Fresno State (6-3, 4-1) vs. Hawaii (1-6, 0-4)
Kickoff: Saturday, 4:00 p.m.
Television: Comcast Sports California, TWSN
Radio: KMJ (AM 580), ESPN Deportes (1600 AM)
Keys to the Game
Stick with the Gameplan – There is no need to get too smart against a Hawaii team that has not beaten an FBS team since last season. The Warriors are struggling, and Fresno State won’t have to do much to win on Saturday.
Be Consistent – When playing a game against an overmatched opponent, historically, the Bulldogs have played down to their opponent, but not this year. This is not the time for the ‘Dogs to have a letdown and fail to have a stellar first half at home.
Run the Ball – The passing game has been the catalyst at home in 2012, however, outside of his career record-breaking game versus Colorado, Robbie Rouse hasn’t taken over a game in Bulldog Stadium. He is one yard away from being the program’s first three-time 1,000-yard rusher, and if given the ball consistently, he could be the program’s first 300-yard single game rusher.
Leave No Doubt – Hawaii hasn’t had much success on offense this season after making the switch to the pro-style offense from the spread. If the Bulldogs are looking to record their first shutout in the Tim DeRuyter era, this looks like the game. No one expects DeRuyter’s ‘Dogs to let up in a conference game, but we have yet to see a complete four quarters from the defense. Fresno State was close to shutting out Colorado State until allowing a touchdown in the final minute. The Bulldogs also have allowed meaningless second half touchdowns in blowout wins in its last two games. We don’t expect the starters to play four quarters, therefore the two’s and three’s need to finish the job.
Limit Penalties – Like stated above, the Warriors will have trouble moving the ball and scoring on Saturday. However, there is no need to give UH some help with costly penalties.
Create – The defense has sparked the team throughout this season. Whether sacks, forced fumbles or interceptions, the defense has found ways to create momentum. Moreover, senior safety Phillip Thomas is one pick-six away from tying the season and career records for interceptions returned for touchdowns. As much as the Warriors throw it, good chance he does it tonight.
This rivalry has quickly turned with Hawaii arguably being one of the worst teams in the FBS this season. Regardless, the Warriors remain one of the most hated rivals on the gridiron. The Bulldogs have only beaten UH once since 2000 in games played inside Bulldog Stadium. The lone win was the 70-14 thrashing in 2004.
Tonight will be very similar.
Fresno State 56, Hawaii 3