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at Washington 40 ... Hawaii 32

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Posted Sep 10, 2011


Week 2 CFN Fearless Prediction & Game Story - Hawaii at Washington

2011 Predictions & Game Story 

Week 2 - Hawaii at Washington


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 Sept. 10 at Washington 40 … Hawaii 32
CFN Analysis: The Huskies might have been a little shaky at times to start the season, but 2-0 is 2-0 going into the trip to Nebraska. Keith Price did a fantastic job of getting the passing game going with 315 yards and four scores, but the team had a really, really hard time closing out the Warriors, who rallied furiously to try to come back. Devin Aguilar had a big game as Price’s top target, and Chris Polk ran for 107 yards and a score, but the pass defense has been a disaster so far, and now the run defense will be tested against the Huskers. Getting more plays in the backfield will be a must.

Bryant Moniz tried his best to bring the team back after a rocky start, but it was too tough a hill to climb after the defense struggled in the first quarter. Jeremiah Ostrowski caught 11 passes for 87 yards and a score, and Royce Pollard caught eight passes for 128 yards, but it wasn’t enough. The offensive line isn’t giving Moniz enough time to work, while the passing game hasn’t kicked in to be like normal. With UNLC, and UC Davis coming up, Moniz should be able to get in sync with his targets and get everything geared up for the WAC opener against Louisiana Tech. The offense is getting there, but it’s not quite in sync yet.

(AP) SEATTLE -- Keith Price connected on his first eight passes en route to a career-high 315 yards and four touchdowns, and Washington used a blistering start to hold off Hawaii's late rally for a 40-32 win on Saturday afternoon.

Washington (2-0) jumped to a 14-0 lead in fewer than 8 minutes, led 21-0 late in the first quarter, then played counter-punch with the Warriors, who could not overcome the Huskies torrid start.

Price tossed his fourth TD to Austin Seferian-Jenkins, a 14-yarder in the back of the end zone with 10:02 left after Hawaii cut the Huskies' lead to 31-26.

Sterling Jackson had two short TD runs for Hawaii (1-1) and Richard Torres returned an interception 99 yards for a score, but the Warriors fell to 1-8 on the road since 1998 against BCS teams.

Wearing unique white helmets with the American flag embodied within the 'W' on the side of the helmets in honor of the 10th anniversary of 9/11, the Huskies answered the call of coach Steve Sarkisian and his public berating of his team after the Huskies squeaked past FCS-champion Eastern Washington 30-27 in the season opener.

Price seemed to take that to heart and combined with aggressive early play calling, picked apart the Hawaii secondary. He hit Seferian-Jenkins for a combined 77 yards on the first two plays from scrimmage and Chris Polk's 2-yard TD run came just 70 seconds after the kickoff.

Price added TD passes of 10 and 20 yard to Jermaine Kearse in the first quarter and finished the quarter 8-for-8 for 193 yards and two scores. By the time Price tossed his first incompletion with 12:30 left in the second quarter, the Huskies were already up 21-0 and had 266 yards of total offense, more than the 250 total yards they had in their opener.

Hawaii appeared ready to answer early in the game on a pair of occasions, only to make critical mistakes they couldn't afford on a day that was very island-like, with the thousands of green and black clad Warriors fans in attendance fanning themselves on the warm afternoon. Royce Pollard hauled in a 41-yard completion on Hawaii's opening drive, only to be stripped from behind by Cort Dennison and see Washington's Gregory Ducre fall on the fumble at the Huskies' 5.

Later in the half and trailing 21-0, Ducre knocked away a fourth-down pass intended for Darius Bright from the Washington 9.

Hawaii quarterback Bryant Moniz finished 31 of 45 for 333 yards, but his running that was a threat last week against Colorado was absent. Moniz, who ran for a career-high 121 yards and 3 TDs against Colorado, was limited to two yards on nine carries. He did score on a 1-yard plunge to cap a 14-play drive starting the second half, but was sacked twice.

