Hawai’i Football: Who’s on the 2024 schedule & how does it look?

Hawai’i Football: Who’s on the 2024 schedule & how does it look?

Hawai’i Football: Who’s on the 2024 schedule & how does it look?


HONOLULU – The University of Hawai’i football program, in conjunction with the Mountain West Conference, revealed the 2024 football season schedule for the Rainbow Warriors Thursday morning that features 12 regular season games, three bye weeks, the new Pac-12/Mountain West crossover game and much more. 

In 2023, UH played a 13-game schedule and finished 5-8 overall, just missing out on bowl game eligibility in year two under Timmy Chang. The ‘Bows will play a completely different slate of non-conference opponents while only seeing four repeats from the Mountain West schedule this year as the conference works with the overall realignment in college football that impacted the remaining Pac-12 teams.

Below is a quick week-by-week breakdown of the 2024 Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors’ football opponents with dates and game locations included. 

WEEK 0 – vs Delaware State (August 24) 

Last season record: 1-10 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 1st Meeting 

Hailing out of the FCS, the Hornets finished last in the MEAC (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) in 2023 after posting just one win and losing all five conference contests. It’ll be Year 2 of the Lee Hull rebuild of the Delaware State program as the former CFL wideout and Patriots’ training camp invitee looks to incorporate 13 new signees, six high school prospects and seven college transfers. 

The first-time opponent of Hawai’i returns most of last year’s extremely-youthful roster while adding key pieces like UNLV transfer WR Jordan Jakes and former 5-star QB recruit D’Wan Mathis – the later of whom previously spent time with Georgia backing up Stetson Bennett before transferring to Temple in 2021. 

WEEK 1 – vs UCLA (August 31) 

Last season record: 8-5 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 4-0 

The ‘Bows will look for their 1st win in program history over the Bruins as UCLA visits UH for the first time since 1939 for the Poi Bowl at Honolulu Stadium. Hawai’i and UCLA have played twice since the turn of the century, both in Pasadena and both 3+ TD wins for the Bruins. 

UH will serve as first-time head coach and former UCLA All-American DeShaun Foster’s first game as HC for the Bruins. The former NFL standout spent the past seven seasons as the RBs coach for his alma mater, was promoted to associate HC ahead of the 2023 campaign and took the full-time gig after Chip Kelly’s February departure. Under Foster’s tutelage, UCLA has led the Pac-12 for two straight years but lost leading rusher Carson Steele to the NFL draft. The Bruins will still have RB T.J. Harden, who completed his sophomore season right behind Steele with 827 yards and 8 rushing TDs. 

WEEK 2 – BYE (September 7) 

WEEK 3 – at Sam Houston State (September 14) 

Last season record: 3-9 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 1st Meeting 

The second of two first-time opponents for UH, the Bearkats will be participating in their second FBS season and first that it is eligible for the postseason. Sam Houston began to figure things out to end last season, winning three of the final four games in 2023 as they competed as members of Conference USA. 

Hawai’i serves as the home-opener for the Bearkats as Sam Houston hits the road for the opening two games of their slate. Sam Houston received six CUSA player honors, placing three players on the all-freshman team while also returning DB Da’Marcus Crosby – one of the program’s two 1st-team all-conference defenders from last year. 

WEEK 4 – vs Northern Iowa (September 21)

Last season record: 6-5 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 0-1 

The 2nd FCS opponent on UH’s 2024 schedule, the Panthers worked through a difficult slate last year to finish above .500 with two wins over ranked FCS opponents and five total ranked opponents. Northern Iowa will see Dylan Raiola and Nebraska in Lincoln before traveling to Honolulu to take on the Rainbow Warriors for the second time ever. 

UNI is led by longtime head coach Mark Farley, who ranks second amongst active coaches in FCS wins with 180 and has guided the Panthers to winning seasons in 19 of the 23 years he has been head coach, developing 40 NFL players in that time. He is *almost* as legendary as the great Stan Sheriff, who spent 23 years as UNI’s head coach for football before becoming the school’s athletic director for another 13 calendar changes. Sheriff is in both UNI and UH Hall of Fames, serving as Hawai’i’s athletic director for 10 years as well before his passing.  

