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Army (3-7) at Hawaii (0-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 30, 11 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Aloha Stadium (50,000) -- Honolulu, Hawaii. Television: Mountain West Network. Home Record: Army 2-3, Hawaii 0-5. Away Record: Army 0-4, Hawaii 0-6. Neutral Record: Army 1-0, Hawaii 0-0. Conference Record: Army 0-0, Hawaii 0-8. Series Record: Hawaii leads, 2-0.
GAME NOTES: The final game of a dismal campaign is on tap this weekend in Honolulu, as the winless Hawaii Rainbow Warriors entertain the Army Black Knights in non-conference action.
Hawaii has hit the field a total of 11 times in 2013 and each outing has resulted in a disappointing outcome. However, in the last two weeks the Rainbow Warriors have shown some spirited play by going to overtime against a pair of Mountain West Conference foes. On Nov. 16, the squad was taken out by San Diego State at home, 28-21, and then last week an offensive barrage was settled with Wyoming capturing a 59-56 win in Laramie.
As for the Black Knights, a team which still has a date on the books for Dec. 14 versus Navy in their annual battle in Philadelphia, they were off the last two weeks after bowing to Western Kentucky, 21-17, back on Nov. 9. The squad has dropped three straight and four of the last five overall.
Hawaii, which has not won a game of any sort since defeating South Alabama (23-7) in the 2012 finale, has a record of 2-0 versus Army thanks to a 31-28 win three seasons ago.
If not for a 50-point explosion against Eastern Michigan the second week of October, the offensive numbers for the Black Knights would look even more disappointing heading into this weekend. Granted, the passing offense has always been an afterthought for the program, now averaging a mere 72.9 ypg to rank last in the nation, but in terms of scoring (24.4 ppg), there's still more to be desired.
Ranked first in the country with 330.6 ypg, the rushing offense has always been the backbone of this group. There is a list of seven players with at least 100 rushing yards on the campaign, but it is Terry Baggett and Larry Dixon who typically draw most of the attention. Baggett checks in with 991 yards and eight TDs, averaging 8.5 per carry, while Dixon accounts for 682 yards and six TDs.
Quarterback Angel Santiago, third on the rushing list with 535 yards and tied with Baggett for the most rushing scores, has had his moments in the pocket for Army, but not so much that opponents have to truly plan for an aerial attack from the Knights.
Xavier Moss stands as the only player with double-digit receptions, having reeled in 27 passes for 346 yards, yet all of those opportunities have still resulted in just a single TD.
The Rainbow Warriors put up a strong fight on the road Saturday, but once again the team was sent to the loss column, this time after bowing by three points. Hawaii produced 624 yards of total offense and still could not get over the hump. Sean Schroeder led the attack as he converted 37-of-50 passes for a career-high 499 yards and six touchdowns, but he was also sacked six times and had one pass picked off. Chris Gant caught eight of those passes for a game-high 174 yards, but his four touchdowns were actually tied for the game high. Joey Iosefa posted 91 yards and two TDs on 24 carries, but the Hawaii defense surrendered close to 800 yards in the hard-luck loss.
On the season, the Hawaii defense has been most vulnerable against the pass, giving up 292.8 ypg to rank 118th in the country. The run defense, which will come into play this weekend, is responsible for giving up 209.9 ypg, which means the Rainbow Warriors will be somewhat exposed.
After his explosive effort last weekend, Schroeder now has the passing attack posting 299.5 ypg, placing the team 19th nationally and that should be a key point of the offense against a smaller Army secondary. Iosefa's recent efforts give the Rainbow Warriors a legitimate threat coming out of the backfield, but still the unit is coming in with under 100 ypg on the ground.
Trying to avoid their first winless season since 1998 when they came up empty in 12 opportunities, the Rainbow Warriors are one of four teams entering this week winless in the FBS (Southern Miss, Miami-Ohio and Georgia State), but as long as the hosts can get the Army offense off the field and preserve some time on the clock, a victory is not out of the question.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Hawaii 31, Army
11/27 11:08:37 ET
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