Thursday, October 16, 2003
WAC showdown features high-powered aerial attacks
RUSTON, La. -- Either Hawaii will figure out how to win on
the road or Louisiana Tech will figure out how to win at home, but
either way something has to give.
Hawaii (3-3, 2-1 Western Athletic Conference) has lost its last
three road games, while Tech (3-3, 1-2) has lost its last three at
An air war likely will decide which one of these streaks comes
to an end when the two teams meet Saturday. Hawaii leads the WAC in
passing. Quarterback Timmy Chang is first in the conference and
third nationally in total offense at 330 yards per game.
Tech quarterback Luke McCown isn't far behind. He doesn't run as
much but throws for more than 300 yards per game.
"You've got two of the best passing teams in the country being
led by two great quarterbacks," Tech head coach Jack Bicknell
Chang became the 25th player in college history to reach 10,000
career passing yards after throwing for 353 yards against Fresno
State. McCown's 328 yards last week gave him 11,221 for his career,
good for No. 8 on the NCAA's all-time pass yardage list.
Bicknell says he sees many similarities in the two high-flying
"They're more of a pure run-and-shoot system, where they work
their routes depending on coverages. We're not as quite as
sophisticated as they are. We do other things. We play a tight end
a lot more. But the basic concepts are very, very similar in the
passing game," he said.
But it's not just Hawaii's offense that Louisiana Tech is
"Hawaii is a scary football team, both sides of the ball,"
Bicknell said. "Offensively, they can just wear you out.
Defensively, they're extremely talented, so it's a huge challenge
for our football team."
Both teams won last weekend, the Warriors halting Fresno State
55-18 and the Bulldogs squeaking past Texas-El Paso 38-37.
"We certainly have a challenge going all the way where we're
going against a team that can move the football," Hawaii coach
June Jones said.
Jones said his team has struggled on the road this year, but
defended his road record in the past.
"We're 0-3 on the road but over the past four-five years, we've
won more games than they ever have here, so we're not going to
change what we're doing," he said.