*Note: If Hawai’i wins versus both Delaware State and Northern Iowa, only one of the victories will be counted towards bowl eligibility requirements. * 

WEEK 5 – BYE (September 28) 

WEEK 6 – at San Diego State (October 5) 

Last season record: 4-8 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 22-9-2 

Some déja vu here for Hawai’i, who has dropped the last four meetings against SDSU with the most recent matchup ending in a 41-34 home loss for the ‘Bows while coming off of a bye week back in October of 2023. The ‘Bows have historically struggled in San Diego, sitting at 3-11 all-time while visiting the Aztecs, but will look for some revenge as they get a do-over of sorts from last season against a rebuilding San Diego State program under new head coach Sean Lewis. 

It’ll be the UH defense, newly under the watch of longtime coaching veteran Dennis Thurman, who will especially circle this one. The ‘Bows allowed 21 points in the 4th quarter of that 2023 loss to the Aztecs and hope to begin the Mountain West portion of the schedule with a resounding response one year later while changing the series’ historical narrative. 

WEEK 7 – vs Boise State (October 12) 

Last season record: 8-6 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 15-3 

The 2023 season was a strange one for Boise State, but one that ended in a record fifth overall Mountain West title and the conference-best fourth championship game behind over 300 rushing yards. The Broncos did it under the leadership of then-interim head coach Spencer Danielson, who won the final three games of the year (including the MW title game against UNLV) before being elevated to the full-time head coaching position. 

Boise State will be boosted by On3’s highest-rated Mountain West recruiting class since 2002 with 28 total players being added to the defending conference champions. The most notable is former 5-star recruit and USC transfer QB Malachi Nelson, the 13th-rated high school recruit in the class of 2023. The 6-foot-3 redshirt freshman will likely compete for the starting job for the Broncos after previous starting QB Taylen Green transferred to Arkansas this offseason. 

WEEK 8 – at Washington State (October 19) 

Last season record: 5-7 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 2-3 

Taking the place of Hawai’i visiting Air Force, the ‘Bows will head to Pullman instead as part of the Pac 12/Mountain West alliance (agreement? partnership?) that sees all MW teams playing one of Oregon State or Washington State during the conference schedule. The programs haven’t met in 15 years – the last matchup was September 12, 2009 – but both sides have something to prove after five-win seasons. 

It’ll be a matchup of young, third-year head coaches as WSU head coach Jake Dickert and UH head coach Timmy Chang face off. Hawai’i has struggled on the road over the past two seasons and Dickert sits a game under .500 after his couple years as Pullman’s main man. The Cougs have a couple Hawai’i connections on the roster in DBs Kapena Gushiken and Tanner Moku. Gushiken is a KS-Maui graduate and transferred into WSU after two seasons at Saddleback College while Moku is a KS-Kapālama alum who is the younger brother of former UH offensive lineman Kaiwi Chung (‘18). 

WEEK 9 – vs Nevada (October 26) 

Last season record: 2-10 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 12-13 

Another team with a change in the lead chair, Nevada hired Jeff Choate as the 28th head coach in program history back on December 4, 2023, replacing Ken Wilson after serving as the co-defensive coordinator at Texas for the past three seasons. The Wolfpack won’t be Choate’s first head coaching job at the college level, though. The longtime football coach spent four years as the head man at FCS Montana State, leading the Bobcats to back-to-back playoff appearances in his final two seasons. 

This matchup is always fun for multiple reasons, perhaps none bigger than the connections between the two programs. Defensive tackle Dion Washington made the flip in the transfer portal from the Wolfpack to the ‘Bows this past offseason while Hawai’i’s head coach Timmy Chang spent a few seasons with Nevada before taking over his alma mater’s football program. Nevada also started redshirt freshman QB A.J. Bianco for eight games last season as the former Saint Louis standout battled for the position all year.

