2010 Hawaii Preview
Hawaii QB Bryant Moniz
You know what Hawaii is going to do. The passing game is going to throw for a bazillion yards, the games will be wild shootouts, and there will be some upsets at home against teams that melt after the long trip. Can the Warriors get back in the WAC title hunt? Check out the CFN Hawaii Preview.
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If it was so easy, why doesn't everyone do it?
Head coach: Greg McMackin
3rd year: 13-14
Off. 21, Def. 24, ST 3
Lettermen Lost: 29
Ten Best Hawaii Players
1. WR Greg Salas, Sr.
2. FS Mana Silva, Sr.
3. SS Spencer Smith, Sr.
4. WR Kealoha Pilares, Sr.
5. QB Bryant Moniz, Jr.
6. CB Lametrius Davis, Sr.
7. CB Jeramy Bryant, Sr.
8. LB Paipai Falemalu, Soph.
9. WR Rodney Bradley, Sr.
10. RB Alex Green, Sr.
Sept. 2 USC
Sept. 11 at Army
Sept. 18 at Colorado
Sept. 25 Charleston South.
Oct. 2 Louisiana Tech
Oct. 9 at Fresno State
Oct. 16 Nevada
Oct. 23 at Utah State
Oct. 30 Idaho
Nov. 6 at Boise State
Nov. 13 OPEN DATE
Nov. 20 San Jose St
Nov. 27 at New Mexico St
Dec. 4 UNLV
Hawaii doesn't get the talent or the athletes that other schools are able to bring in. The program operates on a shoestring recruiting budget, has FCS-level facilities, and is literally on an island away from the rest of the college football world, but year after year after year the passing production keeps on flowing.
Scoff all you want about the lack of a running game and sneer at the lack of results on the road against the teams with a pulse, but with all the limitations and all the issues, Hawaii keeps on putting up big numbers. Who wouldn't want to have the nation's third ranked passing game and 14th ranked offense?
This year's Hawaii team will be the textbook definition of fun-bad. The offense will put up a bazillion yards, the defense will give up yards and points by the bucketload, and Warrior games will once again be late night appointment television for college football fans looking to close out their Saturdays (and start off their extremely early Sunday mornings) with a bang.
There are major concerns on the line, especially the offensive front, and pass protection and pass rush will both be ongoing issues. However, there are enough good pieces in place to be Hawaii again with a loaded receiving corps, one of the WAC's most experienced secondaries, and more athleticism and speed across the board than the program has had in a long time.
Once again, teams full of 18-to-22-year-olds will get all wide eyed when they get to make the wonderfully long road trip, defenses that aren't focused will get lit up, and there will be some extremely fun, wildly entertaining games week in week out.
All things considered, Hawaii will still produce and will still be a threat to go to a bowl game and pull off some big home upsets. There's not enough there to win the WAC, and there will be some ugly losses along the way, but the program, because of the offense and style of play, has done the near impossible by remaining relevant despite not being in the BCS.
What to watch for on offense: The receiving corps. It was an issue going into last year with the loss of Davone Bess, Ryan Grice-Mullen, Jason Rivers and C.J. Hawthorne, and the Warriors simply reloaded with Greg Salas making 106 catches and with Kealoha Pilares and Rodney Bradley showing great upside, and with a slew of dangerous backups ready to rotate in. As long as QB Bryant Moniz gets time, the receivers will make the passing game even more lethal than it was last year.
What to watch for on defense: The secondary. While the stats weren't that bad, mainly because everyone ran the ball on the Hawaii defense, the Warrior secondary gave up too many big plays and allowed the chains to move too easily. This year the defensive backs might turn out to be the team's biggest strength (or second behind the receiving corps) with five regular starters returning and blazing speed among the backups. The combination of Mana Silva and Spencer Smith could be the most productive 1-2 safety punches in the WAC, while Lametrius Davis and Jeramy Bryant are solid senior corners.
The team will be far better if … it can score when it has the chance. The Warriors put up a ton of yards but struggled to punch it in and generate points. Hawaii finished dead last in the nation in red zone offense scoring a mere 61% of the time when getting inside the 20, scoring a pathetic 35-of-57 times. The team simply isn't good enough to not take advantage of every chance.
The schedule: It's just light enough to win the seven games needed to go bowling. The key early on will be to win one of the three non-conference dates, starting with USC and going on the road to face Army and Colorado (fine, so it's all about trying to beat Army), and then the focus will be on holding serve at home. Forget about the road trip to Boise State, and winning at Fresno State will be a tall task, but getting Nevada, Idaho, and Louisiana Tech at home is a major plus. If the Warriors can pull off a road win at New Mexico State, there's a chance to go on a decent finishing kick with the home finale against UNLV likely to be for the bowl bid.
Best offensive player: Senior WR Greg Salas. The 6-2, 200-pound junior was nice piece of the puzzle in 2008 making 57 catches, and then he blew up as the main man with 106 grabs for 1,590 yards and eight touchdowns. While he was erased by the better teams, he's going to be the one everyone has to focus on allowing his dangerous running mates, Kealoha Pilares and Rodney Bradley, to shine in single coverage.
Best defensive player: Senior FS Mana Silva. At 6-1 and 220 pounds, he's big, active safety who could play strong safety if needed but is a playmaker at free safety. The transfer from Oregon State paid off with six interceptions with three coming in a three game stretch over the second half of the season, and he was a steady tackle throughout. Combining with strong safety Spencer Smith, Silva should come up with an all-star caliber season if he can continue being the same consistent playmaker.
Key player to a successful season: Junior OT Austin Hansen. The Warrior offensive front hasn't consistently stopped a pass rushing line in years, and the outlook doesn't appear to be all that great this season with just one starter back. Hansen wasn't a rock in pass protection, but as the long returning starter, and moving from right tackle to the left side, it's up to him to be a steady anchor from the start. The difference between a good season and a great year will likely be the pass protection from the outside, and that has to start with Hanson.
The season will be a success if … the Warriors go to a bowl. The team did a nice job of rallying late last year in what appeared to be a lost season, only to have Wisconsin roll into town and crush the dreams with a thud. This year, even with the holes on the lines and the concerns about consistency on both sides of the ball, there's no reason to shoot for anything less than seven wins and a 14th game.
Key game: Sept. 11 at Army. Forget about beating USC at home, and getting by Nevada could be a nightmare, so that means the Warriors will likely have to win at least two road games to go bowling. New Mexico State on November 27th is winnable, as is the date with Utah State on October 23rd, but it would be a big plus to get a good road win early on over a resurgent team like Army, who won't be a killer, but will be far better. If Hawaii loses, then it'll likely face an 0-3 start before the Charleston Southern layup.
2009 Fun Stats:
- Hawaii first quarter scoring: 102 – Hawaii third quarter scoring: 26
- Fourth Down Conversions: Opponents 15-of-21 (71%) – Hawaii 2-of-17 (12%)
- Red Zone Scores: Opponents 49-of-55 (89%) – Hawaii 35-of-57 (61%)
- 2010 Hawaii Preview |
2010 Hawaii Defense |
Hawaii Depth Chart
- Hawaii Previews