Updates all around

June 8th, 2012
By

Hey all, hope your springs are sailing smoothly into summers. Been a while since the last entry, so I figure shotgun spread-style updates are in order for UH basketball.

Recruiting is obviously first on the docket. Coach Gib Arnold still has a scholarship to assign for 2012-13, and isn't about to give it away lightly at this point. The primary target of the spring, Aaric Armstead of Bullard High in Fresno, Calif., remains at the top of the list, and UH at or near the top of his. But before the parties can get him signed, Armstead needs a combination of grades and SAT scores to come back in the positive this summer. Essentially, UH is in a holding pattern as far as the shooting guard is concerned.

Those of you holding out for a Gerry Blakes pickup this summer are in for some disappointment, barring a last-minute 180 by the NCAA. It seems he will have to continue along the JUCO route and get his associate's degree to become D-I eligible. So Blakes might still become a Rainbow Warrior at some point — it's just very unlikely it will be anytime soon.

On the bright side, the biggest academic question mark among signed players seems to be  moving toward eligibility. Fall signee Isaac Fotu is apparently well on his way to qualifying academically and is expected in during the late summer or fall. Stay tuned on that one.

Kamehameha's Dyrbe Enos is pretty much enrolled and set to join the team as a walk-on this fall. UH is said to have another player (likely a walk-on) coming from Australia. It isn't the son of UH hoops alum Brad Pineau, — though forward Dane Pineau, a senior this fall, is being recruited by UH for the future.

Two walk-ons from last season, Pii Minns and Tyler Brown, both went out for football in the spring. Consider them iffy to doubtful to return as hoops players.

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There's been plenty of fan paranoia about Vander Joaquim's future with the team, given the departures of some of his teammates — some expected and some not — and Joaquim's blossoming talent.

The UH coaches have exuded calm about the Joaquim situation and have given indications that they fully expect him back. Until you hear otherwise, pencil Joaquim in as the starting center next year. However, it's a long time until August, and his progress with Team Angola will bear watching this summer.

The 6-10 center was most recently with his national teammates in Madrid, Spain, in preparation for an Olympic qualifying tournament in Venezuela, July 2-8.

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It sounds like the 2012-13 schedule is close to being released. (I know, I know, we heard that a lot last summer, but UH seems to be on the ball this time.)

Arnold confirmed again on Friday that the marquee nonconference games are at UNLV and at home against Illinois, and whomever UH gets paired up with in the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Arizona, East Tennessee State, Indiana State, Miami, Ole Miss, San Diego State, San Francisco). Don't have any more specific opponents at this time, but Arnold said the Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic is completed and will make a return, including another ESPN Tip-Off Marathon game at about midnight local time.

The only game that is still being worked out, he said, is a neighbor island game on Molokai sometime in December that may or may not happen this upcoming season.

"I'd love to have Brandyn (assistant coach Akana) come back home," Arnold said. "And be the first Division I team to play on Molokai. I don't know if it's going to work out this year or next year, but we want to do it."

Arnold said the UNLV game would be the team's lone nonconference mainland game.

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The NCAA-sanctioned Manoa Summer League begins June 16 and runs through early August. So far, the current UH players confirmed as playing are Christian Standhardinger and Jace Tavita. So will former 'Bow Bill Amis.

That's all for now. Enjoy your summers all.

12 Responses to “Updates all around”

  1. Warrior Dave:

    Mahalo for the update Brian! Excellent news on Isaac Fotu. I too was holding my breath on that one. Can't wait for the Fall.


  2. Guy in the office:

    Thanks for the updates, Brian. News on Fotu looks promising. Add this to your updates: Shaq Stokes to play for Hofstra. Wish him well.


  3. hon2255:

    Aaric Armstead, one talented player, come Aaric ,get your score up , do whatever you can to get accepted here at UH. Write that letter to the admissions people also.


  4. poorboy:

    Brian,

    Do you think Gib has any other SG/SF HS late qualifier in mind if Aaric can't make it in to UH or other schools..I think if Gib and staff are always recruiting...he must have a back up guy or two, another couple of late qualifiers..I think, correct me if wrong, Bill Amis was a late addition to Nash's team too?

    And Vander, I believe he is coming back, unless he gets a 5 year guaranteed 15 million dollar contract from overseas or NBA free agent signee. I still think athletically and emotionally he has at least one more year to go, even with the summer international experience, I could be wrong..Gib once again, the perpetual recruiter already has sights on another foreign big with 3 to play 3 6"10" to 6'11" with raw but teachable, coachable head on right Big, as a late get just in case..Gib learned..!! Just my opinion Brian!!


  5. Brian McInnis:

    Hey Clyde,

    No problem sir. Right you are, my mistake not including Shaq's destination. Will be interesting to see if he gets a waiver to play right away due to his grandmother's illness. In any case, best of luck to him closer to home in N.Y.


  6. Brian McInnis:

    Hey Poorboy,

    Like you, I'd be surprised if they don't have some contingencies in mind for such a scenario. And yes, Bill was picked up late in the summer of '07 by Coach Nash. There are always solid late pickups out there if you know where to look.


  7. Guy in the office:

    Hey Brian. When you've got the time, you might want to follow up on Wahine point guard Alissa Campanero. i'm sure you know by now that rumors are afloat that she's not returning. I liked her game, but thought she logged too many minutes. She's so high-energy, it must have worn on her. Does that leave Nomura and the LMU transfer as the PGs?


  8. Brian McInnis:

    Hey Clyde,

    Yeah the Campanero rumors had been out there for a little while ... was just able to confirm that she's not returning from Coach Beeman and will have something in tomorrow's paper. It was definitely too big a workload for a true freshman, but she had her moments. You are correct, at least for now it's up to DeAngelis the LMU transfer and Nomura to share the load at PG.


  9. Guy in the office:

    Thanks for following up, Brian. Too bad about Campanero. Janelle and the LMU transfer will do fine, but they'll need to start grooming a PG.


  10. K-Bay:

    Looking' Forward to More Good News from Coach Laura on more point / combo guard depth; and moreso,

    A Couple of (Surprise) Bigs...

    Looking forward to getting back to enjoyable (Na Wahine & Men's) BB doubleheaders; esp. hard-playing, competitive, even Winning Basketball...


  11. poorboy:

    Thanks for reply Brian...you know Gib, one way or another, he said constant recruiter, and that is what he and staff are doing..heck Wallace's tenure , back to O'Neill days..late gets..some really proved good players..i.e. Bill Amis one of the best examples..

    Thanks a million for reply Brian..would not be surpised to see a wing or post, or pg..we gotta wait and see?!


  12. ALLAN:

    TREVOR WISEMAN WAS MY FAVORITE PLAYER.