Moniz was intercepted by Desmond Trufant with less than 5 minutes to go deep in Washington's end, but the Warriors defense held and Moniz hit Jeremiah Ostrowski on an 8-yard TD pass with 1:39 left. The extra point was blocked and returned 87 yards by Trufant for two points to give the Huskies a 40-32 lead.

The ensuing onside kick was perfectly placed by kicker Tyler Hadden, but it came up inches short of rolling the required 10 yards and Washington took possession.

Price's one mistake came late in the first half when he locked on receiver Devin Aguilar running a quick slant at the goal line and Torres stepped in front of the pass. Torres raced nearly untouched the length of the field, matching the longest interception return in Hawaii history.

Price immediately answered after his mishap. Given a short field, he took just three plays to find Aguilar on a 31-yard TD with 44 seconds left in the half to give the Huskies a 28-14 lead at the break.

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Hawaii (1-0) at Washington (1-0) Sept. 10, 3:30

Here’s The Deal … Just because Hawaii and Washington are each 1-0 does not mean both programs are equally pleased with how they got to this point. The Warriors already have a victory over a Pac-12 opponent, easily handling Colorado at home, 34-17. Although the Buffaloes are not a conference contender, the win was still an important step for Hawaii. It gives the school a robust head of steam as it begins its quest for a league crown in its final year as a member of the WAC.

The Huskies, on the other hand, may have exited Week 1 with more question marks than answers. Sure, they survived a tough contest, but the victory came against Eastern Washington, a member of the FCS. If U-Dub can’t raise the level of its intensity and improve its overall execution, it may not be so fortunate this weekend. The Warriors will arrive on the mainland confident and eager to sweep the Pac-12 portion of the schedule.

Why Hawaii Might Win: Bryant Moniz. Having already strafed one Pac-12 defense, the senior quarterback has another one in his crosshairs. A prolific passer, he added a new twist to his game in the opener by rushing for 121 yards and three touchdowns. Now, he gets back physical WR Darius Bright who’ll join playmaker Royce Pollard on the perimeter. That equals trouble for a Washington defense that had all kinds of problems stopping QB Bo Levi Mitchell and the Eastern Washington passing attack. Do not sleep on the Warriors defense. The underrated group held Colorado RB Rodney Stewart to 52 yards in the opener, while sacking Tyler Hansen seven times.

Why Washington Might Win: The Huskies are determined to attack the weakest areas of the Hawaii roster, the rebuilt offensive line and a suspect secondary. An all-new group of blockers will have its hands full with the U-Dub D-line, especially pile-moving DT Alameda Ta'amu and rush end Hau'oli Jamora. While the Warriors can certainly run the ball, they no longer have the security blanket of a reliable ground game. It’ll be up to inexperienced QB Keith Price to exploit the vulnerable Hawaii defensive backfield. He missed the mark in the opener, throwing for just 102 yards on 25 attempts, and needs to do a better job of involving receivers Jermaine Kearse and Devin Aguilar.

What To Watch Out For: Okay, so maybe Colorado didn’t provide the stiffest test, but it’s hard not to be impressed by that aggressive Hawaii defense. It toyed with the Buffs offensive line, generating pressure from the likes of Paipai Falemalu who chipped in six tackles, three stops for loss and two sacks. Washington must control the line of scrimmage in order to protect Price and create space for RB Chris Polk. Polk is going to be the best antidote for keeping the Hawaii offense off the field.

What Will Happen: Hawaii vs. Washington promises to be the best game of Week 2 that very few viewers are going to see. It shapes up as a competitive, back-and-forth nail-biter that doesn’t get decided until late in the fourth quarter. The Warriors D is the wild card, capable of fashioning enough money plays to deliver an upset. Polk, however, will be the Huskies’ catalyst, carrying his team to a thrilling win with 150 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.

CFN Prediction: Washington 31 … Hawaii 30
- Click For Latest Line From ATS: Washington -5.5    O/U: 52

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