New Mexico vs. Hawaii: Three Keys To A Warriors Win
The Warriors will look to get back in the win column by hosting the Lobos. Here’s how Hawaii can do it.
Don’t overlook the Lobos.
WEEK 10: New Mexico Lobos (0-1) vs. Hawaii Warriors (1-1)
WHEN: Saturday, November 7 — 6:00 PM HT/9:00 PM MT
WHERE: Aloha Stadium; Honolulu, HI
TV: Spectrum Pay-Per-View
STREAMING: For fans on the mainland, the game can be streamed using the Team1Sports application, which is available for download on Android and Apple devices and over-the-top platforms like Roku and Amazon Fire. Please note that the game will not be available on desktops or laptops.
RADIO: The Hawaii broadcast can be found on the ESPN Radio affiliate in Honolulu, on 1420 AM and 92.7 FM. The New Mexico broadcast can be found on the affiliates of the Lobo Radio Network, including flagship 770 AM (KKOB) in Albuquerque.
SERIES RECORD: Hawaii leads the series 15-10. In the last meeting on October 26, 2019, the Warriors defeated the Lobos, 45-31, in Albuquerque.
LAST WEEK: Hawaii lost on the road to Wyoming, 31-7. New Mexico lost on the road to San Jose State, 38-21.
ODDS (as of 11/5, via Vegas Insider): Hawaii -16
SP+ PROJECTION: Hawaii by 13.8 (79% win probability)
FEI PROJECTION: Hawaii by 12.6
After a tough loss last Saturday on the road, the Hawaii Warriors are back in action at the friendly confines of Aloha Stadium to take on the New Mexico Lobos this Saturday.
The college football season’s first journey into the night may not have an overwhelming amount of buzz, but Danny Gonzales’s team brings plenty of intrigue to the islands. Despite numerous obstacles big and small at the onset of their campaign, New Mexico looked competitive in a road loss at San Jose State and can’t be overlooked by a Hawaii team that still has designs on getting back into the race to the top of the Mountain West.
Here’s how the Warriors can bounce back and beat New Mexico.
Three Keys to a Hawaii Victory
1. Get off to a fast start.
Though they only trailed 10-0 at the end of the first quarter last week, Hawaii’s performance in the early going against Wyoming was disastrous. Quarterback Chevan Cordeiro fumbled on the first drive, the team had five penalties, and their only completion went for a loss of eight yards. That’s all bad, but it’s hard to imagine it happening again.
Getting Cordeiro in a rhythm early against a defense that allowed seven passing plays of 20-plus yards a week ago could go a long way toward making life easier for the Warriors as the game progresses. The Lobos had to rely on a lot of youngsters in their opener and that may not be the case this time around — juniors Tony Collier and Michael LoVett III are listed as the starters at cornerback now and Nico Bolden is slotted at LOBO — though Hawaii should still have a talent advantage on that front.
2. Keep an eye on Jordan Kress.
After he battled COVID-19 during the offseason, the senior wide receiver received clearance to practice and play and ended up being pretty busy against San Jose State, seeing a team-high nine targets. Offensive coordinator Derek Warehime utilized Kress as a movable chess piece, sending him out wide and putting him in motion to the backfield like a running back, so it seems pretty clear that they’re confident he can continue to make plays.
Keeping an eye on #9 will be important, then, especially since he led the Lobos with eleven catches of 20 or more yards last fall.
3. Get a big game from Kai Kaneshiro.
Following the news that safety Eugene Ford will miss the rest of the 2020 season with injury, the sophomore Kaneshiro could have a much more prominent role in the Warriors’ fortunes going forward. He’s already proven he can be a difference maker, though the worry is that it could be for better and for worse: Kaneshiro had three inceptions in 2019, but he also missed the first half of last week’s loss to Wyoming after being ejected for targeting the week before.
If he can avoid more of those kinds of critical errors, he’ll provide plenty of speed and tackling ability to counter a Lobos wide receiver unit that possesses plenty of its own agility.
This looks like the kind of matchup on paper where both offenses should have the upper hand, which means that it could come down to whichever defense is more likely to create a break for itself. New Mexico didn’t look overmatched in their season opener, but they probably don’t have the horses on that side of the ball to keep Hawaii from getting back on track.
Hawaii 37, New Mexico 24