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Talk to me Warriors: Boise State vs Hawaii preview

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Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Game facts

  • Time: Saturday, 5pm MT
  • Location: Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, HI
  • Weather at kickoff: 80°, partly cloudy
  • Odds: Boise State by 17.5
  • TV: CBS Sports Network
  • Radio: KBOI 670 AM
  • Commentators: Rich "Get Richer" Waltz, Adam "Archie" Archuleta, Cassie "I'm drawing a blank" McKinney (same crew as Wyoming so panic right now)

Other facts

1. Rolo: Twitter king

Nick Rolovich, former Warrior signal-caller and first-year coach of the Warriors has a tough task rebuilding the Hawaii brand in the wake of Norm Chow's comatose offense...but at least he's changing Twitter for the better as he's already become a must-follow for fans of self-deprecation and MWC levity. Whether he's interacting with fake coaches, subtweeting fans, or smack-talking baseball fans (Cubs won) he's bringing some personality back to the islands and I for one commend him for it.

2. Bowl possibilities

The Warriors sit at 4-6 on the season, but have shown some serious improvement from a year ago. Sure, they got beat down by the defending champ Aztecs (puke) last week, but they've largely been game this year and can become bowl eligible with a couple more wins. The path to a bowl game is getting a tad narrow (and has lava on both sides) but they'll definitely be motivated this weekend, so the Broncos should be wary.

3. What can Brown do for you?

Well, what can Brown do for them at any rate. Ikaika Woolsey started the season as the Warrior signal-caller...and actually looked pretty solid against the Cal Bears...but started to loosen his grip on the role by week 4 and ceded the job to Dru Brown starting with Nevada. Brown—a sophomore—has shown some impressive flashes (and not the kind that get you put in a database) during his time under center and has passed for over 1,500 yards and 9 TDs. Those good-not-great passing stats are one thing...but he's a capable enough runner to make BSU fans sweat as they've watched the Broncos struggle a bit the last two weeks with QBs who stubbornly refuse to stay in the pocket. Just let David Moa sack you! Geez!

4. Eat your vegetables or else

Vili

Streaks

Boise State - Won 1

Hawaii - Lost 2

Haleakalā

haleakala

Best name on their roster

Hawaii has fantastic names up and down the roster but senior DL Makani Kema-Kaleiwahea might win the syllable award

Best player picture on their roster

Hawaiian Abe Lincoln (John Wa'a) would like a word

wa'a

Players to watch

Dru Brown

The sophomore signal-caller has been a mixed-bag...but has shown to be a more consistent playmaker than his predecessor Ikaika Woolsey. Since firmly taking the reins in game 5, Brown is 3-3 and has tossed more TDs (9) than INTs (6)...and also shows escapability in the pocket, which may have Andy Avalos mopping forehead sweat.

Marcus Kemp

Quick: who has more receiving yards, Marcus Kemp or Thomas Sperbeck? The answer will SHOCK you. Yes friends, Warrior senior wideout Marcus Kemp has more receiving yards on the year than the venerable Thomas Sperbeck...by a single yard (910 to 909) and you can't blame it on the fact that Hawaii has played one extra game—he's reached his total on 2 less receptions. So based on the Sperbeck baseline, it's safe to say that Kemp is a major receiving threat for the Warriors...the difference is he doesn't have a Cedrick Wilson lined up opposite him.

Diocemy Saint Juste

Saint Juste isn't a coastal village in the South-of-France or the capital of Haiti...he's a junior running back for the Warriors that gets the bulk of their carries. Saint Juste isn't utilized a ton, but he makes the most of his touches...he's averaging 5.8 yards per carry—the same stat line that Boise State's Alexander Mattison currently owns.

Rigoberto Sanchez

The senior placekicker isn't perfect, but he's...oh wait, what? He IS perfect? I stand corrected. Sanchez hasn't missed a kick or a PAT all year long, so if the Warriors get close enough (his season long was 55 yards), he's not likely to miss. That is, of course, unless David Moa gets his mitts on it.

Players NOT to watch

Defensive lineman Kennedy Tulimasealii was an All-MWC first teamer last season, but couldn't keep his nose clean and was dismissed in June after he was charged with resisting arrest, harassment and two counts of assault in the third degree. Oopsie daisy.

Keys to victory

  • Win the turnover battle. The Broncos still are not generating a lot of turnovers and have had a much tougher time closing out games when on the negative side of this stat. Thankfully, Hawaii has also been deficient in this regard so, hooray for mediocrity!
  • Field position. When the Broncos lost to Wyoming two weeks ago, their starting field position was, on average, at their own 16 yard line. That's not good.
  • Pour it on. Hawaii will be playing at home and with years of revenge on their minds. The Broncos need to jump on them early and not let up. The first part hasn't been difficult this year, the latter has.
  • Don't lose. Has worked 8 times out of 9.

Score prediction

Boise State 38, Hawaii 17