Warrior Beat: Running theme

The (re-)emphasis will be on tackling in the Warriors' home stretch of the regular season. / Photo by Stephen Tsai

This season, the Warriors have had uneven results in defending the run. Against the triple-option, they yielded 326 rushing yards to Navy and 303 to Army. But they also dominated Duquesne (24 rushing yards) and San Jose State (39). Playing what Nick Rolovich referred to as “big-boy football,” BYU amassed 280 rushing yards.

In the first eight games:
• Colorado State — 116 rushing yards, 4.64 yards per carry
• Navy — 326 yards, 6.65 ypc
• Rice — 147 yards, 3.77 ypc
• Army — 303 yards, 4.59 ypc
• Duquesne — 24 yards, 0.89 ypc
• San Jose State — 39 yards, 1.05 ypc
• Wyoming — 157 yards, 4.62 ypc
• BYU — 280 yards, 5.96 ypc

The next five opponents:
• Nevada — 151.3 rushing yards per game, 4.69 per carry, 5.62 on first down
• Fresno State — 132.7 ypg, 3.70 ypc, 3.17 yards on first down
• Utah State — 198.7 ypg, 5.49 ypc, 5.61 on first down
• UNLV — 257.2 ypg, 5.38 ypc, 5.99 on first down
• San Diego State — 171.8 ypg, 4.04 ypc, 4.12 on first down


  1. tom-warriornation October 15, 2018 8:41 am

    GO Warriors!

    Join our Facebook group Hawaii Football Warrior Nation with over 3200 members!

  2. Warrior Dave October 15, 2018 8:47 am

    Time to reboot Warriors! Hope they have a great week of practice and they come out ready in Saturday.

  3. Andrew October 15, 2018 9:00 am

    That sounds about right. The defense does horribly against teams with a decent running game. I’d be interested to hear the explanation on call the coach tonight on some of the play calling from saturday. It seemed that there were too many run plays on 3rd down when the run game was not working. Also I thought they abandoned the hurry up no huddle with 5 wides strategy a little too early. That seemed to be the times when we would actually drive the ball down field.

  4. haka October 15, 2018 9:26 am

    Always disappointing to lose, but let’s keep things in perspective. It’s nice to have high hopes and even expectations to win, but we were a decided underdog in this game and Provo, as history shows, is always a big Wasatch mountain to climb.

    We all really wanted a win, but we were all wringing our hands even before the game started. We knew it would be tough and it was. The good news is that there is a home game this week! Another chance to play. Another chance to get together. Another chance to get a victory. Were still in the conference title hunt. We are still in the bowl hunt. We are still in the hunt to have a “successful” season. This week, we are hunting the wolf pack. Start the grill.

    Go Warriors!

  5. Rodney October 15, 2018 9:32 am

    The offense and special teams could help out the defense. Offense play calling needs work.
    Our identity is confusing… we run n shoot/ pistol/RPO….. Defense just needs work the basics
    Would love to see Ohio st play Alabama for the National championship!!!!!!

  6. iGrokSpock October 15, 2018 10:01 am

    Always disappointing to lose to BYU. Even the BYU student sections put UH students to shame.

  7. Savich October 15, 2018 10:29 am

    Go Warriors.

    A win versus Nevada will clinch the Hawai’i Bowl.

  8. Derek October 15, 2018 10:52 am

    We are what we think we are! Our defense just isn’t good enough to hold down good offensive teams. We have not won a game yet, this season against a winning team. The 6 games we won were against losing teams or .500 teams. I thought UH would give up a better fight against BYU, but couldn’t get them off the field. If the coaches don’t come up with a better game plan and scheme to help the players do better we can easily lose the last 5 games on the schedule and end up 6-7 and NOT be bowl eligible. That’s a fact. Every opponent now can move the ball and can beat UH very easily. On paper, the best chance to win a game, or two, is this week against Nevada at home and against UNLV, also at home. We will be double digit underdogs against Utah State, Fresno St., and San Diego St. That said, the onus is on the UH offense. We have to outscore teams to have a chance to win. That was the case at Colorado St. and against Navy. We didn’t score enough points against Army which we could have easily won. And we surely didn’t score enough against BYU. We won against Wyoming because Wyoming does not score a lot of points and we scored just enough to narrowly get by. What we need are more explosive plays, 20+ yard plays, and cash in often and early. The next 5 games will be all high scoring affairs. We have to score at least close to 40 points to win and even that may not be enough. But, it will be interesting to see.

