HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawai’i football team will look to keep its West Division hopes alive when they travel to UNLV for a pivotal Mountain West match-up with UNLV, on Saturday.
A win against the Running Rebels on Saturday would make the Rainbow Warriors (6-4, 3-3 MW) bowl eligible for the third time under head coach Nick Rolovich.
“They know the math,” said Rolovich following Tuesday’s practice in Manoa. “They’re was higher aspirations then most of the years, as far as not really being satisfied with just getting to a bowl, it’ll be a great experience once we get it done, but they know to get that, we have to win this game at UNLV.”
The teams are playing for the Island Showdown Trophy, which UH won last season at Aloha Stadium following a 35-28 victory in Honolulu.
Quarterback Chevan Cordeiro came off the bench and spurred a fourth quarter comeback, leading the Warriors to 22 unanswered points.
The Running Rebels have struggled this season as UNLV’s 0-5 record in the conference, has them ranked dead last in the West Division.
However Cordeiro says the Warriors aren’t taking anyone lightly.
“It doesn’t really matter about the record,” said Cordeiro. “They all play hard, they all run hard and we have to bring our A-game.”
Saturday’s match-up against UNLV will also be a home-coming for Warriors defensive back Ikem Okeke.
Okeke, is a Las Vegas native, who graduated from perennial prep power Bishop Gorman High School before attending the University of Hawai’i.
As a senior, Okeke is looking forward to the opportunity to play in his home state one final time.
“This game it means a lot to me,” said Okeke. “I have a lot of family there, it’s the last time that we will be playing in that stadium barring the Las Vegas Bowl. I’m trying to leave that stadium doing something good, so we can get the W and bring the Pineapple back home.”
Kick-off between the Warriors and UNLV is set for Saturday Nov. 16 at 1:00 p.m. PT (11:00 am HT) at Sam Boyd Stadium.