By Brian McInnis
That's what I'm calling it until the media embargo on Keith Shamburger is lifted — the Shambargo.
Things in Hawaii basketball land took a bizarre twist last week with talk of some team issues following the 92-83 home loss to Long Beach State, and the first-half benching of Shamburger, then the reigning Big West Player of the Week, against Cal State Northridge on Saturday.
After Monday's practice, UH coach Gib Arnold said Shamburger was not talking to the media until an unspecified time, at the player's request.
He seems to be back in the team's fold now, judging by body language at practices since and his Twitter activity. I'm pretty sure he'll open up eventually, but now is apparently not the time.
I'll keep requesting him.
UH was pretty shorthanded in Tuesday's team practice, as Christian Standhardinger missed it entirely with an illness, while Aaron Valdes and Negus Webster-Chan watched from the sidelines for similar reasons. Newcomer Stefan Jankovic was also out. And Niko Filipovich (knee) is done for the year, making for a pretty thin scout team in preparation for UC Santa Barbara on Thursday.
If you missed today's story about redshirt freshman center Caleb Dressler deciding to opt out of UH in favor of a Division II school or a junior college, here it is (subscriber content, sorry).
It's no big surprise. Dressler was going to be hard-pressed for playing time next season even if he came back totally healthy (and that was far from a given) coming off his back surgery for a bulging disc.
It's just a shame he wasn't able to get even the most basic garbage time in a blowout game before his UH career came to an end. Best wishes for Dressler wherever he lands — likely somewhere in the Pacific Northwest closer to his native Vancouver, Wash.
If anyone's curious about the whereabouts of UH assistant coach Brandyn Akana — he was not on the UH bench for the last four games, two home and two away — he's been doing some international recruiting, this according to Arnold. He's supposed to be back for games within the next two weeks, although he was seen around campus on Monday.