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San Diego State crushes Hawaii 55-0

  • DENIS POROY / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-ADVERTISER

    Hawaii quarterback Dru Brown fumbled as he was sacked by San Diego State defensive lineman Sergio Phillips in the first half today in San Diego.

There were a lot of numbers put up in today’s Mountain West Conference football game at San Diego State — none of them good for Hawaii.

Three touchdown passes by Christian Chapman, two 100-yard rushing performances by Donnel Pumphrey and Rashaad Penny, and a pair of interception returns for touchdown by the secondary were all the Aztecs needed in a 55-0 thrashing of the Rainbow Warriors at Qualcomm Stadium.

San Diego State has owned Hawaii the past quarter-century, and it was more of the same today en route to the Aztecs raising their overall record to 8-1 and West Division mark to 5-0 in a dominating performance that demonstrates just how far Hawaii has to go to be competitive in this league.

The loss dropped Hawaii to 4-6 (3-3 in league play). The Warriors return home to play host to nationally ranked Boise State on Nov. 12 in what could be more of the same for the overmatched Warriors.

Starting UH quarterback Dru Brown had a dreadful performance, as Hawaii had only 215 yards of total offense. He completed 22 of 35 passes for 135 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions. The pair of pick-6s by Ron Smith and Damontae Kazee were particularly costly, as the San Diego State defense was as good as advertised.

So was Pumphrey, who is certainly no one-man band. He did not score a touchdown, but set up the first two en route to 112 yards on 21 carries. Penny countered with 108 yards on eight attempts, including a 73-yard touchdown run that put the game out of reach in the third quarter.

Juwan Washington had a 24-yard touchdown catch and a 20-yard touchdown run in the second half to show how deep San Diego State is compared to UH. Chapman completed only seven of 15 for 76 yards and one pick, but he also had three touchdown passes.

Up 41-0 to start the final period, San Diego State put a punctuation on this lopsided victory with a 54-yard interception return for a touchdown by Kazee. John Baron hit the PAT to extend the lead to 48-0 with 14:42 left in the game.

Brown recorded the interception, but the ball went through the hands of John Ursua and into Kazee’s for the second pick-6 of the night by San Diego State. Washington rounded out the scoring in the game on a 20-yard scoring jaunt, with Baron knocking through the PAT with 8:02 remaining in the game.

The second half was much like the first for Hawaii, which fell behind 41-0 entering the final quarter.

Hawaii got the ball first at its own 26 to start the second half with a new quarterback in freshman Aaron Zwahlen under center. It didn’t take long for his baptism by fire, as the third pass of his career was picked off by Kazee. He returned it to the UH 22.

Chapman was sacked for a huge loss on a blind-side hit. He fumbled the football, but it was recovered by the Aztecs at the 34, setting up a 51-yard field-goal try by Baron, who missed for only the second time in 14 attempts.

Hawaii took over at its own 24. Zwahlen didn’t do much at first, keeping the ball twice for no yards and then throwing a 15-yard completion to Dylan Collie for a first down.

The Rainbow Warriors moved the sticks once more, but then the drive bogged down as Hawaii was forced to punt, pinning San Diego State at its own 13 with about nine minutes left in the period.

From there, the Aztecs broke it open on a 73-yard touchdown run by Penny. Baron hit the PAT to make it 34-0 with 6:42 left in the period. Hawaii continued to struggle offensively against a stout Aztecs defense that forced another three-and-out. On third down, Smith just missed another pick that he would have likely returned to the end zone for his second pick-6. At this point, Zwahlen was 3-for-10 for 32 yards and one pick. Those were his final numbers.

On the ensuing offensive series, UH forced San Diego to punt and took over at its own 14, with Brown coming back into the game at quarterback. But it was just more of the same as the Aztecs forced another three-and-out.

For the second time, Quest Truxton had a good punt return, this one for 33 yards, giving the Aztecs the ball at the UH 25. From there, San Diego State needed only two plays to score again, this time on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Chapman to Washington as Baron converted the PAT to make it 41-0 with 1:24 left.

