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CFN Take: Hawaii Finally Gets First Win

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Nov 30, 2013


2013 Hawaii Warriors ... Head Coach: Norm Chow


Hawaii Warriors

2013 Record: 1-11
8/29 USC L 30-13
9/7 at Oregon St L 33-14
9/14 OPEN DATE
9/21 at Nevada L 31-9
9/28 Fresno State L 42-37
10/5 San Jose St L 37-27
10/12 at UNLV L 39-37
10/19 OPEN DATE
10/26 Colorado State L 35-28
11/2 at Utah State L 47-10
11/9 at Navy L 42-28
11/16 SDSU L 28-21 OT
11/23 at Wyoming L 59-56 OT
11/30 Army W 49-42
at Hawaii 49, Army 42
Basically … Hawaii won its first game of the year with Sean Schroeder throwing three touchdown passes and running for a six-yard score for a late lead, and then the D held on. Army QB A.J. Schurr ran for four second half touchdowns and scores on a two-yard run with 2:30 to play, but the Warriors closed out. Hawaii took a 28-7 lead going into halftime on a one-yard pass from RB Joey Iosefa to Harold Moleni, but Army and A.J. Schurr went off as the offense scored 21 straight until Iosefa scored on an eight-yard run to turn the momentum the other way.
- Hawaii outgained Army 608 yards to 406.
- Army QB A.J. Schurr completed 5-of-10 passes for 122 yards, and he ran 15 times for 47 yards and four scores.
- Hawaii RB Joey Iosefa ran 28 times for 154 yards and a score, and he threw a one-yard touchdown pass.
- Hawaii QB Sean Schroeder completed 23-of-33 passes for 332 yards and three scores with a pick and he ran for a score.

at Wyoming 59, Hawaii 56 OT
Basically … Hawaii was stuffed on fourth down and Wyoming got a 36-yard field goal to win in overtime and end a wild and crazy shootout. Brett Smith threw seven touchdown passes and ran for another, with three of the scoring passes to Robert Herron and a 71-yarder to Jalen Claiborne to take back the lead in the fourth. Hawaii kept up the pace with Sean Schroeder throwing six touchdown passes with four going to Chris Gant including a 33-yarder with just over a minute to play to force overtime. Joey Iosefa added two rushing touchdowns for the Warriors, but the Warrior D didn’t have an answer for Smith.
- Wyoming QB Brett Smith completed 29-of-48 passes for 498 yards and seven scores, and he ran 19 times for 142 yards and a touchdown. WR Robert Herron caught 11 passes for 141 yards and four touchdowns.
- Hawaii QB Sean Schroeder completed 37-of-50 passes for 499 yards and six scores with a pick. WR Chris Gant caught eight passes for 174 yards and four touchdowns.
- The two teams combined for 1,417 yards of total offense, 64 first downs and five turnovers.
- Hawaii RB Joey Iosefa ran 24 times for 91 yards and two scores.

San Diego State 28, at Hawaii 21 OT
Basically … Adam Muema ran for a two-yard score to help give San Diego State a seven-point lead in overtime, and Hawaii couldn’t answer getting sacked and with a few misfires giving the Aztecs the win. SDSU overcame four turnovers and forced overtime in the final few minutes on a 14-yard Chad Young run. Hawaii got two touchdown passes from Sean Schroeder and two scores from Joey Iosefa on a five-yard run and an eight-yard pass, but San Diego State kept pace with a 56-yard Colin Lockett touchdown catch and a 30-yard Donnel Pumphrey run.
- San Diego State RB Adam Muema ran 24 times for 163 yards and a score.
- Hawaii RB Joey Iosefa ran 37 times for 150 yards and a score, and he caught two passes for 18 yards and a touchdown.
- San Diego State lost four fumbles, Hawaii turned it over twice.
- Hawaii QB Sean Schroeder completed 18-of-36 passes for 194 yards and two scores with a pick.

at Navy 42, Hawaii 28
Basically … Navy got a fight from a game Hawaii team, but was able to pull away just a bit in the second half with Keenan Reynolds running for three of his four touchdowns including a 21-yarder in the final few minutes to finally provide some breathing room. Hawaii stuck around with three Sean Schroeder touchdown passes with two going to Clark Evans, but the defense couldn’t hold in the second half.
- Navy QB Keenan Reynolds completed 4-of-8 passes for 59 yards with a score and ran 28 times for 226 yards and four touchdowns.
- Hawaii QB Sean Schroeder completed 29-of-33 passes for 246 yards and three touchdowns.
- Hawaii RB Joey Iosefa ran 35 times for 191 yards and a touchdown.
- Navy RB Quinton Singleton ran 15 times for 93 yards and a score.

