What to expect in the season opener

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CoachKen
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What to expect in the season opener

#1 Post by CoachKen » Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:37 am

We are up against Goliath, but David was able to make a few strategic moves...can Hawaii do the same?

This game will not be like Alabama two years ago. That was a very average Alabama team and this is a very good Gator team. The odds are stacked against us. Can we perform? The answer is yes but we have to do a lot of things for this first game.

What will Florida do offensively?

1. They want Tebow on the sidelines for the second half so they will be trying to put up a lot of points early. They have more offensive weapons than the US nuclear arsenal. If you think you have seen speed...well fasten your seat built! I don't think I have seen a collegiate player faster than Harvin and there is lots to go with him. They desperately want to establish a running game early in the season and we will be the test. I feel good about this. If they have to throw often we will have to put pressure on Tebow to have a chance.

What will they do defensively?

Simple...become Georgia! Expect Charley Strong's defensive unit to come fast and hard. Only problem? This is not June Jone's Warriors. Ron Lee is a strong believer in a solid running game that grinds you. He likes bigger backs but for my money, I'll put my faith in Daniel Libre, he is a dynamo. We have better running threats at the QB postion so I actually like our chances better against the Gators than the Bulldogs at the Sugar Bowl.

Changes in our offense

1. We will play alot more players on offense than every before, not just for the opener but for the whole season. Don't look for any 1,000 yard receivers but look for a lot of 400 to 500 yard receivers. Will the offensive line rotate...hard to say, it is more difficult here but at Florida we will have to or they will not have enough emergency vehicles. Look for six to eight WRs playing per game and four running backs.
2. As we all know, a lot more under center. Contrary to popular belief, it is easier to read the defense under center because you never have to take your eyes off them! It also dramatically enhances the running game which should open up the short passing lanes more easily.
3. Don't look for the big plays, more like a slow cancer that eats the defense.
4. Biggest key? Eliminate turnovers and drops. Florida is too good, you can't make mistakes. We made too many last year and it almost cost us several times. Second biggest key is stop the rush. Standout player in this game offensively? Greg Salas.

Changes in our defense

I will go ahead and say this...I think it will be the best defense in Warrior history. They know Coach Mack's system and they play with heart. What to look for at Florida:

1. An attacking, swarming defense that gang tackles and makes big plays.....with emotion! Defense is controlled aggression. Coach Mack will have the right schemes. We need to gang tackle their speed players and let a few of them know that they have been hit. One or two devastating hits and you take the offenses emotion out of the game.
2. Multiple looks up front to confuse blocking schemes. Florida is big up front but we are quicker. You cannot get into a one on one match with their offensive line and win.
3. We have to get to Tebow. Not an easy task. These guys love him like Santa Claus and take pride in not letting the rush get to him. Teams that have been able to have beaten Florida.
4. Keep their speed players out of open space. We have to close fast when a catch is made or we are in serious trouble. We will play a mixture of coverages to help.
5. Our corners are going to have the toughest job on the defense. With that being said, I like two things...Davis and Mouton. Davis is a very physical corner who will not be bullied by Florida and Mouton is simply a superb athlete who can stay with Florida receivers. We will need help up top. Teams who have manned up with safeties over the top have done well against the Gators.

One of the biggest factors? The weather. You have never felt heat until you experience heat in the interior of Florida in the summer. The stadium effectively blocks the wind, the field temperature is about 20 degrees hotter than what the weather man says (115 degrees plus) and if they say 75% humidity, field humidity will be close to 85% and higher. Most showers don't occur until late afternoon. I worked Rick out in the heat of the day all summer and it took two weeks to adjust and was never easy. The great equalizer? An early cool front or rain!

Go Warriors and remember two words....Appalachian State! "Where there is belief and the will to win, the impossible becomes probable!"

CoachKen
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#2 Post by bowfan » Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:41 am

I'm interested to see if Harvin is 100% after coming off of foot surgery.

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#3 Post by LoneWarrior » Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:59 am

Great post, hope we can hang with the Gators. Who will be the starters at saftey for Hawaii?

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#4 Post by Waryor » Sun Jul 13, 2008 11:27 am

july is always pretty boring time of the year for sports... so thanks coach ken for the post.

i finally got over my grief from the sugar bowl loss. it took six months to get over it, but i was finally able to watch my recording of the game today. just finished watching.

after watching the replay, one positive i took from the game, is that the defense didn't play all THAT bad and they never gave up even after been down by so many points. sure, georgia scored 41 points on us, but one td was a fumble recovery in the endzone and considering the offense had 6 turnovers... defense, really didn't do that bad. the score could have been so much worse.

but no excuses, the bottom line is that georgia was just physically superior. bigger, faster athletes. i suspect florida will be the same, so i have no delusions that we can beat florida.

the sugarbowl game gave me hope that the defense will keep us in most games this year. i will be happy if we can keep florida to under 4 tds in the game. i think that is doable. keeping florida to 24-27 points would be just outstanding. but that would mean hawaii would need to score maybe 30 points or more to have any chance of winning. i just don't see that happening.

i don't expect hawaii to win. i'll be happy if we can keep it close and not get embarrassed. i think a close game will garner us some respect. and a loss would not be the end of the world for the team. i think we have an excellent chance to win the wac again. i think we can beat oregon st on the road. i'm confident we can beat cincy and washington st at home. so regardless of what happens against florida. i am looking forward to an exciting year with the rainbow warriors!

