2017 Football Preview – Mountain West Conference – Rainbow Warriors
Looking for 2017 Hawaii Rainbow Warriors predictions? The Rainbow Warriors are hoping for back to back bowl bids under second year head coach Nick Rolovich.
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- 2017-18 College Football Preview – Hawaii Rainbow Warriors
- Head Coach: Nick Rolovich
- 2016 Record: 7-7
- Hawaii Rainbow Warriors Odds to win the 2017 FBS Championship: +50000
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2017 Hawaii Rainbow Warriors Predictions: Team Strengths
The big boys upfront will be tough to push over: The Rainbow Warriors main strength going into 2017 is their talented offensive line. A line that loses two All-Conference players returns one of the best left tackles in the Mountain West in left tackle Dejon Allen, who gave up just one sacked in 887 pass attempts from 2014 to 2016.
Also UCLA transfer Fred Ulu-Perry should be very good at the center position and is one of my sleepers for an All-Conference team.
Right tackle Matt Norman is a former Juco signee who will hold down the other side of the line and should continue to make an impact. Last year he played in 9 games after redshirting in 2015.
There isn’t much strong depth on the offensive line but I believe there is enough talent there to overcome a major injury to everyone except Allen.
This special teams unit can be really special: Having a special teams unit as a strength? That’s what the Rainbow Warriors are producing. Even while the team has struggled the last few years they have been a top 30 unit each of the last 4 years in special teams key categories.
Last year with a new special teams coordinator their former Juco signee Kip Rigoberto performed all three kicking duties. He averaged 39 yards per net punt, was 13-13 with a long of 55 yards on field goals, and had 25 touchbacks on 71 kickoffs.
I expect another huge season from the ultra threat kicker and should be a key weapon in the close swing games on the road in conference.
The linebacking core will also be extremely strong this year as they return star inside linebacker Jahlani Tavai who had 129 tackles and nearly 20 tackles for a loss last season.
2017 Hawaii Rainbow Warriors Predictions: Team Weaknesses
The passing game will need to play better to get to 8 or 9 wins?: While the passing numbers for the Rainbow Warriors weren’t terrible last season, they weren’t blowing teams away with a potent aerial attack.
Juco signee Dru Brown was up and down in his starts last season. While playing good in his first couple of starts he had a 3 game stretch where he averaged only 144 yards through the air and 1 touchdown with 3 interceptions.
Heading into the final two games he was lights out with 9 touchdowns and zero interceptions. This will be Brown’s second year in this offense and while I don’t expect him to be challenged by the depth of the position, he should improve on last year’s pedestrian numbers.
Who needs a passing defense? The Rainbow Warriors had one of the worst secondary’s in the nation last season, finishing in the bottom 115 for all major categories.
They gave up 29 touchdowns while only picking off 11 passes with a 62% completion percentage rate.
The unit was replacing a starting safety and two starting corners and somehow were worst than their 2015 numbers.
This season they are replacing two starting corners and a safety again, however I expect much better play out of this unit.
Hawaii Rainbow Warriors Prediction: 4-8
Hawaii will take a step back this season, but not due to a lack of talent as they simply have a tough schedule and face road games against UCLA, Wyoming, and Nevada.
2017 Hawaii Rainbow Warriors Football Schedule
- 8/26/17 TBD @MASS
- 9/2/17 TBD WCAR
- 9/9/17 TBD UCLA
- 9/23/17 TBD @WYO
- 9/30/17 TBD COLST
- 10/7/17 TBD @NEV
- 10/14/17 TBD SJSU
- 10/28/17 TBD SDSU
- 11/4/17 TBD @UNLV
- 11/11/17 TBD FRES
- 11/18/17 TBD @UTAHST
- 11/25/17 TBD BYU
What do you think about our 2017 Hawaii Rainbow Warriors predictions? Please leave us a comment below telling us how you think they’ll do in 2017!
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