UW ready to say ‘aloha’

first_imgThe Wisconsin secondary has struggled all year and Hawaii will offer up a stiff challenge with star wide receiver Greg Salas.[/media-credit]Looking at almost any college football bowl predictions, experts will tell you the Wisconsin football team is headed to the Outback Bowl for a matchup with Auburn.Assuming they beat Hawaii this Saturday.This assumption should not be taken lightly as the Warriors will be fighting for their bowl lives in Aloha Stadium Saturday.After losing its first six conference games to start the season, Hawaii is rolling on a four game winning streak including a momentum-building 24-17 win last weekend.“Well, they were a 2-6 football team that has revived themselves very, very well,” UW head coach Bret Bielema said. “They were 2-6 and … regrouped and have played very well offensively and defensively. They have done some really good things in the kicking game. All four of these last games, none of them have really come easy, so they have earned each one of those victories.”As one of only two teams not to have clinched a bowl or been eliminated from contention — with Army being the other — the Warriors will have plenty of motivation on senior day.Currently on a 3-year bowl streak, the WAC school so far away from everyone will also be fighting to keep alive its hard-earned reputation as a decent football program.“Bottom line, if they win this game they are going to become bowl eligible for a very big bowl themselves,” Bielema said.Averaging 456.1 yards of total offense, including 348.7 yards through the air, the Badger corners will be tested once again. Exposed through mental mistakes against Northwestern two weeks ago, UW’s secondary will have to bounce back fairly quickly.Its first challenge? Stopping junior wide receiver Greg Salas, an offensive dynamo responsible for 103 receptions, 1,559 yards and eight touchdowns this season.“Our front four has to give pressure to help out our back end,” Bielema added.Given a bye week, Wisconsin has taken the same approach to fixing mistakes that they have all season.Hard work, hard work and, well… you know the rest.“Just like in the offseason we just know we have to work harder,” UW running back Zach Brown said. “It was a tough loss, but we are using the bye week time to get better.”Playing in a stadium four time zones away, the Badgers will face a host of challenges trying to stay prepared.Besides exams and warm weather serving as distractions, UW will also have to avoid looking toward the looming bowl game.“Honestly, we aren’t thinking about no bowl game,” Brown said. “We are worrying about Hawaii. That is our biggest game and we can’t look ahead. We just got to make sure we take care of Hawaii.”Not to be all business and no fun, Bielema has designated time for the players to relax and see the sites.Perhaps to inspire leadership, he mentioned going to Pearl Harbor.“The hard part for us is, because it is an extended stay, it has similarities to a bowl game,” Bielema said. “But obviously the game is going to be on us very, very quick. So we told our guys it is about focusing on the details of what we need to do to win Saturday.”“I am really excited,” Brown added. “Growing up, I was never a real big traveler and I never thought I would have a chance to go to Hawaii, so being able to do this is great and I am looking forward to it.”last_img read more

Fair scores career high as Syracuse suffers 1st loss of season

first_img Published on December 22, 2012 at 5:34 pm Contact Chris: cjiseman@syr.edu | @chris_iseman Related Stories TEMPLE OF DOOM: Free throws cost Syracuse as Orange suffers 1st loss of the season to TempleGallery: Syracuse loses first game of season to Temple in Gotham Classic NEW YORK – C.J. Fair tried to singlehandedly lead Syracuse to a win. At both ends of the floor, Fair showed perhaps the most aggressiveness he has all season. When the game was over, though, the thought of what could’ve been is what lingered.Fair scored a career-high 25 points, grabbed seven rebounds and hit all eight of his free-throw attempts in his 38 minutes on the floor in Syracuse’s 83-79 loss to Temple Saturday. Where the Orange struggled as a team, Fair shined. He tried to bring Syracuse back, but his efforts weren’t enough and the few mistakes he made were what stood out.He started the game off with a thunderous dunk on the back end of an alley-oop that gave Syracuse a 4-2 lead. From that point on, Fair controlled the Orange’s offense.“I got going early, so I just had to be aggressive,” Fair said. “Mike (Carter-Williams) and Brandon (Triche) did a good job finding me. In the second half, it was just time to be aggressive but you just hate to come up short.”Fair’s performance was the only thing that really let Syracuse even have a chance at winning. The Orange shot 12 3-pointers and only hit two of them, missed 15 free throws and perhaps most importantly, Carter-Williams had nowhere to pass.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Owls limited his passing options by not moving off their assignments to help guard Carter-Williams. So they turned him into a scorer instead of a passer, and he scored only six points from the field.“They didn’t come off to help. He’s got to finish those,” head coach Jim Boeheim said. “He missed some good looks, he got some good opportunities.”With Carter-Williams – and basically the entire Syracuse lineup – struggling, someone had to step up. Fair took the assignment.With 5:17 left in the first half, Fair made a huge block on Temple forward Jake O’Brien, then drove the lane hard at the other end for a layup, but was fouled by Quenton DeCosey. He hit both free throws to give Syracuse a 29-26 lead.He then hit two straight jumpers, sandwiching a 3-pointer from Khalif Wyatt, to give Syracuse a four-point lead with 3:54 left in the first half.“He was very aggressive. He was able to get the ball in the lane. I think he got fouled a lot. I think he’s one of the guys that actually made his free throws,” Triche said. “With him being so aggressive, it definitely helped our team out, just him playing at a high level.”He hit two more free throws and a jumper from the top of the lane to help Syracuse take a two-point lead into the locker room at halftime.Fair also kept Temple from making its lead insurmountable for the Orange. He fought through contact and made a layup with 14:05 left that cut Temple’s lead to four.His biggest points came toward the end of the game.With three minutes left, he knocked down a 3-pointer from the left corner that brought SU within two. Temple guard Scootie Randall then missed a 3 at the other end and Fair grabbed the rebound. He went to take another 3 from the same spot on the floor as his previous make, faked, and began a baseline drive for what would’ve been an open layup.Instead, he stepped out of bounds. When the game was over, Fair sat back in his locker and said that was the play that stands out in his mind. Not the 3-pointer that sent a charge through the Madison Square Garden crowd.On a day where he scored 25 points and played almost flawlessly at both ends of the floor, it was that final missed chance that bothered Fair. He had a stellar performance that pretty much went to waste.“The thing that’s in the back of my mind is the play after when I, same situation, stepped out of bounds,” Fair said. “I think I should’ve shot it. That play hurt us.” Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more