Former St. Joseph standout Matakevich named to All-AAC football team

Tyler Matakevich, a former football star at St. Joseph High School, had a superb year as a junior linebacker for the Temple University football team and was selected to the American Athletic Conference All-Conference First Team.

Tyler Matakevich (Temple University Photo)

Tyler Matakevich (Temple University Photo)

Matakevich had 117 total tackles, the third consecutive year in which he had at least 100 tackles, and he led the AAC this year with 88 solo tackles. He joined former New York Jets star Joe Klecko (1974-76) and Steve Conjar (1979-81) as the only players in Temple history to have had three straight seasons of at least 100 tackles.

The 6-foot-1, 235-pounder was one of six players to be selected to the AAC All-Conference First Team for the second year in a row. He came up with many big plays throughout the year. Matakevich sacked University of Connecticut quarterback Chandler Whitmer in the end zone for a safety during the fourth week of the year. He tied a school record with 16 solo tackles during a victory over East Carolina and he intercepted a pass by Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg and returned it 47 yards.

Matakevich ended his stellar season by racking up 16 total tackles, including 13 solo and three for a loss, while helping lead the Owls to a 10-3 victory over Tulane in their season finale on Dec. 6. He was the “Defensive Player of the Week” in the AAC for that performance.

The Owls finished 6-4 overall, 4-4 in the conference and were bowl eligible for the first time since 2011 but they did not receive a bowl invitation. Matakevich was the only player from Temple selected to the AAC All-Conference First Team. Four of his junior teammates made the AAC All-Conference Second Team.

Matakevich first made the all-conference first team as a sophomore when he led the NCAA with 8.8 solo tackles per game and was second in the nation with his 11.4 total tackles per game. He is now sixth all-time at Temple with 355 tackles and his streak of 35 consecutive games played is tied for the longest on the Owls.

Matakevich was a star linebacker and running back at St. Joseph. He was an All-State linebacker who led Coach Joe DellaVecchia’s Cadets to a 10-2 record and a second straight state championship during the fall of 2010. He made the 2009-10 All-FCIAC East Team and the 20010-11 All-FCIAC East Team. Matakevich was also an outstanding baseball player for the Cadets. He made the All-FCIAC First Team as a junior when he had a .372 batting average with 32 RBIs and five home runs and he was a repeat all-conference first-teamer the following year.

Tyler Matakevich of the Temple football team closes in on a quarterback this season. (Joseph V. Labolito/Temple University Photo)

Tyler Matakevich of the Temple football team closes in on a quarterback this season. (Joseph V. Labolito/Temple University Photo)

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