San Diego State extended its advantage to 27-0 at the half in a dominating performance on both sides of the football.

After forcing a three-and-out to start the second quarter, Hawaii took over in bad field position once again, this time from the Rainbow Warriors’ 8. And once again, Brown struggled, throwing a pass into double coverage on third-and 15.

It was picked off by Smith and returned 14 yards for a touchdown. Baron added the PAT to make it 21-0 San Diego State with 12:36 left in the quarter. And at this point, it wasn’t looking good for the visitors.

On Hawaii’s next possession, the Warriors picked up back-to-back first downs and got the football into Aztecs territory for the first time, before facing a fourth-and-2. Steven Lakalaka got the call, but couldn’t answer, coming up a yard short on a sweep left as San Diego State took over at its own 46 midway through the quarter.

For the second straight possession, the Hawaii defense made a nice stand, this time with an interception by Rojesterman Farris at the San Diego State 49. The pass by Chapman bounced off Pumphrey’s hands and into Farris’. The Rainbow Warrior barely stepped out of bounds on what would have been a pick-6.

Unfortunately for the Warriors, two plays into the drive Brown threw an interception into the hands of Punahou alum Ronley Lakalaka to give San Diego State a first-and-10 at the UH 33 aided by another face-mask penalty at the end of the return.

Once more, the Warriors made a nice stand to force a 30-yard field goal by Baron to make it 24-0 with 3:45 left in the half.

On the next series, Brown had a fumble on the first snap, but it was recovered by UH. It seemed to doom the drive from the start as Hawaii was forced into another three-and-out after Brown missed a wide-open Makoa Camanse-Stevens on a pass that would have kept the drive alive.

A punt by Rigo Sanchez with about two minutes left gave San Diego State the ball at its own 24. The Aztecs moved the football into Hawaii territory, but were forced to punt, giving UH the ball at its own 20 with about a minute remaining.

The Warriors couldn’t do anything with it, but the Aztecs weren’t done thanks to a 41-yard punt return by Truxton to the UH 28 with 13 seconds left. The Aztecs had one incomplete pass before Baron knocked through a 45-yard field goal with four seconds remaining to make it 27-0 Aztecs at the half.

San Diego State had only two drives in the first quarter, but came away with a pair of touchdowns to grab a 14-0 lead.

The Aztecs got the football first to start the game at their own 25 and needed only two plays to get into Hawaii territory. Pumphrey lived up to his billing, carrying the football four times for 31 yards in setting up a nice play-action touchdown pass from Chapman to tight end David Wells, who bulled in from 13 yards out. Baron added the PAT to make it 7-0 San Diego State with 11:35 left in the quarter.

After a holding penalty on the ensuing kickoff, Hawaii started its opening drive of the game at its own 12. The Warriors got one first down en route to getting the ball out over the 30, but the brief drive stalled on third-and-short.

Sanchez lofted a nice punt of 57 yards and San Diego State took over at its own 12. The Aztecs quickly got out of the shadow of their own goal line on an 8-yard Pumphrey run and a 15-yard face-mask penalty by UH. From there, Pumphrey took over, leading his team into Hawaii territory with a 25-yard jaunt on a third-and-2 carry.

He already had 72 yards at this point on eight attempts as it became quickly apparent Hawaii was in trouble trying to stop this vaunted rushing attack. San Diego State had a first-and-10 at the UH 21. Two plays later, Pumphrey set up a first-and-goal from the 8 with a 13-yard run. On third-and-9, Chapman scrambled to keep the play alive before finding a wide-open Truxton in the back of the end zone for the score. Baron added the PAT to make it 14-0 with 1:59 left in the period. San Diego State’s opening two scoring drives were a combined 19 plays for 163 yards. Pumphrey accounted for 85 of those on 10 carries.

Hawaii’s second drive also got off to a poor start thanks to another holding penalty on the kickoff setting up first and 10 from its own 10. At this point, the offense needed to give the defense a break with at least a first down or two. But instead, it was quick three-and-out as the quarter came to an end.