WEEK 10 – at Fresno State (November 2) 

Last season record: 9-4 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 25-20-1 

The Bulldogs looked like the Mountain West favorite through the non-conference schedule in 2023 with a perfect 4-0 start and winning four of their first five conference games – and then the wheels fell off. Fresno State lost the final three regular season games, crushing conference hopes, before salvaging the end of the year with a win in the Isleta New Mexico Bowl over NMSU, 37-10. 

Hawai’i didn’t play the Bulldogs in 2023, last meeting in Fresno in 2022 – Chang’s first season. This could be a particularly good measuring stick game to show how far Hawai’i has come in a couple seasons against one of the conference’s typical powers. The matchup also pits the Mountain West’s top two passing touchdown leaders against each other in Hawai’i senior Brayden Schager (26 TDs in ‘23) and Fresno State junior Mikey Keene (24 TDs in ‘23). Preemptively take the over in this one. 

WEEK 11 – vs UNLV (November 9) 

Last season record: 9-5 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 14-19 

One of the four rivalry trophy games, it’s the “Island Showdown” Trophy on the line. The Rebels took the rivalry trophy back last season with a 44-20 win over Hawai’i as UNLV turned into the “Runnin’ Rebels” with 307 yards on the ground while the ‘Bows went 1-of-11 on 3rd down. 

It’ll be a much different UNLV squad coming to the islands after redshirt freshman QB Jayden Maiava transferred to USC this offseason and former starter Doug Brumfield retired from football. That doesn’t mean the Rebels will be in trouble in year two under 2023 Mountain West Coach of the Year Barry Odom, who recruited and gained the commitment of Holy Cross graduate transfer QB Matt Sluka – an FCS standout that totaled 29 total TDs, over 1,200 yards rushing and more than 1,700 yards through the air in his senior season. The 6-foot-3 dual-threat quarterback should be an excellent fit in Brennan Marion’s “Go-Go Offense” that saw great success last season. 

WEEK 12 – at Utah State (November 16) 

Last season record: 6-7 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 12-5 

The fifth and final of Hawai’i’s opponents that made a bowl game in 2023, the Aggies have won seven consecutive matchups with the Rainbow Warriors and the last three in Logan, Utah. In fact, Hawai’i is just 2-6 on the road against USU since 1957.  As the ‘Bows look to switch back to an FBS contender again, this can be a statement of sorts on the road. 

Utah State finished just a game ahead of the Rainbow Warriors in 2023 and could be one of the key swing games for Hawai’i’s bowl hopes in Chang’s third year. There will be some NFL-level receiving talent on display in this one as Utah State’s All-Mountain West 1st-Team receiver Jalen Royals and Hawai’i’s 2nd-Team All-Mountain West receiver Steven McBride both returned to their respective programs. That doesn’t even mention UH’s Freshman All-America selection Pofele Ashlock, who led the team with 83 receptions last season while hauling in nine scores, tied with McBride for tops on the team. 

WEEK 13 – BYE (November 23) 

WEEK 14 – vs New Mexico (November 30) 

Last season record: 4-8 | All-time record vs Hawai’i: 11-16 

The loss at New Mexico last season ended up being a crushing blow to the bowl chances of Hawai’i as the Lobos were one of three teams to finish below the ‘Bows in the final conference standings. There’s a chance that this season’s bowl hopes will rest on this final regular season game and the Rainbow Warriors don’t want to repeat history. 

New Mexico will be the fifth team with a new head coach that Hawai’i faces in 2024 as Bronco Mendenhall takes over the program in his return to the Mountain West. The 57-year-old was BYU’s head coach for 11 seasons, beginning in 2005. He compiled double-digit wins in five of those seasons with the first one coming in year two. Mendenhall was also 2-0 in his time at BYU against Hawai’i with a win at home and at Aloha Stadium. The ‘Bows will have to expel former demons all the way through the end of the year for bowl opportunities. 

