Rainbow Warriors breakout the ice buckets in preparation for Wyoming

Rainbow Warriors breakout the ice buckets in preparation for Wyoming
(Image: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - It was a typically sunny, dry, 85-degree morning in Manoa on Tuesday. Ideal for playing football, but a far cry from what the Rainbow Warriors know to expect when they head to Laramie, Wyoming to take on the Cowboys this weekend. So, head coach Nick Rolovich had to make do, breaking out buckets of ice water to prepare his team for the rainy, 40-degree night they're expecting at War Memorial Stadium on Saturday.

"We get enough rain where we probably get enough work with wet [footballs]," said Rolovich. "But, the cold, all of that stuff - that's as cold as we can make it right now. Just lucky to live in Hawaii."

The cold and the rain won't be the only external factors the Rainbow Warriors will have to manage when heading up to Laramie. Hawaii will also have to adjust to Wyoming's elevation. At 7,220 feet, War Memorial Stadium sits at the highest altitude of any venue in the FBS. But, U.H. says they're trying not to place too much emphasis on any of those environmental elements.

"We know it's going to be cold, we know it's going to be wet, we know it's going to be altitude," said Rolovich. "But, this is who wants it more. This is who physically and mentally is tough enough to withstand whatever it's going to take to win this football game. I don't want to harp on it too much. But, I want these guys to be aware of what they're getting into."

Most of the Rainbow Warriors are no strangers to playing at high elevations. Last year Hawaii pulled off a 34-27 win over Air Force at Falcon Stadium which resides at 6,621 feet - so U.H.'s players say they have some idea of what to expect.

"I'm sure when we'll get up there we'll run a lot like we did at Air Force [last year]," said quarterback, Dru Brown. "We'll run enough - to the point that we'll feel confident to play the game... You can't control where we're playing. But we can run. We can get used to it."

Brown said getting a "W" at elevation last year provides a certain sense of confidence for the 'Bows heading into Laramie.

"It gives us the confidence that we can do it for sure," added Brown. "Anytime you get a win... it let's you know that it's a possibility."

Hawaii will have one more day of practice in Manoa. The Rainbow Warriors leave for the continent on Wednesday night and have two days of practice to help get acclaim mated in Wyoming before Saturday's game.

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