MANOA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Despite Friday's 51-31 season-opening loss against California's Golden Bears, University of Hawaii football fans aren't feeling defeated.
"Hawaii fans are very hopeful with a lot of aloha and a lot of pride," said Kaulana Lukela. "Going to our games, backing them up and being appreciative for where we are and how the players are playing."
"I'll be happy with 6-6 or even 5-7," said Ekahi Niles. "It will be an improvement from the 3-10 or whatever we were last year."
Fans held local watch parties Friday, getting their first look at the team under Nick Rolovich's new leadership.
"I want to see the team's comradery around the new coach," Devin Philips said. "I want to see the players really play for each other. I think if they can do that, the season will be a success."
Even former UH football player Ikaika Alama-Francis came to catch the game at Tropics Tap House. "I always bleed the Hawaii Warriors, so I'm just excited to see this new season coming up."
Friday's game marked the first time in school history the Rainbow Warriors played on foreign soil. Fans say it's a great opportunity to showcase Hawaii's pride.
"It's giving us a chance to make our mark abroad and that's a really good thing for us," said UH student Kaleilehua Dinwiddie Kala.
"It should be, hopefully, an exciting year," Mark Merling said, UH professor. "Everybody is looking forward to return our exciting, competitive UH football."
The Rainbow Warriors will travel to Ann Arbor, Michigan to take on the Wolverines on Saturday, Sept. 3.