Hawaii Faces Nevada in Mountain West Opener

September 18, 2012, 9:25 AM HST · Updated September 18, 9:28 AM
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Hawaii head coach Norm Chow at his weekly new conference on Monday. Photo by UH Athletics.

By Rodney S. Yap

University of Hawai’i Warrior football head coach Norm Chow conducted his weekly press conference Monday, recapping last week’s home opener against Lamar and previewing this week’s Mountain West opener versus Nevada.

Opening Statement …

“Obviously pleased with the win. We played hard. We had a lot of kids who got to play and defensively the numbers were good. Special teams-wise the numbers were good. We still have a lot of improvement that needs to be made in all three phases of the game but we are obviously pleased with the fact that most of our guys had a chance to play. We need to finish better. We said we were gonna play until the end. There was a little let up in the last six minutes of the game that we’re gonna correct, but all in all, a nice performance. We are anxiously looking forward to the next one. They (Nevada) present a big challenge for us because the way they play offense and the way they run around, they run around very well on defense, as well. We are excited about the challenge but it is going to be a big challenge for us.”

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On defensive lineman Moses Samia’s injury and others …

“He’s probably done for the year. It’s a tough one. I met with the doctors this morning at 8:30 a.m. and he’s probably done. It’s a tough one for us but its part of this crazy game we play, those guys are so big and strong. We need to close ranks and keep marching, there’s nothing else you can do. We feel very sorry for him; he’s devastated by it all. Darius (Bright) is still a couple weeks away … Joey (Iosefa) should be okay, although, he didn’t look as good today as I was hoping he would but he says he’ll be all right.”

On playing different quality teams in first two games …

“It doesn’t matter. We are gonna prepare the same way and I thought we did. I thought our guys were very focused. It really doesn’t matter because we play an awfully good team and I think we played Lamar very well. We took some things away that they like to do… and it really doesn’t matter. The read is that our guys are gonna play and they’re gonna play hard and that’s what we’re all about. We will accept whatever consequences like I’ve said so many times before, we will accept the consequences if we play hard. And I thought we did except in that second half I thought we had a little bit of a let up but we are gonna talk about that this afternoon.”

On Samia’s replacement …

“We had a four-man rotation with Geordon (Hanohano), Haku (Correa), Moses and Siasau (Matagiese). And we’ll probably look to move Tavita (Woodward) down maybe, get some work, see how Marcus (Malepeai) responds in there. And we are trying to look at Mike Andrade, we held him up for a couple games (finger) but it’s still early in the season. Obviously we aren’t gonna be as sturdy in there without Moses. But Haku and Geordon will have the first crack at it. And we’ll have to maybe cut the rotation down to three instead of four guys. That one hurts, not only for us, but for Moses because he’s worked so hard.”

On the lively student section …

“That was pretty fun to see, in fact we are gonna take out an article in “The Ka Leo” (student newspaper) saying thanks and keep coming. They looked like they enjoyed themselves, they were out there early…It was fun to see them and it was fun to see them having fun. That’s what it’s really all about.”

On Nevada offensive coordinator and former Warrior quarterback and OC Nick Rolovich …

“It was hopeful that we could keep Nick and really maybe I strung him along too long. And I mean this sincerely; Nick probably needed to go, for his own professional growth. He has a nice job now but I don’t know much about his professional background. Football-wise when I spoke with him he was a very intelligent, intense young guy. Chris (Ault) runs that show up there, there’s no two ways about it, and everybody knows that. Not only does Nick get the chance to grow but he gets the chance to grow learning from a terrific football coach.”

On Nevada head coach Chris Ault … 

“We go way back. We stay in contact and he’s done a terrific job since coming to UNR (University of Nevada-Reno). And he’s been able to adjust, that’s what you like about guys like that, they adapt to what’s happening and he’s been able to perfect that crazy offense.”

On Nevada’s potent pistol offense …

“It’s tough because they stand right behind the quarterback. When you’re on one side or the other you can kind of get a beat on that but when you stand right behind the quarterback you don’t see ’em right away and that’s the whole idea. He can go either way and it causes that little bit of hesitation and basically what it is, is the option offense. It’s the read zone that everybody’s running but he’s doing it from back here rather than doing it off on the side.”

On Nevada’s defense…

“While the offense is quite complicated schematically, the defense is…I shouldn’t say simple, they’re sound and they play a Cover-4 coverage. For the most part that is what you’re gonna see, they just do it well, kind of like Monty Kiffin at USC, which I have so much respect for. You know where they’re gonna be its just trying to execute. They’re not gonna trick you by their alignments, where offensively they motion a lot and they use that pistol to try to confuse you. Defensively they are gonna stay in the same spot and you gotta go get ’em, you gotta go after them. Their special teams is pretty good too so it’s gonna be fun.”

On Nevada’s pistol offense changing since the arrival of Rolovich…

“I haven’t seen enough, I look obviously on the other side of the ball. Our tapes have been down, we actually just started looking at them this morning. We haven’t seen enough. When we visited with Chris (Ault) we wanted to run the ball better so we ran to him and he wanted to throw the ball better so we had a chance to converse that way. So maybe Nick’s helping them there. They have a nice running quarterback, I know that.”

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