  9. Masaboy October 15, 2018 10:57 am

    UH for some reason always has trouble with True Freshmen Quarterbacks making their first start. The last 5 games will truly determine how good this team is considering their best start since 2007. Hope they can work out the kinks and learn from this loss.

  10. bg October 15, 2018 11:21 am

    Aloha all

    I believe this comment is attributed to Larry Price, “Physical superiority cancels all strategy…” That’s what I saw on Sat. BYU scored quickly and pressured our offense to respond. They mainly rushed 3 with that gigantic preying mantis watching the middle for Cole’s runs. Good Lord! Kaufentsis was long and agile! They blitzed occasionally to change things up and tried to re-route our wr’s to mess up the timing. And they were very successful. Their offense ran the ball down our throats (actually off-tackle and the ends) and kept the ball away from the offense.

    I was happy to see the offense adjust to the short, ball-control passes and runs for 1st downs. When defenses do what they’ve done for the past 3 and a half games, we need to do what’s been talked about….”take what they give you”. We even had a fairly successful qb draw. That’s not a bad strategy to keep our defense off the field.

    I was also proud to see the team not give up and they all played hard through-out the game. That’s not easy to do at altitude while getting beat like a drum. Kudos to the guys!

    Nevada is tough with QB Gangi back.

    Backing the Warriors through good times and bad….

  11. Da Punchbowl Kid October 15, 2018 11:34 am

    Shore up the defense, tweak the offense to adjust to defensive schemes. Warriors need to come out firing on all cylinders and play four good quarters on both sides of the ball. This is doable, and Warriors are capable.


  12. burro sabio October 15, 2018 11:54 am

    I like how people express their opinion and state that it is a fact.

  13. Music Man October 15, 2018 12:27 pm

    I’m gathering from this post, A lot of you are only giving Hawaii maybe 2 wins over the next 5 games? Of course no wins are guaranteed but 1 game at a time. I firmly believe if the coaches can have a good strategy for each game and for each team they face, they are “ALL WINNABLE GAMES” with a 20% improvement on defense!

    Cory Batoone, I challenge you to keep our 5 remaining opponents under 24 points a game!!!!!!! Attainable, Warriors go 11wins, 2 losses. Cory, you’ve got your assignment and work cut out for you. So far this season your grade is C-……..Get it up to a B+

  14. War heavy October 15, 2018 12:35 pm

    Support our team we only had 3 wins last season be happy

  15. Stephen Tsai October 15, 2018 12:48 pm

    It does seem that historically UH struggles against QBs making their first career starts. Then again, the week after, when there’s actual game video, that QB usually doesn’t do as well.

  16. SteveM October 15, 2018 1:47 pm

    Here’s my last thoughts on BYU. turfwar posted:

    turfwar October 14, 2018 8:29 pm
    Forgot who but radio or tv broadcast mentioned that the bowl committed to BYU was discontinuing so ESPN had agreed to place them in next year’s Hawaii Bowl which means if both teams are bowl bound they will probably meet again next year. And with both offenses very young it could mean we meet again for at least a couple of years.

    Is this true?
    If so, it would be great for the Hawaii Bowl. The BYU fans will buy tickets and the UH fans would buy tickets to cheer for the other guys if UH was not playing. Even the mauka sideline seats would fill up for the day game!

  17. NorthShoreFan October 15, 2018 1:50 pm

    bg…stated as a true Tsaiko Warrior.