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  • Just awaiting Allie’s post. It should go something like this:
    UH is a sub-par team going up against a solid San Diego State team.
    UH needs to consider ridding the university of athletics as this is an academic university.

    Someday her degree will be utilized in seeing the bigger picture of how important our Football team is to the University as well as the state.
    Someday!

      • I would rather say it’s an opportunity for State revenue, prestige, and student athletes. UH should routinely be a top 20 team. A successful athletic program supports the entire University; it’s Big business. Fans don’t fly to HI for the day. The Islands make a lot of money off tourism. In my opinion, it’s mind boggling why the State and/or the University doesn’t see the potential of the football program. If they did, jj would likely still be the coach, but, obviously, they didn’t commit to the program.

        • You’re correct about the potential for the State. Now tell me why I should be charged $50 per semester without my consent for a football team that means nothing to me?

        • Cellodad, yes. why should the AD raise the student athletic fee to support the department debt? Most of the student don’t even go to the game so why charge them. Time for the AD to earn his $200K plus by increasing the donation and fun raising efforts. As in previous article, the total UHM student fees are around $450 and raising $50 to $500 per semester equal the UC system.

        • Good ones. It’s effectively a big tax on all students to support the fantasies and entertainment of others.

        • Stop making up fairy tale. JJ ran away and if you’re a rational fan you would see it. No one chase him away. He knew the Sugar Bowl was the ultimate and there is no way he can equal that. He took the money and ran with it knowing the chance of him equaling that year mark was zero to none. But instead of telling the truth he tell a tale to gullible fans such as yourself to convince you that it was the State’s fault and not him trying to take the money. Keep dreaming, we’re not Bama, we’re not Ohio State, unless we can finish in the top 20 for 5 straight years then maybe the blue chips will consider coming here. What are the odds of that happening? JJ was a good coach for UH, but a man with many flawed characters. Stop trying to make it looks like he can walk on water.

        • Fiscal, the past is the past. JJ and Miano both applied for the head coaching job after Chow and Maitlin chose Rolo over JJ and Miano. I felt Maitlin should have moved heaven and earth to convince JJ, Miano AND Rolo to coach UH TOGETHER after Chow, with JJ as head coach but his salary would be almost equal to assistant coaches Miano and Rolo. I hope Rolo and his coaches prove me wrong and make me look stoopid and show he was the correct choice over JJ and Miano but bad losses like this does not make his case. What is worse is SA writers will blame the players, in their attempt to protect Rolo and his coaches, which PO’s fans and further turns fans off to UH, beyond just the bad loss. Even WORSE the 2 games lost that they had a good chance winning and such a lopsided loss to San Diego makes it that much harder for top blue chip recruits from Hawaii and the mainland to want to play at UH. There are 3 battlefronts that novice Rolo must succeed: Winning >50% games to make the homer bowl, win the hearts and minds of fans to financislly support the team AND make the homer bowl or possibly the conference and don’t get blown out by teams like Boise or San Diego State to convince key Hawaii and mainlnad high school blue chip recruits to allow UH to compete with teams like San Diego State, Boise and BYU for the win. If Rolo cannot break out of this vicious losing cycle very soon, he will NEVER break out and will follow Chow to failure and oblivion.

        • A recent article in the Star Advertiser pointed out that the UH athletic program has been in the red for the past six years running. While major universities with wealthy alumni may benefit from their sports programs, the UH is not in the position to realize such largess.

    • Allie would love BYU-Hawaii in Laie….they are doing away with all Athletc Sports come Spring 21017, the millions they save will bring 500 more International students into two new three storied dorms…..managed by Brandon Akana (remember him from UH BBall days)

    • They should have inserted Harris for Lakalaka in the 2nd half. With Lakalaka in it was pass all the way and defense just went nuts. Harris would have made them watch the run and pass.

