By Mike Dougherty

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Temple Owls came up short in their bid for a Cinderella season after Saturday night’s dramatic loss to Notre Dame. One thing to take away from the game, though, is that Philadelphia proved it’s hungry for a college football powerhouse — and the future looks bright for the cherry and white.

America was watching as the Owls went toe to toe with the Fighting Irish for 60 minutes.

Temple play-by-play announcer and former KYW Newsradio anchor Harry Donahue says there’s no longer any doubt that the university’s football program has the talent to hang with the big boys.

“The playing field has been leveled for Temple,” Donahue says. “It’s just a matter of going forward, keeping in place what really started with Al Golden 11 years ago, and developing a winning culture.”

Athletic Director Pat Craft believes the exposure is going to really help with recruiting going forward.

“I think it’s huge. It’s extremely important. We had a seven hour commercial across the country,” he says. “I think this just elevated to a whole ‘nother level.”

Craft says while there are no moral victories in college football, there are a lot of positives to take away from the experience.

He says he’s proud of the team and says now they will turn their focus to SMU and winning a conference title.

“We turned the page,” Craft says, “and now we’re focused on SMU on Friday night.”