The Warriors appeared to be putting things back together this weekend when a defensive fumble recovery for a touchdown and a Sean Schroeder touchdown pass put Hawaii up, 14-7, in the first quarter against Colorado State. But the Rams' offense woke up and scored the next three touchdowns, giving them a lead they would never relinquish.
Despite 393 yards of total offense, 25 first downs, more than 36 minutes of possession time and five Colorado State turnovers, the Warriors could not manage more than 27 points. Unfortunately for the Warriors, they committed five turnovers of their own, including two fourth-quarter interception returns for touchdowns after Hawaii had closed the score 28-27.
Quarterback Sean Schroeder (19-of-46) threw for 200 yards, but also fired three picks while being sacked four times in the game. His 19 completions were spread around to seven different receivers, but the two interceptions late in the game turned out to be the Warriors' undoing.
The 10 combined turnovers between the two teams made for a sloppy game and spoiled the exceptional rushing performances of Hawaii's Joey Iosefa (22 carries for 106 yards) and Will Gregory (16 carries for 84 yards). Gregory's recent performance brings the freshman running back to 534 yards for the year.
The Warriors dropped to 1-6 on the season, placing them in the basement of the Mountain West Conference at 0-4. With five games left to play, the best Norm Chow's team can achieve is a .500 record for the regular season, which seems unlikely with opponents like Fresno State, Boise State and Air Force on the horizon.
By comparison, Colorado State improved to 2-6 on the season and 1-3 in the Mountain West Conference. The Rams have four games left this season, facing Wyoming next week, followed by UNLV, Boise State and New Mexico. For Colorado State's first-year head coach Jim McElwain, the victory over Hawaii was a building block as he maps out the future of Rams' football.
“I want to say how excited I am for our guys,” declared McElwain (as reported by Kelly Lyell on Coloradoan.com). “It’s something we really needed as a program.”