HONOLULU (AP) -- Hawaii receiver Jason Rivers knew his team would
have a big night, and he even shared his thoughts with his
"I was in the zone. I felt it from the beginning of the game,"
Rivers said. "I walked up to my cornerback and said, 'That's how
we're feeling tonight and that's how we're coming."
Timmy Chang threw for 376 yards and a career-high six
touchdowns, including four to Rivers, as Hawaii kept its bowl hopes
alive by defeating Idaho 52-21 Saturday night.
Rivers caught all four of his touchdowns in the first half and
finished with nine receptions for 167 yards for the Warriors (5-5).
"We went out there today and we were like unconscious," Rivers
said. "We did what we had to do. The O-Line did great. Timmy
stepped up in the pocket. He was on the money. You couldn't help
but catch the ball."
Down 14-10, Chang threw touchdowns of 22, 16, 13 and 15 yards in
the decisive second quarter to give the Warriors a 38-21 lead at
At the break, Chang was 15-of-21 for 292 yards and five
touchdowns. He sat out most of the fourth quarter and finished
"He had some beautiful passes," Idaho coach Nick Holt said.
"He was exactly what I thought he was. He's a good player and we
knew that going in."
Chang said it was good to be home.
"I think the guys are really comfortable being here. I know I
feel comfortable at home," Chang said. "We just play better
Hawaii is 5-1 at Aloha Stadium and 0-4 on the road.
"Unfortunately on the road, we're very fragile mentally,"
Hawaii coach June Jones said.
With his six-touchdown performance, Chang overtook Marshall's
Chad Pennington for fourth on the NCAA career TD pass list. The
fifth-year senior now has 105 TDs and is chasing Ty Detmer's NCAA
mark of 121.
Chang already owns the NCAA career marks for passing yards,
completions, attempts and interceptions thrown.
The Vandals got off to a quick start, using trickery to score on
their first two possessions.
A fake field goal kept the Vandals' opening drive alive and led
to an 8-yard TD pass from Michael Harrington to Bobby Bernal-Wood
that gave Idaho a 7-3 lead.
Five plays later, wideout Desmond Belton caught a lateral pass
and threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to fellow receiver Christian
Populis to put Idaho up 14-10 after one quarter.
But Hawaii's passing game erupted in the second quarter.
Chang threw two touchdown passes of 22 and 16 yards to Rivers
and connected with Britton Komine on a 13-yard pass to give the
Warriors a 31-14 lead.
Hawaii scored its fourth TD of the second quarter on a 15-yard
touchdown pass to Rivers.
The Warriors, who have one of the worst defenses in the nation,
recorded a school-record 10 sacks and shut out the Vandals in the
"Credit to those guys. They did a nice job of getting us,"
Holt said. "Surprised we didn't get any points in the second half.
We needed it."
Idaho picked off two of Chang's passes in Hawaii territory, but
was unable to convert. The Vandals also blew a chance to cut
Hawaii's lead just before the half when Willie Sipoloa fumbled on
the Warriors' 5.
Bernal-Wood had nine receptions for 139 yards for Idaho. He
needed just eight receptions in the game to break the school's
35-year-old season record of 95 catches set by Jerry Hendren.
The Vandals (3-9) closed out their first season under Holt and
final year in the Sun Belt Conference. They are joining the Western
Athletic Conference next year.
The game also concluded the career of legendary Vandals voice
Bob Curtis, who began announcing Idaho games in 1947. Curtis, who
turns 80 next month, called 540 consecutive Idaho football games.
Hawaii must beat Northwestern and Michigan State the next two
weeks at Aloha Stadium to qualify for the Hawaii Bowl for the third