Hawaii managed to pull off a huge upset at home over Arizona football. Here are three things to take away from the Rainbow Warriors’ victory.
The opening day of the college football season wrapped up with a high-scoring thriller from the Hawaiian Islands, as Arizona traded punches with the Rainbow Warriors at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu. From the outset, it was the Mountain West hosts rather than the Pac-12 visitors that looked ready to make a run in 2019 as Hawaii jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter.
Arizona rebounded in the second quarter, putting three touchdowns on the board to narrow the gap to 28-21 at the intermission. Coming out of the break, the Wildcats continued to struggle moving the football consistently down the field. The defense was critical, as they helped keep Arizona in the game and kept Hawaii from running away in a blowout.
Ultimately, the Rainbow Warriors were almost doomed by their own mistakes, as they tried to sabotage their upset bid with a slew of turnovers. The visiting Wildcats, though, were unable to capitalize as they coughed up the ball a few times themselves.
When the dust settled in Honolulu, Hawaii found a way to survive and snatch a key statement victory over a Power Five opponent. With the 45-38 victory, the Rainbow Warriors set themselves up as one of the Group of Five teams to beat this season while Arizona finds itself in an early deficit before Pac-12 play even begins.
What should we take away from this contest? Here are three lessons we learned on Saturday night in the nightcap from Hawaii.