      • I think UH needs a new offensive coordinator. We basically run up the middle, or look for Kemp, sometimes Ursua and Collie back to his Hands of Stone days. No flare passes to the backs, no screens, no shovel passes, just the occasional end around. We can’t stop some of these teams right now and I get that. But we can have more imagination on offense, that’s for sure.

  • Don’t follow football as i do WVB AND WBB .I didn’t expect them to win this game today, in fact at the start of the season i picked them to be below 500 because of a new coach and staff.

  • It was a tough loss to watch, but give the ‘Bows credit for hanging in. I’m not sure if it was my imagination but it looked like Dru Brown was struggling with his throwing motion. In my humble opinion, it was predominantly upper body and his lower body (core) was not firing. Running game was lacking with only having Lakalaka (thunder) pounding it out and no St Juste (lightening) to balance out the running game…it was tough. By the way, how come no mention of Navy’s victory over ND?

    • You’re right Dru Brown struggled is an understatement and at least 3 of his other passes should’ve been picked off but the back up Aztec Dbs simply dropped the balls. Brown is not the answer for sure. Weak arm and no ability to throw the out pattern with any zip. He will be exposed even more this week against Boise State. Maybe Ikaika Woolsey and Aaron Zhawlan should take more practice snaps this week and blackmurano is right as well; Brian Smith is terrible. Put in Harris or St. Juste instead of the slow Lakalaka.

      UH has very little D1 or FBS talent. We would probably be a middle of the road FCS team.

  • There is no excuse at all for our Warrior football team to not put points on the scoreboard in this blowout. Brian Smith who coachs the Offensive side and does the play calling, should definetley be replaced, period!. I suggest that ex St. Louis Crusader and former Warrior Craig Stutzman who also coach the Offensive side with Brian smith should be the one calling the plays. Total embarrsesment on a Warrior football team that showed promise when they upset Air force on the road two weeks ago. But today’s 55-0 blowout just blows my mind on why it happened.
    Boise State comes to town this Saturday…another possible blowout on a very weak defense and poor play calling.

    To Coach Rolo: Replace Smith with Stutz!!!

        • San Diego State is much better, or playing much better, than Boise State. They should be ranked this week, likely ahead of Boise.

        • @roughrider And even if SDSU doesn’t crack the top 25 this week, if they win out, beating Nevada, Wyoming and Colorado State, I’m pretty sure they’ll end the season ranked ahead of Boise State, since BSU did after all lose to Wyoming. That being said, realistically, UH could go 6-7 this year–not bad considering 2 of those loses came at the hands of ranked teams, #2 Michigan and #24 Boise State, while SDSU could also be ranked as you mentioned. Cal, although unranked, is a pretty good team as they upset Texas when they were ranked as well as Utah who is currently ranked #16. So even though the odds of Hawaii playing in a postseason bowl looks dim, if they can win their last two games, their record will be respectable in my book. Go Warriors!

    • What makes you think Stutzman will be any better? Our coaching staff is very young and the oldster coach Lempa is struggling with the caliber of players we have. Rolo needs to recruit, which Hawaii has a hard time doing. When our cream of the crop players don’t stay home it is very difficult for our University. We may get 2 more wins this year and hopefully a 6 or 7 win season next year. I was at the game and it cracked me up when Rolo thru his clip board in the air during the second half. The players actually showed no hustle from the very start of the game. Losing has become contagious over the last 4 1/2 years, don’t care what Rolo says, talk is still cheap. I don’t see a 30,000 plus crowd at Aloha Stadium for a long time. I’ll be there as always!

  • Dru hasn’t had it in 3 of the last 4 games. He telegraphs his passes, doesn’t move through his progression, and forces passes into double and triple coverage. In all but one instance in the second half, he stared down the receiver he was passing to making it easier for the DBs to move in and double or triple team him. Because he didn’t move through his progression he missed some wide open receivers down field. Starting Lakalaka was also a mystery. The OL isn’t developed enough where you would expect them to outmuscle SD State and allow big runs up the middle. Don’t know what the OC was thinking. SD State’s offense is run oriented so its Defense is accustomed to defending the run in practice, trying to run against proved to be a big mistake.

