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College football: Warriors face a battered Wyoming

September 20, 2017 - 12:05am

The Hawaii and Wyoming campuses are geographical opposites — 3,320 miles apart in distance, 7,200 feet in height.

On Monday, both teams began the game-week preparation ahead of Saturday’s Mountain West Conference opener in Laramie.

“I’ve been grinding on tape (of Hawaii) so much, when I left (the office on Sunday) night it was real dark, and when I came in, it was dark (Monday morning),” Wyoming coach Craig Bohl said.

With a bye this past weekend, UH coach Nick Rolovich was able to implement the first installment of the game plan last Friday. While the players had the weekend to rest, the coaches had meetings and video sessions. Instead of the usual conditioning drills on Monday, the Rainbow Warriors had a two-hour practice. The Warriors worked against the scout teams simulating Wyoming’s schemes.

“Not good enough,” Rolovich said of the practice. “I’ve talked to a lot of people about Craig Bohl. I know what he’s gonna do to his team, (and) have his team ready. It’s my job to have this team ready. … It was a little sloppy. I watched guys give great effort. I’m more mad at the guys who aren’t playing, who were supposed to get treatment this week, who didn’t get treatment this weekend. It’s a bad look on them.”

As punishment for the few who missed medical appointments, the rest of the Warriors ran a series of 110-yard sprints after practice. That workout might be beneficial in dealing with Laramie’s breath-taking thin air.

Rolovich said the Warriors will try to mimic the preparation used for last year’s game against Air Force in Colorado Springs (6,035-foot elevation).

“Don’t let them over-eat, make sure they’re hydrated,” Rolovich said. “It’s really a mental thing, if they’re mentally strong enough to fight through that initial altitude gasp. We’ll see.”

The Cowboys are trying to rebound from Saturday’s 49-13 loss to Oregon, during which heralded quarterback Josh Allen was held to 9-for-24 passing for 64 yards and zero touchdowns. Allen appeared to be affected after he was hit on the right arm while throwing in the first half and by an ankle ailment in the fourth quarter.

During Monday’s teleconference, Allen told reporters he is physically fit. “It’s a little sore,” he said of his throwing arm, “but nothing terrible — nothing that probably will prevent me from practicing or even playing this week. It’s not even a question.”

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