  18. Old School Dave October 15, 2018 2:17 pm

    People complaining about UH being 6-2, when the same folks were predicting 2-6 at this time prior to the season. Whatevahs!

    Need to get back to work and come up with the necessary schemes to beat Nevada. Must come up with more than “We have to work harder” like the previous coach. It’ll be a dogfight, as will all of the remaining games (MWC). USU looks scary, but UH “CAN DO IT!” People complaining about UH being 6-2, when the same folks were predicting 2-6 at this time prior to the season.

    BTW, USU’s weight room is double the size of UH’s (over 20,000 sq ft). How about knocking down Klum Gym or rebuilding it by adding additional floors that house a strength and conditioning center?

    The State plan to build a new stadium will take too long to fruition as it includes housing and a shopping center. Better to simply build a 40,000 seat stadium on campus (37,000 seats, with another 3,000 who can watch from luxury suites). Make a stadium that is ADA compliant and “Makule Friendly” with outdoor suites, too. You will have 7 days out of the year when the streets will be congested, but with proper traffic control and planning, it can be done. Off the soapbox.

  19. oldtimer808 October 15, 2018 3:11 pm

    I think more than likely a well attended program with an on campus stadium is the way to go. I was hoping that Rolo would be more aggressive with the run and shoot. It is not a pure run and shoot so the rhythm seems to be off the last few games with some of his non aggressive play calling. As far as our win/loss record, I am excited for the team and hopefully our team finishes with a bang.

  20. cappie the dog October 15, 2018 3:13 pm

    Thank you J.
    Thank you R.

    Support the free press!
    Support your local newspaper!

    I will be a subscriber ’til the end of days.

  21. cappie the dog October 15, 2018 3:17 pm

    Just one more win.

    Good enough for me.

    Given the money we spend on athletics, being where we are right now is impressive, regardless of the strength of schedule.

  22. cappie the dog October 15, 2018 3:21 pm

    Here is a hypothetical scenario:

    If the Mountain West decided to drop Hawaii, which mid-major conference would be more likely to take us on as a member: Sun Belt or MAC?

    These are the sort of things that would drift in my head in the 4th quarter when Hawaii would be playing out the string.

  23. Danny October 15, 2018 3:44 pm

    I hope cole doesn’t regress like how dru brown regressed over time. Something doesn’t seem right on how this team is being coached. Play calling is ridiculous and too conservative at times. Hawaii has 3 good receivers and Cole to go along with them. Cmon now! We’re winning this year because pretty much all the teams we played so far are not as good. Duquesne could’ve scored way more points if they could actually catch better, so that shows where this defense stands. I’d say Hawaii wins 2 more games likely, but the rest is iffy and no way certain. They might pull a win with at least one of those 3 tough ones, but again that’s hard to say.

  24. Stephen Tsai October 15, 2018 3:44 pm

    Interesting hypothetical, but it appears UH is safe from being booted.
    That means many more years of nose bleeds in Laramie, icy roads over the Pass to Logan, and bluegrass music in Boise.

  25. Derek October 15, 2018 4:03 pm

    It’s obvious that the coaches need to really focus on recruiting on getting guys to stop the run. Some scheme suggestions. On fist down, dedicate an extra player to stop the run. DBs play one on one coverage. Alternate CB or Safety blitzes to confuse the offense. Just trying to change up things to get any kind of advantage. Easy for me to say, but I would applaud the team on trying to initiate things than reacting. We want to be the aggressors. Use specific player groupings to excel.

  26. haka October 15, 2018 4:12 pm

    Bluegrass music in Boise…I see you…good one!

  27. Old School Dave October 15, 2018 4:52 pm

    Coaches coach. Players need to execute. Can’t do it if they’re physically challenged or limited. Just saying. The talent level needs to continue to improve, and it will under Rolo and the current coaches. I’m confident that the coaches will find a way to get the job done, as opposed to simply “work harder” as we used to hear. The team needs to get bigger and stronger, no doubt, as BYU demonstrated. This could be a good learning moment.