at Utah State 47, Hawaii 10, Nov. 2
Basically … Utah State amassed 533 yards of offense, rolling to a 23-3 halftime lead and coasting to a 37-point win over the Warriors in Logan. The Aggies put the game away in the third quarter. Leading 26-10, Utah State pushed its lead to 33-10 on a 30-yard touchdown pass from Darell Garretson to Travis Reynolds. Later, with 1:41 left in the third quarter, USU’s Kyler Fackrell intercepted a pass thrown by Hawaii’s Sean Schroeder and returned it 99 yards for a touchdown, making the score 40-10 in favor of the Aggies.
- Garretson completed 28-of-41 passes for 370 yards and three touchdowns with one interception.
- Reynolds caught 8 passes for 152 yards and one touchdown for Utah State. The Aggies featured four receivers who caught at least 44 yards worth of passes.
- Schroeder completed 13-of-26 passes for 213 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions, one of them a pick-six.
- Utah State controlled the ball for 39:14, compared to 20:46 for Hawaii.

Colorado State 35, at Hawaii 28
Basically … Kapri Bibbs ran for 147 yards and three scores, and Max Morgan took a fumble 73 yards for a touchdown on the way to a 35-17 Colorado State lead, but Hawaii made it a game late with ten unanswered points in the fourth quarter on a Sean Schroeder two-yard run and a 20-yard Tyler Hadden field goal, but that was it. Four Hawaii field goals proved costly, killing a 349-yard passing day from Schroeder. Bibbs scored from five, ten and 13 yards out.

at UNLV 39, Hawaii 37
Basically … UNLV survived a furious Hawaii rally with a game-winning 44-yard Nolan Kohorst field goal as time ran out. The Rebels had a 36-17 lead in the fourth quarter helped by three Kohorst field goals and two Tim Cornett short touchdown runs, but Hawaii roared back with Sean Schroeder hitting Steven Lakalaka from 48 yards out and Chris Gant for a 44-yard strike for the lead with just under two minutes to play. The Rebels went 51 yards in 12 plays and 1:39 to set up Kohorst for the win.
- Now UNLV is coming through in the clutch. With a fourth win in a row, the timing is perfect with the tough part of the schedule coming up, but the offense is clicking. Caleb Herring continues to be terrific, throwing for 385 yards and a score while leading the way to the game-winning score, and Tim Cornett had another all-star game with 162 yards and two scores on 29 carries. The receivers are explosive, the defense hasn’t been bad, and now the team is hot. The program hasn’t seen this in a long, long time.
- Sean Schroeder almost pulled it off. He got hot late and finished with 325 yards and four scores, but the defense couldn’t come up with one final stop. This could’ve been Hawaii’s big moment to come up with the first win of the season, but it’s just another close loss that could’ve gone the other way. The team is playing far better than it did last year, but it’s still a winless season so far.

San Jose State 37, at Hawaii 27
Basically … David Fales threw three touchdown passes including a 61-yarder to Chandler Jones, and Austin Lopez nailed three field goals as San Jose State took a 34-14 lead in the third quarter and hung on late. Hawaii got the passing attack going with Sean Schroeder throwing three touchdown passes including a 61-yarder to Chandler Jones and a 50-yard play to Chris Gant late, but the game didn’t get closer than ten points after halftime.
- David Fales still might not be back to his old form, and he only completed 16-of-35 passes with two picks, but he drives the ball down the field as well as anyone in the country when he gets his feet set and has time to work. The emergence of Tyler Winston to help the receiving corps has been a huge plus, catching six passes for 159 yards and a score.
- The Hawaii passing game was solid, and despite the three interceptions, it got things moving – it’s a step in the progression. The mistakes were costly, but Sean Schroeder’s 342 yards and three touchdowns were enough to keep the team alive. However, the Warriors couldn’t keep up the pace in the second half.
- The Warrior defensive front might have made several plays in the backfield, and the two sacks weren’t bad, generating decent pressure on Fales, but there were way too many problems against the run. San Jose State doesn’t pound the ball all that well, but it was effective when it had to be.
- The Spartan corners might have had a few issues coming up with stops, but Dasheon Frierson won more than his share of battles with several broken up passes with some good open field stops.

