Hawaii Football: First Look At The 2023 Schedule

Hawaii Football: First Look At The 2023 Schedule


Hawaii Football: First Look At The 2023 Schedule


Hawaii Football: First Look At The 2023 Schedule

The Warriors outperformed expectations in the first year of the Timmy Chang era. Can their 2023 schedule enable them to do it again?

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The braddahhood looks to make strides.

The Mountain West released its full conference football schedule earlier this month, giving the Hawaii Warriors a complete picture of what they’ll have to do to improve in year two under head coach Timmy Chang.

Here’s what the week-by-week schedule looks like with Bill Connelly’s preseason SP+ rankings, where Hawaii is 131st overall, in parentheses:

Saturday, August 26 – at Vanderbilt (71)
Friday, September 1 – vs. Stanford (102)
Saturday, September 9 – vs. Albany (57th among FCS teams)
Saturday, September 16 – at Oregon (8)
Saturday, September 23 – vs. New Mexico State (121)
Saturday, September 30 – at UNLV (108)
Saturday, October 14 – vs. San Diego State (80)
Saturday, October 21 – at New Mexico (132)
Saturday, October 28 – vs. San Jose State (103)
Saturday, November 4 – at Nevada (107)
Saturday, November 11 – vs. Air Force (77)
Saturday, November 18 – at Wyoming (101)
Saturday, November 25 – vs. Colorado State (119)

What are the biggest initial takeaways?

1. Home turf could reverse last year’s fortunes.

After opening conference play on the road in Las Vegas, Hawaii will get a chance to exact revenge against both San Diego State and San Jose State in October. The Warriors lost a heartbreaker to the Aztecs and dropped the season finale to the Spartans, but it’s worth noting they had much more success at the T.C. Ching Complex than elsewhere, posting a 3-4 record at home.

2. There are winnable midseason games on the road, but are those still a big “if”?

The Warriors haven’t broken even on the road since 2019, the year they won the West division and made their first appearance in the Mountain West championship game. Their best chances to get back to .500 away from the islands land smack-dab in the middle of their conference schedule, when they’ll head to New Mexico in late October and follow that with a trip to Nevada two weeks later. Both the Lobos and Wolf Pack are in substantial rebuilds over their own, so both will serve as useful measuring sticks of how much progress Timmy Chang’s team can make this fall.

3. A rivalry renewed late in the year.

Owing to the schedule quirks brought around by the shortened 2020 season and the new division-less schedule rotation, Hawaii will vie for the Paniolo Trophy against Wyoming for the fourth straight season. It’s an unusual and fun bit of connectivity between programs separated by over 3,000 miles, but the trip to Laramie might be the most difficult road trip the Warriors must make in conference play this year. That it comes last, following a home clash with Air Force, means they won’t be able to let up down the stretch.

Hardest stretch: vs. Air Force, at Wyoming, vs. Colorado State

Easiest stretch: at New Mexico, vs. San Jose State

Guaranteed wins: vs. Albany

Guaranteed losses: at Vanderbilt, at Oregon

Worse than 50/50 games: vs. San Diego State, vs. Air Force, at Wyoming

50/50 games: vs. New Mexico State, at UNLV, vs. Stanford, vs. San Jose State, vs. Colorado State

Better than 50/50 games: at New Mexico, at Nevada

Preliminary projected record: 5-8



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