UCLA vs Hawaii prediction and game preview.
UCLA vs Hawaii Broadcast
Date: Saturday, August 28
Game Time: 3:30 ET
Venue: Rose Bowl, Pasadena, CA
UCLA (0-0) vs Hawaii (0-0) Game Preview
Why Hawaii Will Win
Everyone might think offense when it comes to Hawaii, but the defensive side was mostly the star in the first season under Todd Graham, and it should be even stronger right out of the gate.
Just about everyone is back.
The offensive side isn’t bad – it’ll be more balanced than sensational – but with just about all of the 2020 tackles made by Rainbow Warrior defenders accounted for, it really is about the D.
The bulk is there for the Hawaii defensive front, there’s speed in the back eight, and there should be just enough generated pressure to be a problem for the Bruin backfield.
UCLA’s quarterback situation should be fine no matter what, but not having Dorian Thompson-Robinson for the first few fall practices – out for an undisclosed reason – isn’t a plus. However …
Why UCLA Will Win
Again, the quarterback situation is fine. Thompson-Robinson is the veteran who knows what he’s doing, but the Bruins are deep at the position.
The offense is loaded with veterans – the receiving corps should be UCLA’s best in a long, long time – and the ground attack should take over early on behind a veteran line with everyone back. However, just like it is for Hawaii, the offense gets the headlines, but it’s the defense that should be the star.
The Bruin defensive front should take over against a line that was way too leaky last season. Even with a few personnel losses, UCLA has the parts to press throughout and turn Hawaii into more of a passing team – it sounds strange for that program, but it really does want to run well.
If the Bruin secondary can keep the momentum going from the end of 2020 when it was picking off just about everything, it should come up big. The chances will be there if the pass rush does what it’s supposed to.
What’s Going To Happen
UCLA has only won one of its last five season-openers – and it took a Josh Rosen epic performance/Texas A&M epic collapse for that to happen in 2017.
Hawaii will be plucky.
It’ll come out great on the defensive front with several big stops and plays in the backfield, and then the Bruin passing game will settle in. It’s not going to be a dominant performance, but UCLA will take over in the second half, win the turnover battle, and pull away late.
UCLA vs Hawaii Prediction, Line
UCLA 38, Hawaii 17
UCLA -17, o/u: 70
ATS Confidence out of 5: 1.5
Must See Rating: 3
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