HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Rainbow Warriors football team is staying on the mainland this week, as they prepare for their prime time Friday night match up against Wyoming.
The 'Bows are in Colorado for the week, giving the players and coaches the rare opportunity to connect beyond the football field.
“It’s been great because what’s been so hard is that we’ve been separated, I got hired and we spent a couple months together, then that was it, we spent a couple more weeks together in July and then all of a sudden now we’re playing.” Head Coach Todd Graham told reporters after Wednesday’s practice. “You know you’ve got three and a half weeks to to get ready to practice, so you’re grinding and coaching the heck out of these guys, so it’s been nice to sit around and get to know each other, visit with each other, being in the hotel room and traveling was very nice, but i’m impressed with our players and how humble they are.”
After an impressive debut last weekend, the Warriors feel that the extra time together will only strengthen their bond going forward, according to starting quarterback Chevan Cordeiro.
“It’s good just seeing our boys, our teammates, having that bond and just creating it getting stronger, all we can do is stay in the hotel and just be with them, it’s good for us because we get to build our bond and it gets tighter and tighter every time.” Cordeiro said.
In particular, junior defensive lineman Blessman Ta’ala, was able to connect with his roommate more than ever.
“It’s truly amazing to spend time with my teammates, especially my roommate because this is his first time here, so i got to hang out with him and figure out what he likes and what he doesn’t like, just basically get to know each other and it was good to be out here in the cold, practicing over here to get used to the cold and the elevation.” Ta’ala said. “But as practice went along, it got too cold for me, so I was trying to put my hands in my pockets and just practice.”
UH’s Friday night game in Laramie, Wyoming is looking to be a cold one, with temperatures in the 30′s, but for Cordeiro, he’s preparing like any other game.
“Today was our first practice outside, it felt good and it wasn’t too cold, I kind of got used to it after like the first couple of snaps.” Cordeiro said. “I mean we’re just going in there and practicing like how we did in Hawaii, just practicing hard 110 percent, practicing against the defense and just competing against each other.”
No matter the weather, coach Graham says that the opportunity to go out and be on the field is more important than how cold it is.
“You know getting to do this and getting to be a part of a Division I college football program, going to compete at this level and travel around on airplanes, staying in hotels and representing your state and university is a very significant time in their lives.” Coach Graham said. “It’s been great, I’ll tell you I’ve loved and enjoyed this, I’d do this for the next eight weeks.”
The 'Bows kick off from Wyoming at 3:45 p.m. Hawaii time on Fox Sports one.