Blowout left Warriors plenty embarrassed


POSTED: Monday, October 12, 2009

The E word was thrown around liberally at Saturday night's Hawaii football loss to Fresno State.

In case you can't figure it out, it's not Efficiency.

“;Yeah, it was ugly, embarrassing,”; said quarterbacks coach Nick Rolovich, minutes after the 42-17 debacle finally and mercifully ended. “;It makes the season a challenge.”;

Yes, UH was also 2-3 after last year's Fresno game. But that was 2-3 with a bullet.

Still, Rolovich was encouraged by Bryant Moniz's debut as the starting quarterback, said he saw a lot of good things.

I saw a few, but also a lot of bad passes — not just misreads or incorrectly run routes, of which there were plenty, too. Some of the inaccuracy may be due to weather, but Fresno State's Ryan Colburn didn't have any problem with the elements.

One of Moniz's strengths didn't show up on Saturday's stat sheet; this is a resilient guy who will bounce back no matter how many times you bounce him around. I doubt Moniz will complete less than 50 percent of his passes again. But if he does, next man up.

Part of me thinks UH should've taken a look at Shane Austin for a few downs. But it was also important for Moniz to lead the offense past the goal line at least once, especially if he is to take UH into a raucous Kibbie Dome this weekend. Idaho's little Quonset hut of a home isn't a joke this fall, what with the Vandals rampaging at 5-1.

One more note on the offense: Maybe Moniz would have been more effective if Leon Wright-Jackson didn't disappear after 63 yards on four carries in the first quarter.

LINEBACKER BLAZE Soares didn't sound embarrassed after he and his defensive mates yielded 412 yards. I'm not quite sure what to make of this, other than I like Soares stepping up as a vocal leader and backing his boys publicly the best he can considering the circumstances. Greg Salas did the same for the offense.

Perhaps there will be harsh words for teammates who aren't doing the job behind closed doors. But right now, who's in any position to point fingers anyway?

Each week a different phase of the game that was humming along nicely breaks down. At LaTech it was the offensive line. Against Fresno it was special teams. The worst thing about that blocked field goal is that McMackin said the Warriors anticipated that exact scheme and worked all week on it.

THE MOST embarrassing thing I saw had nothing to do with the team itself. As I walked down the steps to the field after the game, a bunch of green-clad UH fans — typical-looking local people — were slobbering all over Ryan Mathews, posing for pictures with the Fresno star running back, getting his autograph. All smiley and happy.

I was stunned — but, sadly, not surprised. This is how a lot of Hawaii fans are.

There's something to be said for recognition and appreciation of excellence, but that's not what this was. And aloha is one thing — this was just ... wrong. The Bulldogs are supposedly the Warriors' rivals, and they just crushed UH. I asked Mathews if he had some personal connection with the UH fans. He just smiled and said he'd never seen them before.

Disappointed in your Warriors? You should be.

Surprised? You shouldn't be.

Embarrassed? That's strictly up to you.

But if you're going to turn on them, have the decency to change your shirt first.