Hawai’i Football Spring Practice Schedule

Hawai’i Football Spring Practice Schedule

Hawai’i Football Spring Ball 2024


All practices are open to the public; however, picture taking and video recording is not allowed.

Mon, Jan 29 7-9 a.m.
Tues, Jan 30 7-9 a.m.
Thurs, Feb 1 7-9 a.m.
Fri, Feb 2 7-9 a.m.

Mon, Feb 5 7-9 a.m.
Tues, Feb 6 7-9 a.m.
Thurs, Feb 8 7-9 a.m.
Fri, Feb 9 7-9 a.m.

Tues, Feb 13 7-9 a.m.
Thurs, Feb 15 7-9 a.m.
Fri, Feb 16 7-9 a.m.

Tues, Feb 20 7-9 a.m.
Thurs, Feb 22 7-9 a.m.

Spring Game TBD

Schedule is subject to change without notice.



Hawai’i football adds former Jets, Bills DC among latest staff changes

Hawai’i football adds former Jets, Bills DC among latest staff changes

via/ Hawaii Football

Hawai’i football adds former Jets, Bills DC among latest staff changes


HONOLULU – The staff tweaks keep coming for the University of Hawai’i football program. 

After not renewing the expiring contracts of three coaches earlier this month, the ‘Bows coaching staff received a few more changes on January 19 as Colorado defensive quality control coach Dennis Thurman officially signed on to be the Rainbow Warriors’ defensive coordinator for the 2024 season, reassigning coach Jacob Yoro to head the safeties room. Thurman, a former NFL defensive back, has 31 years of coaching experience under his belt, 17 coming at the NFL level with two stops in the AFC East as a defensive coordinator for four seasons. 

In addition to Thurman, the ‘Bows will add a familiar face back to the staff as Jeff Reinebold makes his return to Mānoa as the defensive line coach. The 40-year football coaching veteran served as the director of player development for UH during the 2022 season before returning to the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats as the team’s special teams coordinator and assistant defensive backs coach, his third stint with the franchise.  

Reinebold now joins the Hawai’i program for the third time, previously serving on the 2006 and 2007 staff as the defensive line coach along with his director of player development tenure in 2022. 

Hawai’i will also make a familiar addition to the offensive side of the staff as Dan Morrison officially joins the program as the new QB coach and co-offensive coordinator. The longtime offensive mind coached for the ‘Bows for nine seasons during the June Jones era and enjoyed record-setting success as the associate head coach, co-OC and QBs coach while at SMU. 

Morrison, often referenced as a “quarterback whisperer” by those within the sport, could be found at multiple practices throughout the 2023 calendar year for Hawai’i but never was added to the official coaching staff. While at UH under Jones, Morrison helped current ‘Bows head coach Timmy Chang break NCAA records for career passing yards (17,072) and UH legend Colt Brennan set the career passing touchdowns mark (131) and coached Brennan through his record-setting season in which he tossed a record-58 touchdown passes. 

In every season with Morrison on staff, the ‘Bows finished in the top five nationally in the passing game. 

Thurman played nine seasons in the NFL from 1978-1986, eight with the Dallas Cowboys and one final season with the then-St. Louis Cardinals – who would later become the Phoenix Cardinals before finally settling on the Arizona Cardinals’ name today – and compiled 36 interceptions in his career, nine of which came during the 1981 season. 

Following his playing career, Thurman took a couple of seasons off before returning to football as a DB coach for the Phoenix Cardinals for the 1988 and 1989 seasons. He returned to his alma mater, USC, a few years later and stayed with the Trojans from 1993-2000 in the same role, helping coach future NFL standouts like Troy Polamalu, Brian Kelly and Jason Sehorn. 

After a 5-7 season in 2000, Thurman took a year off and went back to the professional ranks as a defensive assistant on Ravens’ defensive coordinator Rex Ryan’s staff in 2002, where he would stay until Ryan took the New York Jets head coaching job in January of 2009 – following the defensive guru to the Meadowlands as the defensive backs coach and helping lead the Jets to back-to-back AFC Championship games and the franchise’s last two playoff appearances. 

