New FSM Preview: UNLV vs Hawai’i – Week 12

Franchise Sports Media

UNLV Rebels (4-6)  |  Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (2-9)


UNLV travels to the big island to take on the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors as both look to get off of lengthy losing streaks.


UNLV vs Hawai'i
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

UNLV is playing nowhere close to the hot start that came at the start of this season. A 4-1 record has now flipped to a subpar, 4-6, and with a trip to the big island, UNLV is at a point where they’ll take any sort of win.

It is unlikely that UNLV will play in any more high stakes, meaningful football this season, outside of a finale with in-state rival UNR in a week. So they’re going to have to find the fire within themselves to get on the jet and avoid the relaxation of the cool beach breeze and focus on the speed of the Rainbow Warriors. 

The Rebels have made some serious strides this season, and after all is said and done, they may be able to go .500 and play in a Bowl. But it all starts with a tough trip three hours back in time in Hawaii against a team that has looked about as chaotic as they come.


Hawaii’s 2-9 record is nowhere near as ugly as the season has been.


UNLV vs Hawai'i
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

The Rainbow Warriors will not just pack it in and let UNLV run them off the island on Saturday. In what has been an ugly season for the Rainbow Warriors, they still can rest their hat on a fast and physical effort.

Unfortunately, they’ve produced the worst statical defense in the conference. It doesn’t get any easier with a bottom-three-ranked offense within the Mountain West, either. There have been games where Hawaii’s effort keeps them in the game. Examples are shown in close single-score margins against San Diego, Wyoming, and, most recently, Utah State. There have also been some bad blowouts, though too, like the previous 55-13 loss to Fresno State or even back against Vanderbilt when they lost 63-10.

It has been all an uphill climb for the Rainbow Warriors, but in the battle for the Golden Pineapple, they will give UNLV their best shot.


UNLV to get a win and defend Golden Pineapple


UNLV vs Hawai'i
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

On paper, UNLV handles Hawaii and puts up numbers as they did back in September. But that isn’t how this business works. The Rebels played their best game in the loss to Fresno State on this losing streak, with no turnovers, and the star duo of Aiden Robbins and Doug Brumfield was duly noted.

Defensively though, they were a couple of lapses, and the steady shoulders of the Rebels’ defense have begun to weigh heavily throughout this campaign. Taking on an atrocious Hawaii defense, the Rebels’ offense may very well give the defense a much easier day by potentially jumping out to a quick lead or just controlling more of the field position than we have all seen on this losing streak.

The season had not gone the way they had liked it to when they were 4-1 and catching eyes across the Mountain West. Yet, the Rebels can still close the book on this season on a high note, and it all starts by defending their Golden Pineapple.


UNLV travels to Hawaii to take on the Rainbow Warriors Saturday at 8:00 pm. The game can be seen on Cox 125/Over-The-Air At 5.1.

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Brandon Steele – Franchise Sports Media

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