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#5 Post by FloridaWarrior » Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:04 pm

CoachKen said : "I will go ahead and say this...I think it will be the best defense in Warrior history. "

I Believe you are right about this CoachKen and i second that emotion!
Hawaii Warriors...A living Tradition

FloridaWarrior out...

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#6 Post by CoachKen » Sun Jul 13, 2008 2:00 pm

FloridaWarrior,

You are the man! My hope is that the Gators think this defense will not measure up to what they are use to and be put in a state of shock the first two or three series. I left one thing out of our post...we need to create turnovers on defense. If we can end up the day with turnovers and penalties in our favor, we can make a game of it. We will need plus three in our favor.
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#7 Post by Grinch » Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:46 pm

Welcome back to you, too, Coach.
Thanks for the early Gator v. Warrior analysis. I've always said that the Warriors could play with any team in the nation - but, the ones I'd worry about were Florida, Georgia, and Miami (back when the Canes were dominant). They bring athleticism, speed, and more speed.

I'm just glad the Warriors' strength should be there D this season.
QUESTION: As a coach, what would you have done differently going into the Georgia game last year to make it a game? It seemed that Georgia knew EVERYTHING the Warriors were gonna do before hand (along with their DEs going one-on-one with our offensive tackles).
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#8 Post by CoachKen » Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:00 pm

We were far better prepared defensively than we were offensively in the Sugar Bowl. It was difficult from the shotgun to make all the adjustments necessary, but when the ends are causing that much trouble, normally you would run a quick screen to the outside either with the back or with a slot in motion. I also don't understand why we could not run under the rush. I think once Colt took that heavy shot we were in trouble psychologically. The bright spot to me was Tyler's refusal to be intimidated by the Georgia defense. He showed a lot of guts!
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#9 Post by Poopsnorkeler » Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:57 pm

Welcome back, CoachKen!

I have to agree with you. Although I haven't always been fond of Tyler, the drive and determination he demonstrated in the Sugar Bowl showed loads of great character within him. I would not be disappointed if he won the QB battle.

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#10 Post by xer 21 » Sun Jul 13, 2008 8:11 pm

and the return of Coach ken to the football forum officially signals the impending season. and by far the deepest look into the game that anyone with good Fball knowledge has done. every mag or publicationpretty much skipped to the next game.
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#11 Post by Grinch » Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:45 pm

COACH KEN wrote: "We were far better prepared defensively than we were offensively in the Sugar Bowl. It was difficult from the shotgun to make all the adjustments necessary, but when the ends are causing that much trouble, normally you would run a quick screen to the outside either with the back or with a slot in motion. I also don't understand why we could not run under the rush. I think once Colt took that heavy shot we were in trouble psychologically."

Comment: That's what I was wondering - with the DEnds pinning their ears back on every play, why not run under the rush, OR put a big slot (like we did with Reagan Mauia who destroyed ends and linebackers. I'll bet they were waiting for the quick screens and were willing to let the Warrior offense RUN to win.

But, here's to Graunke/Funaki & Company 08.
"The rise . . . of the Warriors."

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#12 Post by HawaiianHogster » Sun Jul 13, 2008 10:06 pm

Thanks CoachKen. I do believe our defense will be the best ever. I also believe our offense is going to make some teams head spin. For some reason I have this hunch that Coach Lee has the ability to teach our offense to be unpredictable and very efficient at what they do. New plays take time to perfect but I believe Coach Lee will get them there quickly.

I hope we see Pilares getting a chance to run the ball. He's so smooth and graceful when he has the ball. He reminds me of deer running through the woods. A natural. Maybe the slot position will allow him to showcase his talents.

We are the underdogs for sure. We have nothing to lose. Win or lose we leave Florida knowing we did our best. It will get us ready for the rest of the season. Come time to play in conference we should have most of our kinks worked out. Getting this kind of experience at the beginning of the year is priceless.
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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#13 Post by Kobayashi » Mon Jul 14, 2008 5:37 am

CoachKen, is Hawaii going to employ the same cooling system that helped us greatly against Alabama in '06?

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#14 Post by CoachKen » Mon Jul 14, 2008 6:38 am

Don't know at this point. Talked with one of the coaches briefly about it. Will know more when I am on the island in August.

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Re: What to expect in the season opener

#15 Post by Kobayashi » Mon Jul 14, 2008 8:34 am

CoachKen wrote:Don't know at this point. Talked with one of the coaches briefly about it. Will know more when I am on the island in August.

Coach
Man I hope so! It was fairly apparent in the 4th quarter of the Alabama game that Hawaii had more gas in the tank than Bama did.

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