    • IRT pacificsports: Good point about SD pass coverage. I noticed 2 0r more defensemen guarding the receiver Dru was targeting, which means others had to be wide open. I was again surprised that UH has no screen plays, shovel pass, or even draw plays. Do they even have such plays in their playbook? The worst call of the game was 4th and 1, and with only one receiver to the right, running Lakalaka straight into the box with their entire line keying on the runner. A slow, direct hand off. That did remind me of Coach Chow. The team looked tired, running at 3/4 speed.

  • How fickle the masses are, from dreaming about going to a bowl to outrage over how bad the team is. All of you need to join the SA knuckleheads and live in lala land like they do. Told you this is a “grin and bear it” year. You can’t stop a runaway train heading off the track so quickly, can you? 4 wins so far is what most sane people predicted with season total at 5 wins, 6 if extremely lucky. Be happy with that and visible improvements on offense, almost none on defense. What the heck all you cry babies expect? Get real!

    • Hold on, it was NOT posters that thought UH would win their conference or make their homer bowl but SA and their sport writers hyping the possibility that Rolo in his 1st season might win their conference and make their homer bowl. It was also SA writers drumming up the notion that Rolo was underpaid and deserved an immediate pay raise. With San Diego State the problem was not that UH lost but how they lost 55-0 which is the most disturbing.

      • Yes, the SA comments about Rolo’s salary was completely out of line, IMO. Why is UH so anxious to give long contracts to unproven coaches? Chow was never a head coach. Rolo was never a Head coach. The writers are acting like salaries are assigned to positions, ala Teacher’s Union. It just seems like the expectations of UH Football are very low. Who’s in charge?

        • “salaries are assigned to positions, ala Teacher’s union” Aren’t most salaries assigned by positions? The military, the police force, fire department, fast food places, restaurants, construction, large corporations? Sorry to be so picky but I don’t think unions should be tied to this argument about a struggling team that is making a good effort against teams of equal abilities and being over powered by those with better skills. Although, if college players were unionized…oh, never mind. Go Bows!

        • IRT inHilo: No, coaches salaries are not, and should not, be assigned to “positions”. This is not the Soviet Union (at least not yet). Salaries should be based on performance. In fact, even teachers salaries should be based on performance, IMO. So, should all coaches make the average salary of head coaches? Or should they all make the same as the lowest, or maybe 7 million a year, like some of the highest. I am interested in your thoughts.

  • Yes we got waxed today,but remember this team was picked to finish last in the MWC. It is a work in progress. With the offense sputtering and giving up points, the defense was on the field way to long. When that happens you usually get blown out. Would have liked to see Woolsey come in instead of Zwahlen being he’s more mobile. Woolsey’s struggles came against better teams than San Diego St.

    • Yes thats true, Ca, Michigan and Arizona exposed UH’s O line and the lack of a consistent running game made Woolsey and UH’s pass offense tres’ predictable. But Woolsey still has to be more accurate if he gets another chance and can’t keep sailing the ball over his sometimes wide open receivers. Don’t know what we can do to make this team more competitive but it will definitely take some time.

  • Now this blow out was needed – that’s what the Warriors get for squandering 2 close games with mistakes. Hope the boys really learn from this and make the adjustments–the season could have been 6-4 right now but for better team effort. All life is survival of the fittest–if you cannot keep up + make improvements + get lucky == your will not survive–that goes for the boys on the field and sidelines and that goes for the coaching. Lets see how they do vs Boise. I am still going to believe in Rolo + the team–if they are less talented and less experienced; then they have to be more disciplined and the coaches had better have a better game plan and schemes…that is how Navy beats ND. Nothing is impossible–we are not expecting the team to walk on water–just every player needs to execute to 100% their assignment 100% of the time–like catching the football and holding on to the football…basic stuff like that should be “automatic”. I dont even care if the team loses to Boise by 100 points or 200 points–if they dont learn–both players and coaches–that is what they deserve. I dont like UMichigan running up the score as they do–not because of huge scores–but because of the potential injurys–just wait till UM loses a key player to an injury when they are UP by 50 points…but i think that if you cant make adjustments to the other team–that is what you deserve.
    UH — coaches and players are still learning how to win–hopefully they will be able to show some improvement from these loses–the close ones and this one. Go Warriors–
    PS: RE: JJ –he had his time; Miano–his time may be coming up–survival of the fittest–if you can’t adapt–you will not survive.