Fresno State 42, at Hawaii 37
Basically … Fresno State got up 42-3 with relative ease. Derek Carr ran for a score and threw two touchdown passes to Josh Harper from 30 and nine yards away, and L.J. Jones came up with a 56-yard interception return for a touchdown to make the game a laugher – but then Hawaii stormed back. The Warriors scored 34 unanswered points as Sean Schroeder bombed away with three touchdown passes to go along with two Steven Lakalaka scoring runs to pull within five with just over seven minutes to play. Schroeder had a few final shots at the end zone, but his last gasp bomb was picked off by Jones to seal the Bulldog win.
- Call this the wakeup call for Fresno State, even though it didn’t need one after a few close calls against Rutgers and Boise State. The Bulldogs showed why they were so special early on, and then appeared ready to hit the beach. Instead, the defense couldn’t come up with stops and the offense couldn’t stop giving the ball away.
- Hawaii didn’t give up. Instead of lying down and dying after getting obliterated early, the defense kept pushing. There wasn’t much of pass rush, but the five forced turnovers helped turn the game around. Sean Schroeder kept on throwing, and he had his shots late. Even in a loss, this might be the game that starts to turn things around. Maybe.
- The Bulldog pass rush was phenomenal. The D came up with five sacks, with Ejiro Ederaine and Donavon Lewis each coming up with two. It was frightening late, but again, it could be yet another teachable moment for a team that needs to keep its foot on the gas.
- Fresno State turned it over, but Hawaii committed penalties. There were two picks thrown by the Warrior quarterbacks, but the ten flags and the problems on third downs early in the game were the biggest issue.

at Nevada 31, Hawaii 9
Basically … Still without starting quarterback Cody Fajardo, Nevada got by on three touchdown passes from Tyler Stewart with two to Kolby Arendse in the first half and a seven-yarder to Brandon Wimberly to put it away in the third. Alex Bertrando got the defense into the act with a fumble return in the fourth. Hawaii got on the board first with a 28-yard field goal and Chris Gant caught a 21-yard touchdown pass late in the first.
- Nevada’s offense didn’t exactly explode, but it was effective enough. The old running game just isn’t there, and while Hawaii has a decent defense, the Wolf Pack should be able to run for more than 138 yards. They only outgained the Warriors on the ground by five yards.
- Six turnovers. The Hawaii quarterbacks threw four picks to go along with two fumbles that turned drive after drive into a disaster. Four Warrior passers combined to complete 24-of-45 passes for 243 yards with a score and four picks. None of them were particularly sharp – the picture isn’t any clearer.
- While he’s not Cody Fajardo, if Tyler Stewart can continue to be effective and efficient, the offense can get by. However, the Wolf Pack can’t keep running this poorly, and it can’t count on the D coming up with so many turnovers. Brock Hekking came up with three sacks and Markus Smith was terrific with two picks.
- Art Laurel continues to fight the good fight. The Hawaii linebacker is playing at an all-star level, making ten tackles with a sack and three tackles for loss.

at Oregon State 33, Hawaii 14, Sept. 7
Basically … With the scored tied at 14 coming out of halftime, Oregon State took control of the final 30 minutes scoring 19 unanswered points on two of Sean Mannion’s four touchdown passes and punctuated by a safety. Hawaii got a 15-yard touchdown catch from Clark Evans and a 23-yard interception return for a score from Julian Gener, but the offense stalled in the second half.
- Hawaii never had the ball. The Oregon State defense came up with stop after stop, allowing the Warriors to convert just 1-of-11 third down chances, hanging on to the ball for just over 20 minutes.
- Sean Mannion continues to take the Oregon State quarterback job by the horns, throwing for 372 yards and four scores. He threw a pick six, but everything else worked out just fine for the passing attack. The ground game stalled with Storm Woods only running for 50 yards on 17 carries, but he caught seven passes for 95 yards.
- Can the Warriors finally get the passing game rolling again? Taylor Graham tried, but he only completed 10-of-20 passes and was harassed all game. Sean Schroeder threw a pick, but he completed 8-of-12 throws – he just didn’t make anything happen down the field.
- Keith Kostol killed Hawaii. The Beaver punter only averaged 38.8 yards per kick, but he put four of his six boots inside the 20. Hawaii can’t handle a long field.

