Hawaii vs. Colorado State: Three Keys To A Rams Win
Colorado State opens in week zero for the second straight year, thanks to a loaded Hawaii schedule.
Can the Rams open with a victory for the second straight year?
WHEN: Saturday, August 25 — 5:30 PM MT/1:30 PM HT
WHERE: Canvas Stadium; Fort Collins, Colorado (41,000)
TV: CBS Sports Network
RADIO: KARS 102.9 FM (Colorado)
The Rams open the season in week zero for the second straight year, this time thanks to a Mountain West scheduling quirk that would’ve had Hawaii playing 13 straight games this year. Colorado State had a similar issue last year, but was able to move the game against Oregon State to week zero to give the Rams a bye.
Three Keys To A CSU Victory
Get The New Starters Up & Running
Colorado State comes into the 2018 season as one of the least experienced teams in the nation. They are tied with Hawaii returning only nine starters. The Rams lost their starting QB, RB, top WR, and the majority of their offensive line from last year.
The Rams do bring some playing experience to those positions though, so it might not be a big drop off. K.J Carta-Samuels has stepped into a leadership role on this team. Izzy Matthews leads the way for the running backs, while Olabisi Johnson and Tennessee transfer Preston Williams lead the way for the Rams. The O-Line rotated last year, so the starters do have playing experience.
Get The Offense Rolling
The Rams offense couldn’t be stopped when it was rolling last season. CSU averaged 33 points per game last season and if they continue that trend the offense should be in good shape. The question is can the new pieces perform to that level. They have the skill, can they put it together?
Head Coach Mike Bobo returned to practice Wednesday, after being admitted to the hospital. He’ll make sure the Rams are fired up and ready to play. With Bobo calling the plays, the offense should be able to click.
Defense Needs To Step Up
The Colorado State defense cost the team a number of games last season. Coach Bobo brought in John Jancek to be the new defensive coordinator and with him, a switch to the 4-3 defense from the 3-4. The shift will allow for the defensive lineman to use their skills to go after the ball instead of plugging gaps for the linebackers.
The Rams recruiting really put an emphasis on the defensive backfield this past year and it looks to be paying off. They’ve gained some height, especially with the return of Braylin Scott from suspension. The CSU staff has said the Rams could play in a dime package (six defensive backs) if necessary. The DB’s will need to step up if the Rams want to improve on defense.