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Grading the Game - Hawaii

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Quarterback

Keith Price was absolutely marvelous with the exception of the pick six which prevented the Huskies from putting this one away early. He proved he could throw long and he was also able to put some mustard on the ball when it was needed. He made a few mistakes here and there but you have to be impressed with the way he leads the team. Keep in mind that it was only his third game as a starter and he is going to continue to improve.  Grade A Minus

Running Backs

Chris Polk ground out tough yards all day when it was needed as he finished above the century mark once again. Jessie Callier was solid as usual and provided a big spark returning the ball on special teams. Johri Fogerson returned to action this week playing for the first time in about a year. Bishop Sankey spent the day playing on special teams. Jonathan Amosa did a nice job blocking but didn't get a carry or a reception this week at FB.  Grade A

Receivers

Everybody showed up on fire for the game. Devin Aguilar had five receptions to lead the team including a 59 yard highlight catch. Jermaine Kearse has two early TD receptions and didn't show any ill effects from being knocked out of the game last week. ASJ flashed his potential with three grabs with one going for 47 and another for a TD. Price used nine different receivers which shows that he was seeing the field well and guys were getting open. Kearse was doubled most of the game but give Price credit for not trying to force the ball to him.  Grade A

Offensive Line

They were better this week but there is still a lot of room for improvement and they are going to need to improve quickly with Nebraska coming up next week in Lincoln. Overall I think the kids sustained their blocks better this week. Kohler and Porter looked to be improved.  Grade B

Defensive Line

We saw improvement but they really didn't start reaching the quarterback until late in the fourth quarter. Better late than never but maybe it is more of a scheme thing. Once Holt started blitzing the corners good things started to happen. The Huskies held Hawaii to only 55 yards on the ground so they did their job in that department. Ta'amu still isn't playing at the level he was at the end of last season...perhaps that is because he isn't playing in tandem with a healthy Tokolahi. Andrew Hudson showed us some good stuff this week and Haouli Jamora was his usual impressive self.  Grade B

Linebacker

Cort Dennison had twelve tackles and forced a fumble which prevented a Hawaii touchdown. Cort is obviously in a class by himself this year as a Husky linebacker. Short little passes seem to really eat this unit up but I saw improvement this week. This week they get to compete more against the run and I expect the unit as a whole to settle down. Lets face it playing Eastern and Hawaii back to back is a challenge because of the high octane passing game. Grade C Plus

Secondary

The return of Quinton Richardson helped and the unit as a whole was improved over last week. That being said they need to keep improving week to week to give the huskies a chance against Pac 12 powered air attacks. Desmond Trufant had perhaps his finest game as a Husky in my opinion. He really got after it out there and that two point touch back return was a thing of beauty. The safeties played better this week. I really liked the way that Sean Parker looks back there. He needs more reps but he is going to be special before he leaves. Grade C Plus

Special Teams 

Take away the rugby style punt and one long Hawaii kickoff return and it was a good day overall for this group. You can tell that they have improved from last season. Callier is a definite return threat. Kasen Williams is still trying to find himself as a punt returner. Two blocked PAT's with the final one being returned by Trufant for two was awesome. Grade B Plus

Coaching

The kids were definitely ready to play this week so all the hard work paid off and the team is 2-0 for the first time since 2007. Sark called a great game in the first half. It should have been 35-7 at the half if the 14 point swing of the pick six hadn't happened. I thought he was too conservative in the third quarter and the team seemed to tighten up because of it.

Defensively the team showed emotion and played better. Getting stops on third is still a big adventure and the lack of a consistent pass rush is putting a lot of pressure on the secondary. I liked how Holt called the fourth quarter and wondered why he didn't call it that way all day. Once he started doing some corner blitzes it really took Moniz out of his rhythm.  Grade B