Air Force Football: 10 Things We Learned in Falcons' Win Against the Warriors
While it was not the most impressive of games for the Air Force Falcons, they certainly did what they had to do to come out with a 21-7 victory over Hawaii on senior night.
The win was big for Air Force because at 6-5, they are now bowl eligible and likely headed to the Armed Forces Bowl.
It was a struggle for most of the game, but the Air Force rushing attack was just too much in the end.
Here are 10 things we learned from tonight's Air Force victory.
Why Pass When You Can Run
For the first time in three years, a college team went an entire game without throwing the football.
Air Force was all about the run on Friday night. The Falcons ran the ball 68 times for 331 yards, without a single pass.
Everybody would agree that running the football is the safest thing to do and Air Force proved that on Friday night.
Hawaii Needs a Quarterback
As the game progressed, it became more and more obvious that Hawaii is in desperate need of a quarterback.
Sophomore Jeremy Higgins started the game and was impressive only on the first drive of the game.
He was eventually pulled for former starter Sean Schroeder. Schroeder was not any better as the two combined to go 14-of-29 for 125 yards and a touchdown.
First Downs Win Football Games
Hawaii was able to move the ball a little bit in the first half, but once the second half rolled around, the Warriors struggled on the offensive side of the ball.
The Warriors did not get one first down the entire second half and needless to say did not put any points on the board.
It typically takes at least a few first downs to win a football game, no matter who the opponent is.
Cody Getz Is Tough to Bring Down
Even though he is only 5'7" and 175 pounds, Air Force senior running back Cody Getz is a load to bring down.
He proved that by running through a Hawaii defender on his way to the end zone for a five-yard go-ahead score.
Getz went over 100 yards for the sixth time this season and the first time in a few weeks.
He totaled 125 yards and a score on 21 carries.
Turnovers Are Not Always the Biggest Stat
It is not often that a team loses the turnover battle and wins as easily as Air Force did against Hawaii.
Tonight that was the case as the Falcons turned to ball over two times to only one for the Warriors.
Hawaii is so bad, that did not matter one bit.
Air Force would be well-advised not to let that happen at Fresno State next weekend.
Persistence Pays off
The Air Force coaching staff might already know that persistence pays off, but it was on full display Friday night.
The Falcons only rushed for 103 yards in the first half, but continued to do what they know how to do.
In the second half, they managed to break open a few runs and also break the game wide open.
Defense Still Wins Games
While not enough can be said about the Air Force rushing attack and the offensive display the Falcons put on Friday night, that victory came because of defense.
Hawaii was only able to manage 162 yards of total offense and less than 30 came in the second half.
That side of the ball is what won the game for the Falcons.
Third-Down Efficiency Is Key
Toward the end of the first half, Hawaii was 5-of-6 on third-down conversions and the game was tied at seven.
From that point on, the Warriors were 0-for-10 on third down.
Air Force on the other hand was 10-for-17 on third downs on the game. Those numbers generally coincide with a win, and that is exactly what happened.
Big Plays Are the Key to Victory
While the Air Force offense struggled for most of the day, there were two big plays that helped the Falcons come out with the victory.
One of those plays came early in the second half on a 54-yard run by Cody Getz and then a 52-yard run by Jon Lee.
Those two plays set up the game-winning and insurance touchdowns.
It Helps to Have Multiple Options
While Air Force likes to run the football, they do not just have one guy doing it.
The Falcons have a plethora of talent at that position, from Cody Getz to Wes Cobb to Jon Lee—all of them can make plays.
Quarterback Connor Dietz is also a threat running with the ball in his hands.
There is plenty of other talent on the offensive side of the ball for Air Force, and it was on full display on Friday night.