Prior to the 2013 season, Thurman was promoted to defensive coordinator for New York and helped lead a defense that allowed 24.2 points per game and finished sixth in the league in 2014 for yards allowed per game with 327.2 yards a contest. During his six seasons with the Jets, Thurman was credited for continuing the growth of NFL Pro Football Hall of Famer Darrelle Revis and multi-time Pro Bowler Antonio Cromartie. 

In January 2015, Thurman was named the defensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills, following Ryan further north. While in Buffalo, Thurman was a key contributor in the All-Pro development of Stephon Gilmore – who was a Pro Bowler under the supervision of Thurman. 

The University of Hawai’i football program is scheduled to begin spring practices on January 29. The ‘Bows are expected to participate in four practices a week, Monday through Friday (with the exception of Wednesdays).  

New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District Project Update — December 14, 2023

New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District Project Update — December 14, 2023

New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District Project Update — December 14, 2023


HONOLULU — A press conference was held on the morning of December 14, 2023 by administration in charge of the new Aloha Stadium Entertainment District project to provide the general public with an update regarding the project, with state officials like Gov. Josh Green, Senator Glenn Wakai and representatives from Mayor Rick Blangiardi’s office in attendance to show unified support for the large undertaking for the state. 

Below are some of the key points and moments from Wednesday’s press conference in order of speakers and final miscellaneous questions. 

Governor Josh Green: 

  • Major questions of being able to undertake the project while providing the necessary aid to Maui following the wildfires are not a concern, Green said. The NASED project will not have any negative impact on the focus of rebuilding from the tragic loss. 
  • The integrated private-public partnership reduces the financial risk to the state, beginning today. Financial risk moves to the private sector as the project is on-going, along with some of the upside, as the stadium and housing around it is built. 
  • Building the stadium will benefit the community going into the future — $2 billion of economic output generated from construction spending alone, translating into 12,000 construction jobs and more than $600 million in construction wages. 
  • Expected 4,500 housing units will be built on-site and 70% of that housing will be targeted for the district’s workforce. “That’s very good for us because we’ve been struggling to build enough housing for our people over the last few years,” Green said. 
  • “This will be very good for our young people,” the governor said in reference to giving the youth something to celebrate, from high school football teams a stage that can display them the way they deserve. Green called the high school football in Hawai’i “vibrant” and remarked about the hope that the elite play and good that students provide the public. 
  • Green referenced supporting the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa’s football program, talking about the need to support it as a true Division I FBS program with an actual “great” stadium “befitting of a great state” being important.  

Senator Glenn Wakai: 

  • “This is quite a Christmas gift for the people of Hawai’i.” 
  • “It finally turns what was a long-time dream into a reality,” continued Wakai, referencing the public fatigue that the project has produced. 
  • Proudly stated that 12/14 was a marker of a clear, unified plan moving forward after “four years of coal” for the public at Christmas time after the closing of Aloha Stadium in 2019. 
  • “Customer-base is there” for the new NASED project, pointing out the Arizona Memorial close by and the 1.8 million annual visitors that rarely have something to do after visiting the powerful historical site.  
  • In reference to the rebuilding of Lahaina over the next decade, Wakai talked about instead of exorbitant tax hikes on local residents in Hawai’i that the entertainment district and other monetized locations can help ease that financial burden on the public.  
  • “It’s more than just a stadium, it’s going to be a hugely vibrant and dynamic district for all of us to relish,” Wakai wrapped up saying. 