    • Don’t discount older coaches who might have some rough spots. When JJ was most successful at UH didn’t he have a combination of both old and young inexperienced assistant coaches like Mouse Davis, Jerry Glanville, Miano, Aranda and Rolo? I understand many people personally dislike JJ and Miano but I knew one thing for sure. UH after Chow is in such bad shape the likelihood of a completely inexperienced and untested coach with very limited experience and success in recruiting ability will have an extremely difficult chance of being successful because he needs time and slack for his learning curve and the precarious situation UH is now in after Chow, there is ZERO tolerance to provide Rolo’s needed learning curve. People need to put their personal hate aside of JJ and Miano and realize right now ‘nice guy’ Rolo is way over his head like a skilled small wave surfer from California trying to surf 30 foot Waimea for the first time with no previous experience in big wave Oahu north shore surfing.

  • Our tax dollars at work! Face it, folks, our football team is a laughing stock on the mainland, and has been for years – even when we got to a bowl game a few years ago, all we did was demonstrate that we could never have won it. We either need to cut the cord or invest millions we don’t have on a football program. The University needs to focus more on educating people than waste more on this foolishness.

  • The elephant in the room is JJ, who has taken a good Kapolei team and turned it into a great team in his first season as OC. Their game against Punahou last night was a JJ classic. So much fun to watch. Pass, pass, and more pass. The Warriors need JJ more than ever now, and, in this forum, only Cajaybird and Inverse can see it. Hawaii’s O is too predictable. Its ineffectiveness weakens the D, too. I’d suggest hiring JJ as the Warriors’ OC and Miano as DC. Rolo is an excellent HC, and he’s already admitted that he routinely communicates with JJ, his mentor. While we’re at it, I’d suggest hiring Kapolei’s Hernandez as AD. This guy has the smarts and people skills and media savvy that would turn UH athletics around. He attracts talent like a magnet, from players to coaches, and he sees the elephants in the room, too. For a test, bring in JJ and Miano as advisors for the Boise game. I think they’ll make a difference. We might not win, but we’ll see some hope. I don’t know what more JJ has to do to prove that his heart has always been in the right place — right here in the middle of the Pacific. Go Bows!

    • Yes, go Bows! But forget JJ. If you consider the Bows’ offense too predictable, why would we want someone who is just as predictable? “a JJ classic…Pass, pass and more pass.” If it’s a classic, it’s predictable. Remember the Sugar Bowl and SMU. Forget JJ. Give the new team a chance.

  • What I don’t get is that San Diego State is ranked number 2 in the nation against the run, and yet Hawaii still wanted to run up the middle, it just makes no sense what so ever they actually try to run the ball at all, didn’t they study the tape about how South Alabama beat San Diego State, I was watching the game and U.H. seem to be moving the ball when they were throwing the short passes 5 yards at a time, they will be lucky if they win two out of the next three games left on the schedule, better luck next year Rolo.

  • Dropped passes. For sure there were some. A few weeks back, the receivers were faulted for trying to catch passes with their bodies and not with just their hands. Drops occurred yesterday, but it resulted in the same receivers trying to use their hands. Old habits are hard to break, but I was glad to see the effort. A work in progress for sure, but it will pay off in time.

  • UH football has been an embarrassment, and has been for years. Hawaii is not going to recruit good football players when players can get recruited to far better mainland teams. That is the reality Hawaii faces. The players at UH are at the same level as high school players on the mainland. Stop the madness, close the program. Big waste of money.

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