Hawaii vs Nevada: Keys to a Warriors Win, How to Watch, Odds, Prediction
Can the Warriors make it three in a row vs. the Wolf Pack?
Hawaii looking to keep it up against Nevada
This week the Warriors travel to Reno to take on the Nevada Wolf Pack (4-1). Nevada is coming off a 55-28 thrashing of honorary 2021 Mountain West member New Mexico State. Quarterback Carson Strong threw for 377 yards and 6 touchdowns in 3 quarters of action. Wide Receiver Romeo Doubs sat out last week with a lower body injury but it sounds like he is probable for this week’s match up.
In last season’s game, the Warriors slowed down a red hot Nevada Passing attack en route to a 24-21 victory. Coming into that game Nevada was undefeated and Carson Strong and Romeo Doubs were among the national leaders in passing and receiving categories. The Warriors held Strong to just 168 yards through the air and Doubs had his worst game of the season with just one catch for ten yards.
They will need to do the same on Saturday. It’s not all about Strong and Doubs in the passing game. Cole Turner is the best tight end in the conference and at 6’6” he is a problem in the red zone. Melquan Stovall, the younger brother of former Warrior Melquise Stovall is coming off a 7 catch 155-yard performance against NMSU.
WEEK 5: Nevada (4-0, 1-1) vs. Hawaii (3-3, 1-1)
WHEN: Saturday, October 16 — 10:30 p.m. ET
WHERE: Mackay Stadium; Reno, Nevada
TV: CBS Sports Network
STREAMING: Fans can sign up to receive a free one-week trial of Fubo, which includes CBSSN, by following this link.
ODDS (via Vegas Insider): Nevada -14.5
The Wolf Pack also have a strong running game. In their 2020 match-up, Nevada turned to Toa Taua who rushed for 131 yards on 20 carries, and Devonte Lee who chipped in 81 yards on 14 carries to carry the load offensively.
The defensive staff had the perfect game plan and the players executed it against Fresno State and I have faith that they can replicate that against Nevada on Saturday.
This defense tends to fare better against the spread offenses like Nevada and Fresno State than they do against the power run teams like Wyoming, Boise State and San Diego State. Just like last week, the keys to victory on defense will be to bend but don’t break and be opportunistic. The talented Nevada offense will move the ball, but Hawaii just needs to pick its spots and make game-changing plays like they did against Fresno State.
All reports sound like Chevan Cordeiro will be available to play on Saturday but Todd Graham did mention that both Quarterbacks (Cordeiro and Brayden Schager) are likely to see time. It will be interesting to see what the timeshare will be like. Will Cordeiro get the start and play until the offense falters and then will he be pulled for Brayden Schager? Or is there a plan to get both of them reps early in the game and see who has the hot hand? Either way, it gives the Nevada defensive staff a little more to think about when preparing this week.
Against Fresno State Brayden Schager had the offense moving early in the game, but it stalled during the second and third quarters only to come back alive in the fourth quarter. The difference was the play selection. In the second and third quarters, the offense went back to the usual playscript of inside zone, followed by another inside zone and then an incompletion on a deep fade attempt on third and long.
This is not a recipe for success. The offense moves the ball best when they use short quick passes, drag routes and mixing in the run game with play-action to keep the defense on their heels. Playcalling is what it has come down to all season for the Bows offensively and that is the offensive key to the game. If the play calling is on point and unpredictable the offense has been successful. I hope to see the Bows play to whichever quarterback is on the field’s strengths. If Cordeiro is out there, let’s move him around and use his mobility. If it is Schager, let’s scheme up some plays that he can process quickly and get the ball out to our playmakers.
This Saturday against the Nevada Wolf Pack will be a great test to see if the Bows have turned a corner on this season. Will they replicate their performance from two weeks ago? Road Warriors come out and play. Let’s go Bows!