Aloha Stadium Authority Chair Brennon Morioka: 

  • Discussed the cancellation of the previous procurements before settling on the new single design Build-Operate-Maintain procurement for the stadium and surrounding real-estate areas. 
  • The powers in charge of the project vetted the plan with extensive market sounding and due diligence, engaging with the stakeholders that will be participating. 
  • Market sounding process “[identified] a number of interested potential bidders” that elicited excitement amongst the group. 
  • Multiple issues were also found throughout the process that have since been taken care of and worked through with the stakeholders that will hopefully provide for a better final product. 
  • Echoed belief that the project (stadium & entertainment district) will greatly benefit the state along with the stakeholders involved, discussing financial upswing that could be provided long term. 
  • Acknowledges that in the short-term, there are financial challenges that a partner or developer will “have to buy into and overcome” which is why the preference for a partner is focused on a long-term result of the community involved as well. 
  • Looking at one integrated Private-Public Partnership with a single entity engaged as the master developer for the 100-acre Aloha Stadium district. 
  • New Aloha Stadium will have a minimum of 25,000 seats with premium suites, lounges, and boxes. 
  • Stadium expected to be built to handle not just football, but also “world-class soccer and rugby” while serving as a major concert venue along with other entertainment events. 
  • “We will be utilizing the current $400-million appropriation and long-term funding, and cost overruns will be borne by the private sector, thus reducing risks for the state.” 
  • Master developer is obligated to develop the surrounding district into a mixed-use development “in line” with the vision of the state and city. 
  • The deadline for qualifications is set for February 2024, the priority-listed offerors will be selected in April 2024 and the initial proposals will be due in Summer 2024.  
  • The selected preferred offeror will come in the fall of 2024, kicking off further negotiations with said-preferred offeror with the intent of a contract to be executed by the following summer in 2025. 
  • As of now, the 2028 Hawai’i football home opener against Kansas is on-target to have kickoff inside the new Aloha Stadium.  

UH President David Lassner: 

  • The university fully supports and embraces the PPP approach in identifying a master developer who will design, build and maintain the new Aloha Stadium district in Haleiwa. 
  • The old Aloha Stadium presented UH with unanticipated financial challenges after moving home games for the Rainbow Warriors on campus to Clarence T.C. Ching Complex. 
  • New Aloha Stadium will provide Hawai’i football with a “modern venue” that should help enable the program to play and compete at the FBS level and attract talent that will make the people of the state proud. 
  • The financial impact of home games being moved to NASED will assist in funding for the university’s non-revenue sports, allowing those programs to have a better chance to thrive. 

Misc. Question Responses (answered by Morioka unless otherwise stated): 

  • Regarding 25K seats in new stadium, possibility for more:  
      • “The private developer will have the opportunity to use their innovation… tell us what they can build, what they can afford and in what way, so that way if they want to offer something that is more than 25,000 seats, they want to offer other kinds of amenities that are above the minimum requirements, then they’ll score more points… potentially winning this solicitation.” 
  • Regarding developer’s revenue and main sources of income to supplement support of build: 
      • “We will work with the developer teams on their financial proposals as well. Their revenue is going to come from a variety of sources… concerts, etc.” 
      • University of Hawai’i, high school football games won’t be income for partner but most of all other events will be to help offset costs of maintaining the district after construction. 
  • Who will be making the decision on the final proposal that wins? 
      • “We have a selection committee that is responsible for evaluating proposals. They will be the ones tasked with making that decision and recommendation going forward… We are able to supplement this committee with subject matter experts.” 
      • “I think all of us have the same interests in getting something we are all going to be happy with.” 
      • Stadium Authority will be the direct overseer of this contract. 
  • On the possibility of expansion of the stadium: 
      • Part of the understanding with developers will be an ability to expand and update the stadium, whether it be an increase in seating or an addition of a roof for the structure. 
  • On if UH would have an opportunity to be greatly involved in the surrounding entertainment district (a la SDSU): 
      • “What the distract will look like is still on the table… There is a whole variety of opportunity.” 
  • Governor Josh Green on economic opportunity surrounding the district: 
      • “Economic opportunity zones are very tax favorable and this one goes until 2047, so the people who invest and build [the NASED project] … [they will have] some federal tax benefits and that helps balance out the desire for investment.” 
  • On the expected amount of interested parties in comparison to the original three:  
      • “We’re hoping for more, but we do know that the three that participated before are still interested. What the final number looks like is to be seen [in February 2024]. 
  • On if the stadium is expected to be done before the surrounding entertainment district: 
      • “The requirement for the stadium is basically to finish it before the fall of 2028. The rest of the development can come whenever they look at the market demands… we do believe that development will probably start concurrent or shortly after the construction of the stadium.” 
      • The possibility remains of the stadium being completed earlier in 2028, allowing for smaller events to occur before the Rainbow Warriors’ home opener. That is the preference, though not a requirement. 
  • Regarding demolition of the old Aloha Stadium: 
      • Comes down to the cost & risk management standpoint on why the demolition of the old stadium hasn’t begun.  
      • “We’re trying to be very sensitive and save money for the state and taxpayers… trying to ensure that we aren’t going to be spending [the 400 million taxpayer dollars] on things other than building the stadium.” 
  • Governor Josh Green on the housing expectations and if he is the one who should be held accountable regarding the success of the project in 5 years: 
      • “Absolutely, it’s our administration that has to be accountable.” 
      • At least 20% of the housing needs to be affordable with hopes that the number will be more, which will be calculated in the bid process. 
      • 70% workforce housing is important to community for development in the future as well. 


