PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — College basketball is quickly approaching, and hopes are high for the Temple Owls this season.  The three-time defending Atlantic-10 champions are ranked #22 this preseason.

Head coach Fran Dunphy talks about keys to success this season:

“The way we play it’s always the same. We are going to have to be really solid defensively in that half-court scoring area. And then, on offense, we are going to have to make really good decisions.  We have to take care of the ball, and when we get open shots we have to knock them down and just be a real reliable team on both ends of the court.”

Hear the entire Fran Dunphy interview in this KYW SportsPod…

The Owls have some key players returning, like junior guard Juan Fernandez and senior big man Lavoy Allen.  Dunphy says Allen’s rebounding and defense are already at an NBA level, but the coach says the 6’9″ forward has some room for improvement in his offensive game:

“He’s a very good passer, his assist-to-turnover (ratio) for a big guy (is) very good.  Now he has to step away from the basket and make jump shots, but he also has to have one of those reliable moves that he can make down on the block.  That’s the next step for him in his maturation.”

Dunphy talks about one player who could blossom this season:

“I think the one guy we are going to need to do a very good job on the defensive end and be a consistent jump shooter would be Scootie Randall, a Philadelphia-area player here at Communications Tech and a good guy.  And I think it’s his year to shine in that regard.”

A 6’6″ junior forward, Randall averaged 1.9 points per game last season in 25 contests off the bench.

Temple went 29-6 a season ago, their season ending with a first-round loss to Cornell in the NCAA Tournament.  The Owls will open the 2010-2011 season on Friday night at the Liacouras Center against Seton Hall.

Reported by Matt Leon, KYW Newsradio.

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