Bulldog Game Day Fresno State Bulldogs – vs Hawaii Warriors
After coming off a solid road win against New Mexico, the Bulldogs will return home to face their rival, Hawaii.
Playing its 200th game in Bulldog Stadium, Fresno State will try to continue its season-long success at home. Jim Sweeney Field has definitely been kind to the ’Dogs as they have averaged 50 points per game. The Bulldogs have also defeated their opponents by an average margin of 30.5 points.
Solid in all three phases of the game, Fresno State brings a strong offense complemented by a ferocious defense. The special teams also adds a second dimension to the attacking scheme as it has scored on a 78-yard punt return in the game against Wyoming on Oct. 20.
Fresno State will look to break the current series streak in which the visiting team has won the past four games. The Bulldogs have a strong chance at doing this if they have both their offense and defense rolling together.
Quarterback Derek Carr, who is having a masterful season. leads all players in the Mountain West Conference with 2,766 passing yards while averaging 307.3 per game.
With Carr at the helm, Fresno State has a dynamic passing game that is led by redshirt freshman receiver Davante Adams. He also leads the Mountain West with 814 reception yards and nine touchdowns.
If the Bulldogs hope to continue to be perfect at home, the offense should stick to its explosive passing game. In addition, the Fresno State defense will look to expose Hawaii’s weak passing game by grabbing an interception or two.
Entering the 2012 season under first-year head coach Norm Chow, Hawaii seemingly had much to be excited about.
However, the Warriors season has not gone as expected. With 30-point losses in four of the six defeats they’ve suffered, the Warriors will look to salvage their season with a win at Bulldog Stadium.
Part of the Warriors’ problems has been that they lack a dominant run game.
Their primary running back Will Gregory has only 560 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Hawaii’s passing attack is not much better as quarterback Sean Schroeder has passed for 1,284 yards on 126 completions and nine touchdowns. Schroeder’s quarterback rating is only 101.0 as he has played in only seven games.
Defensively, Hawaii allows a massive amount of points for opposing offenses. Ranking 121st overall, the Warriors give up an average of 42.3 points per game. This flaw could be a major factor in deciding the outcome of the game as the ’Dogs have been dominant at home.
Hawaii’s defense is led by senior defensive lineman Paipal Falemalu. He has 20 solo tackles and 5.5 of them have been for a loss. Falemalu also has three sacks and two fumble recoveries. As a whole, the Warriors’ defense has 10 takeaways on the season.
If Hawaii hopes to avoid another embarrassing loss, it will need to find a way to stretch the Bulldogs’ secondary with the run game. By punching holes in Fresno State’s defensive line, the Warriors can open up their passing game. In addition, if Hawaii can limit the Bulldogs’ ability to create turnovers, the Warriors have a strong chance to claim their second win of the season.