Governor Green shared that future updates would be on the way to keep communication open through the process. 

Hawai’i wins 6th straight Senior Night Game to spoil Colorado State’s bowl hopes

Hawai’i wins 6th straight Senior Night Game to spoil Colorado State’s bowl hopes

Hawai’i wins 6th straight Senior Night Game to spoil Colorado State’s bowl hopes


HONOLULU – The Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors (5-8, 3-5 MWC) played spoiler on Saturday night, denying Colorado State (5-7, 3-5 MWC) an automatic bowl selection and winning on Senior Night for the sixth consecutive year, using a career-long 51-yard Matthew Shipley field goal as time expired to stun the Rams. 

Below, you can find all the quick hitters of the action from Hawai’i’s thrilling 27-24 win over Colorado State on Senior Night. 


  • Hawai’i wins the coin toss and defers possession to the 2nd half, opening kickoff goes through the end zone for a touchback. Colorado State converts a pair of third downs in Hawai’i territory on the way to the game’s first points, a 21-yard TD run by freshman RB Justin Marshall. 
  • UH’s offense works quickly to pick up a few 1st downs before stalling out near the CSU 40, punting the ball away and bouncing past a Hawai’i gunner into the end zone for a touchback with 7:48 left in the 1st quarter. 
  • Elijah Palmer snags his 2nd INT of the season on a deep bomb from Brayden Fowler-Nicolosi to keep the UH deficit at seven with 4:38 left in the opening quarter. 
  • Hawai’i’s Brayden Schager connects with a streaking Steven McBride to get the ‘Bows out near midfield and Landon Sims dashes inside the CSU 35 on the next play to set up UH’s offense. The ‘Bows overcome an illegal man downfield penalty to score with eight seconds left in the 1st quarter on a 12-yard TD reception by Steven McBride, his 9th TD of the season. 
  • Hawai’i forces a punt, but a UH personal foul penalty on the play moves the sticks for a fresh set of downs for CSU instead. The drive continues after pass interference is called on Elijah Palmer for a free 3rd down conversion to set the Rams up at Hawai’i’s 25. UH’s Cam Stone comes up with a phenomenal PBU on 3rd & Goal to force CSU to settle for a 22-yd FG for a 10-7 Rams’ lead with just over 9 minutes left in the first half. 
  • The ‘Bows respond with a 5-play scoring drive, accented by a 26-yard TD reception for Devon Tauaefa on a double-pass from Schager to Chuuky Hines and into the end zone for the freshman TE’s 1st career touchdown. The ensuing PAT is good and Hawai’i takes a 14-10 lead. 
  • Colorado State drives to the Hawai’i 38-yard line with 1:31 left in the opening half and the ‘Bows defense produces the stop on 4th & 8 to give the offense a chance to double up on points with two straight possessions. 
  • Hawai’i makes it into CSU territory before Matthew Shipley’s 43-yard FG misses wide-right to end the 1st half, leaving the UH lead at 14-10. 


