Sept. 8, 2008
Philadelphia - The Temple University men's basketball team has been picked to finish second in the Atlantic 10 Conference by Athlon while the magazine projects the Owls and preseason A-10 favorite Xavier into the NCAA Tournament. Athlon has Temple slated as a 12-seed in the 2009 NCAA field and facing #5-seed Wisconsin. The magazine hits the newsstands September 9.
Senior Dionte Christmas, recently rated as the top returning player in the A-10 by College Chalktalk.com, was named Athlon's preseason A-10 Player of the Year while also garnering honorable mention All-America honors. Christmas, who became the third player in A-10 history to repeat as league scoring champion, averaged 19.7 points per game as a junior to earn first team all-conference honors. The Philadelphia native (Philadelphia Lutheran Christian Academy) has scored 1,381 points to rank 26th on the Temple all-time scoring list. His 670 points scored during the 2007-08 season is the 12th highest total in the 114-year history of Owl basketball.
Christmas also set a new single season record for three-point field goals with 104 made. He now has connected on 212 three-pointers for his career to rank sixth on the TU all-time list.
The 2008 A-10 Champion Owls open their season at the Charleston Classic against East Tennessee State on November 14.