    Need to keep in mind that this is Hawaii’s team played by 18 to 21 year old student-athletes who are busting their butts out there every day.

  28. suckkabooya October 15, 2018 4:53 pm

    Every game there seems to be a handful of plays where there is over pursuit and a fake or a cutback gained substantial yardage. I think eliminate those and we got a different story here against the run. Now the open field tackling is a different issue. That is same as last year. Block shedding is a lot better than last year though.

  29. SteveM October 15, 2018 6:16 pm

    RE: #15
    Ferd Lewis just confirmed BYU will be automatically invited to the 2019 Hawaii Bowl if eligible and not going to the playoffs…

    …and if Hawaii is bowl eligible and not going elsewhere…

  30. kalua pig October 15, 2018 6:53 pm

    brian smith.

  31. Inyoface October 15, 2018 7:12 pm

    Would like to see chevan in some plays to give the defense a new look.

  32. Inyoface October 15, 2018 7:16 pm

    If Hawaii can win in Fresno and San Diego it will offset this BYU loss.

  33. J-FORCE October 15, 2018 7:59 pm

    We’ll be there on Saturday rooting for our Warriors. Hoping for bigger crowd so we can make llots of noises.
    Go Warriors!

  34. cappie the dog October 15, 2018 9:13 pm


    Useless information.

    Country music made out of Nashville is labeled Americana. Austin is the capital of “alternative” country. Americana artists play bluegrass, or rather, music that can be traced back to Hank Williams and other artists of his ilk. (Hank Williams was so awesome. He was illiterate, an alcoholic, and he would show up at gigs and fall of the stage. But the consistency of his work was staggering. I have his box set. Love “Jambalaya”.) The leading purveyor of Americana is probably Lucinda Williams.

    Industry country music, that is, music made in Nashville, is really pop music sung by a vocalist with an accent. I think the crossover success of Shania Twain is the blame for this. So somebody like Willie Nelson can’t get on mainstream country radio even though HE IS COUNTRY MUSIC. The same went for the late Merle Haggard whose death was overshadowed by Tom Petty.

    There are exceptions though. Kacey Musgraves rolled into town a couple months ago and played before 900 people at The Republik. She is the real deal. Best millennial artist(musicians under the age of 30) that I can think of.

    Rock music hasn’t been at the center of popular culture in 20 years.

  35. Casual Observer October 15, 2018 10:47 pm

    Noticed in the BYU game, the run was almost always away from Tavai. In the upcoming games, we have two potential shoot outs with Nevada and UNLV whose defensive points allowed are just behind UH. Nevada played stout with Boise but also lost to a 1-5 Toledo team earlier in the season. Fresno State appears to be dominant in defense allowing only 81 points thus far and Utah State beat BYU convincingly. So the Warriors are hitting the meat of the schedule so no doubt the defense/coaches has to step up, like in the Wyoming game, to keep the games competitive and a chance to get wins #7, 8, 9 &10.

  36. cappie the dog October 16, 2018 5:17 am

    burro sabio: You just captured the zeitgeist of the times we live you. Lucky you to have lived this long. I am 46.

  37. cappie the dog October 16, 2018 5:17 am


  38. Maddog50 October 16, 2018 6:30 am

    This game is a must win for a lot of reasons. The immediacy should be evident. No time for slow starts and alternating miscues. If you have seen all of our games seen all of theirs and digest the stats it tells you an awful lot. I try not to say anything negative about the other team because they have guys trolling blogs articles etc looking for any edge they may find including bulletin board stuff. This game will be a statement game or should be for the leadership and togetherness of this team. There are 5 games remaining and all of them are against perceived conference contenders including Nevada. It is my opinion this is a reset game with the past being deeply locked away and meaning absolutely nothing-here is hoping the players look at it this way and play like that on Sat! GoWarriors!!!