USC 30, at Hawaii 13, Aug. 29
Basically … It wasn’t pretty, but USC used this game like a true preseason tune-up. Hawaii got up 5-2 early, but the Trojans came up with 27 straight points helped by a 35-yard pick six from Josh Shaw and a 19-yard Cody Kessler touchdown pass to Nelson Agholor. Hawaii finally got in the end zone with 30 seconds to play on a 60-yard touchdown pass to Keith Kirkwood.
- And the answer to the USC quarterback situation is … ? There isn’t one. Cody Kessler completed 10-of-19 passes for 95 yards and a score with a pick, while Max Wittek completed 5-of-10 throws for 77 yards. The offense looked frustrated at times.
- Marqise Lee didn’t break out, but he came up with 104 yards on eight catches. With Silas Redd out, Tre Madden led all rushers with 19 carries for 109 yards.
- Hawaii couldn’t get into the end zone until the final moments, and it only finished with 23 rushing yards, but the offensive line generated a little bit of a push early on. The passing attack still didn’t click with Taylor Graham only connecting on 16-of-41 passes and with 60 of the 208 yards coming in the final minute.
- USC’s big problem? The offensive line. Hawaii cranked up nine tackles for loss and three sacks with Brenden Daley coming up with a huge day. He was camped out in the Trojan backfield.

Spring Analysis

Why To Be Excited It can’t be any worse in Norm Chow’s second season. Now he has had a full year to figure out what he has to work with and what needs adjusting, and after winning the final two games of last year, there’s hope to pick up where things left off with all 11 starters returning on offense along with all the backups. Very quietly, the defense wasn’t that bad last season, especially against the pass, and it gets eight starters back. Overall, this is a deep team with lots and lots of young talent ready to battle for jobs.

Why To Be Grouchy There’s still a long, long way to go to simply be decent again offensively. The quarterback situation needs to be settled once and for all this offseason and there has to be more pop and explosion for a passing game that was the third-least efficient in America. For an offense that struggled just to put up 300 yards per game, and with just two games with more than 27 points, it’s going to still be a learning and adjusting process. Defensively, corner Mike Edwards was an NFL caliber defensive back who’ll be missed, while Haku Correa is literally a big loss off the defensive front.

What Needs Working On Everything starts with the offensive line. The nature of the Hawaii offense always means lots of sacks, but last year was a huge problem with the quarterbacks not getting nearly enough time to operate. Outside of the 219 yards in the win over Lamar and the 229 to close out against South Alabama, the running game was a mere rumor. The bigger problem was a passing game that threw just five touchdown passes total in October and November – that was a nice half back in the Colt Brennan days.

Team Concerns For 2013: Really? The Hawaii offense sucked? The passing game didn't work and was wildly inefficient considering that head coach Norm Chow is such a legend, and the running game barely registered on the map. All 11 starters are back on offense, but the experience has to bring points. It didn't help that Warriors struggled to hit field goals with Tyler Hadden 13-of-21 tries, and it was a real problems that the defense wasn't even close to stopping anyone's ground game and had a hard time getting off the field.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Receivers. It's Hawaii. It's time to get the passing game going again. Norm Chow is getting his share of targets to play around with led by Ammon Barker and Marcus Kemp out of Utah to develop for down the road, and four JUCO transfers along with tight end Joshua Long to provide an instant infusion of talent. Quarterbacks Aaron Swahlen and Keenan Ewaliko are going to be thrown into the practice mix early on to try boosting the offense, while the defense needs JUCO transfers Tiji Hill and end Charles Tuaau to fight for starting jobs.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 112. That Class Was Heavy On ... It might sound crazy for Hawaii, but it needs quarterbacks. David Graves will have the job all to himself for now, but new head coach Norm Chow has to find a few good backup options to fight for the gig. The offensive line has to be addressed for down the road, and Chow will want to make better use of the tight ends, meaning he has to go get them. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 92. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. The bulk of the class is at defensive back where corners Ellis Henderson and Brian Clay lead a strong group coming in for the secondary. The immediate impact, though, should be at receiver where JUCO transfers Cecil Doe and Chris Gant will be asked to be the new playmakers from Day One, working on the other end of Bryant Moniz’s passes. There isn’t much else for the offense with the class working mostly to improve the defensive side for a second year in a row.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 87. That Class Was Heavy On ... Defensive linemen. It's Hawaii so the passing game was hardly ignored with a slew of new receivers signed to go along with QB Kevin Spain from Arizona, but this class is all about the defense and all about getting better up front. There isn't the JUCO influx of last year when head coach Greg McMackin looked to immediately patch all the gaping holes. This is about the strength in numbers with seven linemen of all shapes and sizes to build around.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 60. That Class Was Heavy On ... JUCO, JUCO, JUCO. Overall, the offense got the biggest boost with three quarterback prospects, including two good ones in Cayman Shutter and Corey Nielsen, and several backs and receivers, but it’s the junior college haul that should make the most noise. Head coach Greg McMackin brought in ten ready-made players with the most help coming for the defensive line with tackles David Hofoka and Zach Masch.

 

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