Sep 24, 2021; Fresno, California, USA; Fresno State Bulldogs wide receiver Jalen Cropper (5) runs the ball against the UNLV Rebels in the third quarter at Bulldog Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

News Articles

Hawaii faces challenge of aerial antics by No. 18 Fresno State

Fresno State had a stellar aerial combo earlier this decade in Derek Carr and Davante Adams, who are both now enjoying standout NFL careers.

Now the No. 18 Bulldogs have another terrific tandem making noise in Jake Haener and Jalen Cropper as they arrive on the Islands to face Hawaii in Mountain West play on Saturday night in Honolulu.

Haener’s 1,842 passing yards are the most in the nation and his 15 touchdown passes are tied for second. Cropper is tied for the national lead with eight scoring catches and with 39 receptions. He also ranks eighth with 455 receiving yards.

The firepower has led Fresno State (4-1, 1-0 Mountain West) to a fast start that includes a 40-37 road win over then-No. 13 UCLA.

Last weekend, the Bulldogs held off UNLV 38-30 as Haener passed for 378 yards and five touchdowns. The scoring passes were the most by a Fresno State quarterback since Carr tossed five or more on four occasions in 2013.

Cropper had 10 catches for 108 yards and matched the school record of four touchdown receptions, joining Adams (twice in 2013), Charlie Jones (1995) and Jim Molich (1942).

“I just feel like there is a lot of trust between me and Jake on and off the field,” Cropper said of the chemistry he has with Haener. “I think going through summer, spring ball and fall camp we had a lot of practices, a lot of time, a lot of chances where we were able to connect on certain plays.

“Getting in the film room and studying a lot of the film on opponents this season, I feel like just everything we do from on and off the field to whatever we do with our relationship, I think that ties in to what we do on the field.”

Haener has moved up the charts in the Heisman race due to his strong start. As of Tuesday, only six players have better odds to win the prestigious award.

Bulldogs coach Kalen DeBoer isn’t surprised that Haener’s candidacy is drawing more support.

“You’ve got to win football games if you’re going to be considered in that realm, in that category,” DeBoer told reporters. “He’s a leader. He’s won football games in big ways. Obviously the stats are something that really draw your attention to what he’s accomplished during this year. It is kind of crazy to think how just consistently week in and week out he’s been overall.”

Fresno State is looking to win in Honolulu for the seventh straight time.

The Rainbow Warriors (2-3, 0-1) also played UCLA this season and were walloped 44-10.

Hawaii recorded a 41-21 road win over New Mexico State last Saturday as standout linebacker Darius Muasau had 11 tackles and two sacks.

Quarterback Chevan Cordeiro ranks fourth nationally with 1,410 passing yards. He has thrown seven touchdowns and six interceptions.

However, the Rainbow Warriors have scored just 50 total points in their three setbacks.

“It’s not a Chevan problem, it’s a team problem,” Hawaii coach Todd Graham said. “I’ve been in this game long enough to know when I’ve got a good product. Everyone out here knows that and our players have a lot of confidence in Chevan.”

Hawaii registered a 34-19 win in Fresno State in last season’s meeting.

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.

Sportsbooks

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Rated 5/5

Upcoming Games

Oct 22nd, 6:00 PM

Middle Tennessee -14.5 -107

UCONN +14.5 -107

@

Oct 22nd, 7:00 PM

Memphis +3 -107

UCF -3 -107

@

Oct 22nd, 9:30 PM

Colorado State -3 -107

Utah State +3 -107

@

Oct 22nd, 10:30 PM

Washington -16.5 -107

Arizona +16.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Massachusetts +35.5 -107

Florida State -35.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Arkansas-Pine Bluff +51.5 -110

Arkansas -51.5 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Eastern Michigan -3 -110

Bowling Green +3 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

NIU +4 -107

Central Michigan -4 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Kansas State -2.5 -107

Texas Tech +2.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Oklahoma (3) -37 -110

Kansas +37 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Cincinnati (2) -26.5 -107

Navy +26.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Northwestern +21.5 -107

Michigan (6) -21.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Illinois +23.5 -107

Penn State (7) -23.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 12:00 PM

Wake Forest (16) -4 -110

Army +4 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 12:30 PM

Syracuse +4 -110

Virginia Tech -4 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 1:00 PM

Kent State -6 -107

Ohio +6 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 2:00 PM

Texas State +10.5 -107

Georgia State -10.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:00 PM

Wisconsin -2.5 -110

Purdue (25) +2.5 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Oklahoma State (8) +6 -107

Iowa State -6 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

LSU +10.5 -110

Ole Miss (12) -10.5 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

BYU -1 -110

Washington State +1 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Colorado +9.5 -110

California -9.5 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Buffalo -12.5 -107

Akron +12.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Miami-OH +7.5 -107

Ball State -7.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Western Michigan -3 -107

Toledo +3 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Oregon (10) -3 -107

UCLA +3 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Rice +23.5 -107

UAB -23.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Clemson -1 -110

Pittsburgh (23) +1 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

Maryland +6 -107

Minnesota -6 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 3:30 PM

New Mexico +20.5 -107

Wyoming -20.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 4:00 PM

Mississippi State -23 -110

Vanderbilt +23 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 4:00 PM

Boston College +6.5 -107

Louisville -6.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 4:00 PM

Liberty -21.5 -107

North Texas +21.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 4:00 PM

East Carolina +12 -110

Houston -12 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

WKU -17.5 -107

Florida International (FIU) +17.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

Tennessee +23.5 -107

Alabama (4) -23.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

UTSA (24) -7 -117

LA Tech +7 -117

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

South Alabama -13.5 -107

Louisiana-Monroe +13.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

Temple +4 -110

USF -4 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

Nevada +1 -107

Fresno State -1 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:00 PM

San Diego State (22) +5.5 -107

Air Force -5.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

South Carolina +17.5 -110

Texas A&M (17) -17.5 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

Utah -3 -110

Oregon State +3 -110

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

NC State (18) -2.5 -107

Miami-FL +2.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

West Virginia +5.5 -107

TCU -5.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

USC +6.5 -107

Notre Dame (13) -6.5 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

Georgia Tech +6 -107

Virginia -6 -107

@

Oct 23rd, 7:30 PM

Ohio State (5) -19 -107

Indiana +19 -107

@

Oct 24th, 12:00 AM

New Mexico State +17.5 -110

Hawaii -17.5 -110

@

Oct 28th, 7:30 PM

Troy

Coastal Carolina (14)

@

Oct 28th, 7:30 PM

USF

East Carolina

@

Oct 29th, 7:30 PM

Navy

Tulsa

@

Oct 29th, 10:00 PM

UNLV

Nevada

@