Contrast is what the University of Hawaii Warriors will be witnesses to when they compete in their second game of the college football season. Hawaii will host the Cardinals of Lamar University who will be traveling some 4,000 miles from Beaumont, in southeastern Texas, to play at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu - the game will be on September 15th and the kickoff time is still to be determined.
Home against FCS opponent
Hawaii will have two weeks off to lick their wounds after starting the season on September 1st in Los Angeles before a national television audience (on FOX) against the presumptive #1 team in the country, USC Trojans (see related articles). It's said that a football team improves the most from its first to second game. But what can the Warriors learn from playing against a highly talented team like USC that could possibly help them against a team that wasn't even playing football three years ago (source - Statesman). Lamar is a Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) school that has two losing seasons in their first two years.
That's contrast - playing the #1 team in the country on the road compared with a home game against a team that isn't even a Football Bowl Subdivision school.
The Cardinals goal in 2012 is to make the FCS playoffs - a fairly lofty goal considering how young the program is. But they were only 4-7 (losing six of their last seven ballgames) a season ago; plus, they've lost their quarterback to graduation. Not exactly a lot to build on for a fledgling football squad.
The Warriors will need this game as a tune-up in preparation for the following week's Mountain West Conference opener against the Nevada Wolf Pack. After Nevada, Hawaii sets sail on one of their long two week road trips.
Time for offense
The Warriors have had a history of scheduling an FCS opponent or two a year at Aloha Stadium with the idea it gives the team an opportunity to work on things they might not be able to do against much tougher challengers. For instance, the Hawaii offense will be working out the kinks with their new pro-set alignment and plays, plus considering Lamar allowed almost 40 points a game last season (source - Sports Illustrated); this would be an excellent time for the men of Manoa to smooth out the rough edges while gaining poise and confidence.
The Warriors shouldn't have a problem with this contest and when you add the substantial amount of traveling the Cardinals will have to endure, it would be likely Lamar would have a hard time getting much going on either side of the ball. Hence, Hawaii should win handily by three or more touchdowns - this is a game the Warriors should and must win (see related articles).
As mentioned before, up next for Hawaii will be their first conference game ever in the Mountain West against Nevada - another team who also will be debuting in the conference - both are former Western Athletic Conference foes. After that, the Warriors hit the road.
2012 appears it will have quite the contrasts and looks interesting to say the least.
Sources - University of Hawaii, Lamar University
Through thick and thin, Daryle has been a huge fan of Hawaii, visiting there as a second home for over 40 years. Go 'Bows!
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