  39. Andrew October 16, 2018 8:11 am

    No games are gimmies. UH can easily be 6-7 by the end of the season and the season’s narrative changes completely

  40. suckkabooya October 16, 2018 9:46 am

    Just an observation from reviewing the BYU game.

    UH’s receivers took a physical pounding after (and while attempting to) catching the ball. Different from any of the other games so far. I think next year (not able to this year?) if they can mix in “physical” types here and there to counter that. They may be able to wear down the secondary better and create more big plays. You can see where they could just use a bigger body to slow the aggression of the DB’s. A simple curl or a quick out for 5 to 8 yards but with a bigger body in there. It could create more space for the smaller guys as the drive continues. I think that’s the only problem here. There is no “ball control” receiving packages. Hard to throw to this group in tight windows. Corderio figured that out after Wyoming adjusted , so he kept throwing to Armstrong-Brown until he “untightened” the window himself by buying time for Ward. Easy fix (but maybe not this year). I think its better than having the run setting up the “shoot” (the pass should always set up the run in this offense). Especially if they are not afraid of UH’s run game. Up to Stutzmann (or is it Rolovich?)though. He seems “idealistic” in his speedy, talented, but small package.

  41. winning October 16, 2018 10:03 am

    Defense will get better when new guys come in. Offense can be better with better experienced coaching. Right now the O coachng is pathetic. Again As a wise writer once said cannot “COUNTER THE COUNTER”. Confusion leads to give the mango to the Fruit Tree. Poor guy has to carry too much of the load, may as well go back to last year’s O- you know INEFFECTIVE ! People are noticing too that our coaches don’t try to fire up players from time to time-INYO FACE!! WAKE UP !! Bring in Mouse Davis already !!!

  42. suckkabooya October 16, 2018 10:06 am

    BTW Fred Holly is going to be “unreal” next year. You can see it. He has the ability of “quick hitting” an open gap on the RPO. Right now they “jog” through so his running base is “off” (junk), but if they (he and McDonald) can figure out the RPO with him going full speed he is hard to stop. Guarantee 6 to 12 yards. And if McDonald keeps it even more yards possible. They had one like that against Colorado St. and a real good one like that against Navy. The pass has to set up the run though. Going be unbelievable.

  43. winning October 16, 2018 10:15 am

    From what we have evidenced already, UH has 2 winnable games ahead. The O coaches better get their butts in gear ! From the beginning of the season the mantra (do I sound like Norm Chow) was to outscore the other team. As this one buddahead acquaintance d”Itaboto” once said “Go Now Hawaii”

  44. suckkabooya October 16, 2018 10:17 am

    And also BTW Miles Reed going be “unreal” too. Different from Holly. He is more versatile runner that can change direction with the smoothness and “naturalness” of his jump cut (like Darren Sproles), just gotta get him in the open field with scheme. He can catch (kickoff returner) so teach him some basic routes. He needs some touches. We have so many weapons. C’mon Stutzmann.

  45. suckkabooya October 16, 2018 10:35 am

    Quick hit (the hole) with Holly. Jog (read) with Furuta. Run designed runs (no RPO) with Reed. And Dale is the most capable out of all of them to do a little of everything well enough. Use their strengths in the running game. WE (coaches and players) can do it!

  46. suckkabooya October 16, 2018 11:18 am

    Yeah, I think Holly needs to be in pistol every now and then in his RPO (like Wright-Jackson would need to be in order to be effective). Hit the hole quick (and decide quick). The defense has to commit “quick”. If McDonald keeps it would be in effect like play action, opening up the middle of the field over the committed linebackers. And if the DE’s crash the long gain for McDonald. Different with Furuta. he needs to be closer to the line of scrimmage. He can run effectively with or without space.

  47. Stephen Tsai October 16, 2018 11:22 am

    New post: http://www.hawaiiwarriorworld.com/?p=47172

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