Colorado State Rams vs. Hawaii Rainbow Warriors
Date and Time: Saturday, September 30, 2017, 11:59 p.m. ET
Location: Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, HI
Opening College Football Odds: Colorado State -7
Colorado State vs. Hawaii TV Coverage: Local
Hawaii is 2-2 this season, but we have a hunch that it’s going to ultimately find its way to a bowl game anyway this year. The Rainbow Warriors were game on the offensive side of the ball against UCLA at the Rose Bowl, and they hung right in there against Wyoming and arguably should have won the game if not for an oddly tipped pass that ended in the game-clinching interception.
Now back at home, the Warriors are where they’re most comfortable for sure. It’s Colorado State that has to take the long flight to the other side of the Pacific, and that generally makes things a little uncomfortable.
That said, these Rainbow Warriors are no joke this year. Diocemy Saint Juste is one of the top running backs in the nation with his 554 yards, while John Ursua is one of the top receivers with his 453 yards. The depth isn’t there for sure, but the superstars around Dru Brown are all playing at a very high level thus far this season.
Colorado State actually put a reasonable fight against Alabama in its last game, losing 41-23. It’s unlikely that anyone else is going to put up that many points against the Crimson Tide any time in the near future, especially after watching them obliterate Vanderbilt in Nashville last weekend.
Give Mike Bobo this much: he hasn’t been afraid to tackle the big boys this year. First it was Oregon State, then Colorado, and now most recently, Alabama. Slipping back into Mountain West play should be a joy for a team that many feel can win this conference this year.
The fact that Nick Stevens is leading the nation’s No. 20 ranked passing attack at 308.0 yards per game is telling for sure. This schedule has obviously been no joke, and Stevens has hung in there against the best in America.
The senior has his flaws for sure, including the fact that he has tossed 23 career interceptions. His completion percentage is down at just 58.5 percent, while his 7.5 yards per pass attempt average is a career-worst.
Still, this was the business part of the schedule that he just survived. From here, it’s all easy. Stevens’ passing yards per game might not increase, but his efficiency almost certainly will. It’s going to be crucial to stay at a high level for the whole 60 minutes against Hawaii with as quickly as the Rainbow Warriors can score, but we don’t doubt that Stevens is up to the challenge.
Colorado State vs. Hawaii Free Picks
The Rams are almost a little too public in this game for our liking at all of the top online sportsbooks. Early returns are showing over 70 percent of the bets on Colorado State, yet this line isn’t budging off of that opening number set at a touchdown.
Stevens is great, and the team around him could be amongst the best 30 or 40 in the nation. That doesn’t mean it’s a good enough team yet to go on the road and beat Hawaii when it is the hunted team for a change instead of the hunting club.
The Rainbow Warriors have said all the right things in the media this week about getting back home and playing in front of the friendly faces in the 50th state for a change after three brutal road games and a home affair against an FCS foe. We think they’ll put this one in the win column deep into the night.
College Football ATS Pick: Hawaii +7 at BookMaker.eu
College Football Score Prediction: Hawaii 38, Colorado State 31