With the offseason now upon us, Washington football news will be scarce until the Huskies return to the practice field in August. So we decided to take a look each week at each of UW’s 2014 opponents, beginning today with Hawaii.
We’ll try to continue this series each Monday until we’ve knocked each of them out. This post also serves as a minor programming note: I’ll be out of town from Tuesday through Saturday — going to Disneyland, in fact — but will return to the blog thereafter. Without further adieu …
WASHINGTON AT HAWAII, Saturday, Aug. 30, 5 p.m. PT (CBS Sports Network)
STADIUM: Aloha Stadium (off-campus, capacity 50,000)
UNIVERSITY LOCATION: Manoa valley in Honolulu, Hawaii (Pop. 390,738 in the city, 953,207 in the metro area, according to Wikipedia)
ENROLLMENT: 20,006 at the flagship Manoa campus (Source)
MASCOT: Hawaii is once again the Rainbow Warriors, a change made in July of 2013 after they spent 13 seasons as just “the Warriors.”
2013 RECORD: 1-11 (0-8 in Mountain West). The Warriors lost their first 11 games before beating Army, 49-42, in the season finale.
COACH: Norm Chow (4-20 entering third season at Hawaii and overall; former offensive coordinator at USC, UCLA and Utah)
RETURNING STARTERS: 17 (7 offense, 6 defense, 4 special teams, according to the school).
KEY RETURNERS: Senior WR Scott Harding (56 catches, 631 yards and 1 TD in 2013; also the team’s punter); senior RB Joey Iosefa (590 yards, 5 TDs); junior OL Ben Clarke (started every game in 2012, 2013); senior DL Beau Yap (second-team All-Mountain West with 37 tackles, 12 TFL and 5.5 sacks)
KEY LOSSES: QB Sean Schroeder (2,960 passing yards, 28 TDs and 14 INTs in 2013), WR Chris Gant (59 catches, 973 yards, 9 TDs); LB Brenden Daley (90 tackles, 13 TFL, 4 sacks); LB Art Laurel (77 tackles; 14.5 TFL, 3 sacks, 1 INT); SS John Hardy-Tuliau (75 tackles, 7.5 TFL, 6 pass break-ups).
2013 STATISTICAL RANKS: 57th in Total Offense (416 ypg); 19th in Passing Offense (301.4); 113th in Rushing Offense (114.6); 115th in Total Defense (494.7); 104th in Rushing Defense (213.6); 116th in Passing Defense (281.1). Here’s the full report, if you’re interested.
BIGGEST 2014 PRIORITY: Settling the quarterback spot, perhaps with senior Taylor Graham, who completed 46 of his 100 pass attempts last season for 462 yards, two touchdowns and five interceptions. Graham, an Ohio State transfer, actually started Hawaii’s first three games in 2013 but was hampered by injuries thereafter. He was limited in spring after undergoing left shoulder surgery, though the Honolulu Star-Advertiser notes that Graham was able to practice some. You’ll also see in that story that Chow has said he wants to extend the quarterback competition into August, when freshman Beau Reilly will be eligible. Sophomore Ikaika Woolsey and senior Jeremy Higgins are also in the mix.
SCHEDULE NOTES: Three of Hawaii’s first four games are against Pac-12 opponents. The Warriors host Washington and Oregon State to start the season, then travel to Colorado in Week 4. Hawaii plays seven home games and 13 games total, its first time playing that many games in a season since 2011.
UW-HAWAII ROSTER TIES: Hawaii has one player on its roster from the state of Washington — Dee Maggitt, a senior cornerback from Lakes High School in Tacoma. Another Lakes star, running back Willis Wilson, played for Hawaii last season after spending three years at UW, but, quite sadly, was found dead of an apparent drowning prior to Hawaii’s season finale. According to Hawaii’s game notes, the Warriors began their first offensive possession that day with only 10 players as a tribute to Wilson. … The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported that former UW safety Taz Stevenson is expected to join Hawaii this summer as a walk-on. … Hawaii running backs coach Wayne Moses played for Washington in the 1970s, then was an assistant at UW from 1997-2000. … UW has four players on its roster who list hometowns in Hawaii — OL Micah Hatchie (Haleiwa), DE Hau’oli Kikaha (Laie), OL Shane Brostek (Kamuela) and DE Psalm Wooching (Kailua-Kona). And walk-on defensive back Brian Clay played his first two years at Hawaii before transferring.
UW-HAWAII HISTORY: Washington holds a 2-2 record against Hawaii, with its most recent victory coming at Husky Stadium in 2011, when the Huskies won 40-32. Hawaii took a memorable 35-28 victory at Aloha Stadium on Dec. 1, 2007, after UW had built a 21-0 lead in the first quarter. Record-breaking quarterback Colt Brennan completed 42 of 50 passes in that game for 442 yards, five touchdowns and no interceptions.
HAWAII’S BEST SEASON: Funny you ask! That win over UW in 2007 clinched an undefeated regular season for the Warriors, who finished 12th in the BCS standings and played Georgia in the Sugar Bowl. They lost, 41-10, but reaching a BCS game qualified 2007 as the best season in Hawaii history. And many considered Hawaii’s victory over UW to be the biggest win in school history. Control-F to find that exact phrase in this AP recap.
(That was also loss No. 2 in what turned out to be a 15-game losing streak for the Huskies. Not to re-open old wounds or anything.)
THIS IS INTERESTING: Chow apparently got into it with local newspaper columnist Dave Reardon during a practice this spring over something Reardon had written about defensive coordinator Kevin Clune. Don’t worry. Sounds like they reached an amicable resolution.
NOTABLE NON-FOOTBALL GRADS: Ann Dunham and Barack Obama, Sr., mother and father of President Barack Obama; Kenneth Moritsugu, former acting Surgeon General of the United States; and here’s a good one — Larry Beil, the former SportsCenter anchor who coined the phrase “Aloha means goodbye” for home run calls.
Christian Caple can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ChristianCaple