  • Hawai’i receives the opening kickoff and calls for a fair catch, starting the drive at the HAW25. The ‘Bows offense goes three-and-out to begin the 3rd quarter, punting the ball away after just 90 seconds with possession. 
  • CSU’s first possession of the 2nd half comes from the Colorado State 35-yard line, responding with a three-and-out of their own without picking up a single yard during the possession for a single minute. Hawai’i takes over possession at the HAW15. 
  • UH overcomes a 2nd down holding penalty that backed them up deep with a laser from Schager to Pofele Ashlock to move the sticks. The two followed it up with a 41-yard catch-and-run to set the ‘Bows up at the CSU33 after a nice spin cycle by Ashlock left the Rams’ defender in the dust. 
  • Hawai’i finishes the drive with an 8-yard Tamatoa Mokiao-Atimalala touchdown run, the senior’s 1st career rushing TD, to extend the lead to 21-10 in favor of the ‘Bows with 8:24 left in the 3rd quarter.  
  • ‘Bows force a punt, drive inside the CSU5 before the 3rd quarter ends as Schager slices up the Rams’ defense with his arm and legs. When play resumes, an illegal blindside block penalty backs up the UH offense, forcing the ‘Bows to settle for a 35-yard field goal to make it 24-10 with 13:32 left in the game. 
  • Colorado State works quickly, stringing together 1st downs before Fowler-Nicolosi connects with Louis Brown IV on a 17-yard TD reception to cut it to 24-16 with 9:05 remaining in the 4th quarter. The 2-point conversion is NO GOOD, broken up by UH LB Noah Kema. 
  • Hawai’i goes three-and-out, punt the ball back to CSU’s 30-yard line. After being stopped on 3rd & 7 in Hawai’i territory, Colorado State attempted a 53-yard FG that came up way short and kept the UH lead at 24-16 with 4:25 left to play. 
  • After moving into CSU territory, Shipley’s 45-yard field goal try was blocked by the Rams with 2:30 remaining. Colorado State would capitalize by going to their best player, Tory Horton, for a 70-yard catch-and-run touchdown with 54 seconds left in regulation. Horton brought in the 2-point conversion to tie it at 24. 
  • Hawai’i goes 41 yards in 54 seconds, scrambling with eight seconds left and somehow getting off a 51-yard FG as time expired for the win, 27-24.

Hawai’i finishes year two of the Timmy Chang flying high, winning three of the team’s final four games after adopting the mantra of “push the sled” as the defense pulled itself up by the bootstraps to allow 24 points or less in three of the final four contests after holding opponents to 20 or less in two of the previous nine games. 

The ‘Bows finish the season above .500 at home, going 4-3 inside the friendly confines of T.C. Ching Athletics Complex during the 2023 season. The win pushes Hawai’i to 7-7 at home under Timmy Chang over the past two years. The victory over Colorado State saw season-highs for total offense and rushing yards with 497 yards and 151 yards, respectively. 

Brayden Schager finished 30-for-43 passing the ball for 320 yards and a TD, the 20th time in the last 21 games that the QB has tossed for a score and the sixth game over 300 yards passing this year. One of his favorite targets, Steven McBride, moved over 1,000 yards on the season in the middle of the third quarter with a 16-yard reception. McBride is the 24th UH WR all-time to reach the 1,000-yard plateau and first Rainbow Warrior since 2019 to topple over the mark. 

Andrew Choi recorded Hawai’i’s lone sack in his final game as a Rainbow Warrior on Colorado State’s final drive of the night. Shipley’s game-winner was his second of the season, the previous coming against New Mexico State back on September 23. 

In a year of ups-and-downs, ugly moments and rough road trips, the Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors stuck together through the toughest times to win three of their final four games and catapult the program into the offseason flying high as one of the best recruiting classes in recent program memory entering Mānoa for Year Three of the #BRADDAHHOOD under Timmy Chang and company. 

Don’t go anywhere, you’re not going to want to miss what’s coming next.