penn State's Blair Thomas had a 58-yard return to Temple's 42. From there, the Nittany Lions ran out the clock.
Temple Coach Bruce Arians said he felt his team had the game won, then turned around and beat themselves. "I feel sick," Arians said.
Penn State was led by fullback Steve Smith, a graduate of DeMatha in Hyattsville, Md., who had 13 carries for 96 yards. D.J. Dozier rushed for 81 yards on 13 carries before going out on the second play of the third quarter with an apparent pulled groin muscle. "We put him out of the game," Arians said.