@FakeWIPCaller's Ten Best (And Ten Worst) Philadelphia Sports Moments of 2013

@FakeWIPCaller's Ten Best (And Ten Worst) Philadelphia Sports Moments of 2013

The year 2013 got off to a pretty good start for Philadelphia sports fans, with the firing on New Years' Eve of Andy Reid. Unfortunately, nothing else good happened for quite awhile, with the Phillies, Sixers and Flyers all turning in awful seasons. It was another year without a local championship, just like all of them except for '80, '83 and '08.

But there were happy developments too, even a few that didn't involve Nick Foles. Here are the ten best and ten worst things that happened in local sports this year:

Best:

1. That Flyers line brawl, in which Ray Emery skated the length of the ice in order to deck the Capitals' goalie, hereby kicking off one of the best weeks in Philadelphia sports history. Emery should never have to buy a drink in this town again.

2. Chip Kelly's appearance at Wing Bowl. Sure, the season itself has been pretty exciting, too. But wasn't that just awesome?

3. Nick Foles' emergence as the best Eagles quarterback ever, or at least since Jeff Garcia.

4. Riley Cooper's complete and total redemption. After all those touchdowns, no one can ever say a bad word about him again.

5. No longer in Philadelphia: Andy Reid, Andrew Bynum, Nnamdi Asomugha,  Ilya Bryzgalov, Jason Babin, Juan Castillo, JIm Washburn, Delmon Young, Kwame Brown.

6. The Sixers finally discovered, years too late, that you have to lose to win.

7. The Redskins and Giants both suffered major, highly embarrassing franchise collapses. Your turn, Cowboys.

8. Chase Utley finally wrote back to Mac.

9. Bernie Parent's surprising emergence as America's leading sex advice columnist.

10. This.

And the worst:

1. The Eagles retiring Donovan McNabb's number. A.J. Feeley was much more deserving.

2. Sam Hinkie's outrageous refusal to give talk radio interviews during the offseason.

3. Sports Illustrated putting Nick Foles on the cover. It's like they're trying to destroy us on purpose.

4. The Sixers hiring a new coach without even considering Allen Iverson.

5. Ilya Bryzgalov giving an interview in which he praised Stalin and, even worse, criticized Philadelphia.

6. The Phillies, continuing to hang on to their own expensive veteran players and not even lifting a finger to sign away other teams' expensive veteran players.

7. Philadelphia was rejected as the host city for Wrestlemania in 2015, because apparently we're "not friendly enough." For Wrestlemania.

8. Nick Foles narrowly lost out to Pope Francis for Time's Person of the Year.

9. Cary Williams on sconses.

10. Cary Williams on the field.

Other Philly sports takes:

- Awesome win for the Eagles Sunday night against the Bears. But it's concerning to me that they couldn't get to 60 points. I'm afraid that might come back to bite them.

- I hear Festivus was earlier in the week, although for me, every day is the Airing of the Grievances.

- Comcast this week showed Ruben Amaro talking on his BlackBerry. Yes, he still uses a BlackBerry.

- Welcome, Josh Innes. Looking forward to speaking with you.

Merry Christmas, everyone! It's the one week out of the year when Santa Claus isn't associated primarily with irate Eagles fans.

Follow @FakeWIPCaller on Twitter.

Temple at No. 19 Navy: Owls go for first AAC title

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Temple at No. 19 Navy: Owls go for first AAC title

Temple (9-3) at No. 19 Navy (9-2)
Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium
Saturday, noon, ABC

It would have been hard to picture Temple in the American Athletic Conference championship game after the Owls’ first game of the season, a 28-13 loss to Army.

But that’s exactly where they are three months later, as Temple will take on No. 19 Navy in the conference championship game Saturday.

The Owls and Midshipmen have both been handling opponents as of late. Temple’s won its last four games by at least three touchdowns, while Navy has outscored opponents 141-62 in its past two games.

Let’s take a look at how one of the country’s top offenses and one of the country’s top defenses match up.

Scouting Temple
The Owls' defense seems to get better every week. Temple ranks No. 3 in the Football Bowl Subdivision in total defense and No. 10 in scoring defense. The only two teams that rank higher than the Owls in both categories are Alabama and Michigan.

Teams haven’t scored more than 13 points against the Owls in their last four games, and Temple is outscoring opponents 123-23 during that stretch.

Redshirt-senior defensive lineman Haason Reddick was named a first team all-conference selection earlier this week. He leads the FBS in tackles for loss. Redshirt-senior Praise Martin-Oguike is coming off one of his best games of the season last week against East Carolina, in which he had two sacks, including a forced fumble. He has seven sacks this season.

On offense, Temple’s goal this week will be to sustain drives and keep Navy’s offense off the field. The Owls are currently No. 5 in the FBS in time of possession, holding the ball for more than 34 minutes per game.

Earlier in the week, coach Matt Rhule said senior quarterback Phillip Walker was questionable for Saturday’s game. Walker will likely play, but the Owls might be without one of their top offensive weapons.

Rhule said sophomore running back Ryquell Armstead is doubtful. Armstead has 842 yards and 13 touchdowns this season.

Scouting Navy
The Midshipmen have one of the simplest — yet at that same time one of the best — offenses in the country. Navy ranks No. 2 in rushing yards at 342 yards per game.

Quarterback Will Worth runs the triple option for Navy. He has 2,544 total yards of offense and 33 total touchdowns. He’s passed for 1,363 yards and rushed for 1,181 more.  Worth has a touchdown in 11 straight games.

Worth has attempted 258 rushes compared to 115 passing attempts. Four other Navy players have at least 40 rushing attempts this season.

Senior wide receiver Jamir Tillman is the Midshipmen’s best receiving threat. The 6-foot-4 wideout has 32 catches for 533 yards and two touchdowns.

Navy’s defense hasn’t been quite as elite as its offense. The Midshipmen have allowed 30 or more points in four of their last five games.

The Midshipmen are allowing 265 passing yards per game. Opposing quarterbacks have averaged 313 yards and three touchdowns in their last three contests.

Storyline to watch: Can Temple find a way to stop the triple option?
The last time these two teams played was in 2014, when Navy ran for 487 yards and four touchdowns in a 31-24 win against the Owls at Lincoln Financial Field. Temple’s most recent matchup against the triple option was when it lost to Army in its season opener. The Black Knights ran for 329 yards and four touchdowns. With only a week to prepare, Temple will have to find a way to cure its option woes if it wants a chance to win Saturday.

What’s at stake?
The Owls have only won one other conference championship in program history, when they won the Mid-Atlantic Conference in 1967. A win would also give Temple its third 10-win season in program history. If Western Michigan loses Friday night, Temple also puts itself in contention for a spot in the Cotton Bowl with a win.

Prediction
Temple has to figure out this option thing at some point, right? The Owls’ ability to convert on third down and sustain long drives will help slow Navy's offense. This one will most likely come down to who has the ball last, but the Owls are a little bit more well-rounded, so they get the edge. Temple 31, Navy 28