Coach Arroyo hopes to bring the toughness of discipline, attitude, care-factor, togetherness, the way you work, and new standards of excellence to this team in hopes for a strong season with a great team culture.
The UNLV Rebels start their 2020 football season to a rocky start with a loss of 6-34 against the San Diego State Aztecs, but both the coach and the players are keeping their heads up for improving each week and having a successful season.
During the game, Coach Arroyo played all three quarterbacks, not having picked out a starter for the team yet. Max Gilliam, Justin Rogers, and Kenyon Oblad had good plays during the game and fought to show their worth in the starting position, but it remains a mystery who the position will go to.
When asked which quarterback held the lead for the position, Coach Arroyo stated, “I think Max [Gilliam] started and did a nice job throughout the course. He went back in and did some good things and moved the football in the second half. I was excited to see that… They all did some things that I think they can build on, we’re going to force the competition, we're not going to be casual on our approach at any position.”
The starting quarterback position will hopefully be filled by the end of the season, but until then it’ll be interesting to see the three of them swap plays on the field. For now, the grind continues for the guys with busy workday Sundays after their games.
After battling against the Aztecs, the Rebels didn’t land back in Las Vegas until three in the morning, making it so they couldn’t go to bed until 4 am. The coaches had an early morning getting to the office by 7 am where they graded film that had to be done by 1 pm so they could have those two hours to go through it and prep for their meeting at 3 pm. The players were back in the weight room lifting before 3 pm, and later that evening they were back on the field for strides and adjustments in preparation for the next game.
In the upcoming game, the Rebels get to compete in the Allegiant stadium against the UNR Wolf Pack. Coach Arroyo is new to this rivalry, but growing up in Colfax, California he knows a lot about Coach Ault up in Reno. Even Coach Ault started down here in Vegas, it’ll be interesting to see the two coaches go head to head in Saturday’s game.
This game is not only important for being the next game of the Rebel’s focus, but it is also the battle of rivals for the Fremont Cannon.
For those who may not know, the Fremont Cannon is awarded to the winner of the Battle of Nevada, or better known as the game played by UNR Wolf Pack and UNLV Rebels. Their game on October 31st, 2020 marks the 51st anniversary of the annual battle.
The UNLV Rebels are currently the owners of the Fremont Cannon, putting more pressure on them to defend their title on Saturday.
“We know this is a rivalry game, it will inherently be that way when we get on the field. We will make sure it is important. There’s a cannon in the middle of our weight room waiting to be defended and we’re planning to do that,” Coach Arroyo said.
Due to the current pandemic and health precautions for the students and athletes at the school, the Southern Nevada Health District has approved 3% of Allegiant’s capacity with in-person attendance of 2,000 fans. Although this number of fans at this big of a game is not ideal, Coach Arroyo has said that the small 3% capacity is better than zero fans.
As the game falls on Halloween night this year, and even Coach Arroyo has hinted towards possibly wearing a costume on the sidelines, the fight for the Fremont Cannon will be one that everyone is talking about and nobody wants to miss.