Hoops Talk

A Look at team, as is

April 16th, 2012

One of the nice benefits of being a Booster Club member ( among others, you should all join), is to go to Board meetings and hear from the coaches. Yesterday, at a board meeting, Coach Fisher spoke about the returning players and the early signees.

Not surprisingly, he was very optimistic about the team's outlook for next season, even with the three recent departures. He told the group that the point will likely be manned by Stokes and Tavita, the Utah transfer. Tavita played in 60 games for the Utes and was selected to be the team captain before he decided to leave. His three year stats, however, are frankly not that impressive, averaging less than 2 points per game and about 2 assists per game in limited minutes. But according to Fisher, he has shown good leadership skills and a decent outside shot during practices. As you know, i am not a big fan of Stokes as a point guard, but it looks like that is going to be the tandom at the point. There is also the Israeli guard, Orel Lev, who arrived in January. He averaged 25 points and 40% from three for his high school, but my guess is that the coaching and competition in Israel is not comparable to most US high schools.

Inside, the team looks much stronger. Fisher told us that Vander will be back . But he will be trying to play in the Olympics for Angola ( if they qualify ), and i dont think its 100 percent certain that he will return. But ready to hit the floor for the Rainbow Warriors is 6-8 Nebraska transfer, Christain Standhardinger who averaged 8.5 points and 4.2 rebounds for the Cornhuskers and who i hear is the real deal. The team also signed 6-10 Caleb Dressler in November and he is rated either a three star or two star, depending on which rating service you want to follow. And then there is the New Zealand signee Issac Fotu, who still has to qualify, but could be a real steal for the Rainbows ( One Mainland coach told me he is very good and getting better).

We were told there are two scholarships available and that 4 players will be here this weekend. I do not believe any are point guards. They are a mixture of high school seniors, jc, and a transfer.Names are never mentioned, nor are schools- you know NCAA issues).

I still think the team needs a true point guard and a reliable outside three point shooter. Brrereton was inconsistent from outside as was Stokes. But it looks to me that the team's strength will be in the frontcourt. There is even some depth there. Lets see who signs in the next two weeks.

By the way, i know there has been alot of talk about all of the players leaving. Only one left out of 9 from year one. . Sometimes, players do not work out, both on and off the court. Sometimes, a player thinks he is better than the coaches think he is. And sometimes, coaches need to make room for someone who they think is better than what they have. That is the world of college basketball. Hopefully, we will see some better stability in the program after recruiting year three. But scholarships are on a year to year basis, and both the players and the coaches are free to make changes as they see fit. One concern i do have is will all these comings and goings impact the APR and possibly cost us a schorlarship or two down the road. We will have to wait and see

Jeff Portnoy is a member of the UH Board of Regents. The views expressed here are his and do not reflect those of the board.

Posted in 1 | 17 Comments »

17 Responses to “A Look at team, as is”

  1. Hon2255:

    Orel lev by your comments concerns us especially if the level of play is below us standards. With all of the players in the states why use a scolie on a foreign student that plays with far less competitive players. As Jeff. Said Warriors news a point guard that can do it all. Surely we can get a jc guy that can step in right away this fall.

  2. oldtimer808:

    It is all fine and dandy knowing the needs of the team but getting the right student/athlete to come to Hawaii is another thing. Coach Wallace always had that problem and it is no different with any other coach. I think the system that Coach Gibbs is trying to run can be successful with the right mix of players irregardless of a pass first point guard. I think Stokes will get better in time he is still young. We need to get over Miah and move on and support the coach in this difficult time. I also think Coach Gibbs is learning to recognize the kind of players that will eventually fit in.

  3. Hank:

    Judging from the schools that wanted him, Fotu must be the real deal and a player that should contribute right away. I'm excited to watch him play. Many may disagree with me on this, but I think Shaq can be a more productive 2-guard than anyone we've had (he looks to be the 2 at this point). We need another point guard though, that's for sure.

  4. krump1_AKA_protector:

    I agree with 'Hank' that Shaq is a natural 2. Tavita will surprise at the point. At Utah, I think he made a total of 3 3-pointers. He's worked on his outside shooting and in the Summer League, I saw him hit at least 6 3-pointers in a game on a couple of occasions and looked good doing it. He pushed the ball up-court pretty well too.

  5. Hon2255:

    Gob needs a top jc guard this year that can handle the ball and score as well. Let's hope Armstead signs

  6. al:

    armstead is in high school.

  7. Lowtone123:

    Gib's work this season will go a long way to making or breaking his legacy as head coach at Manoa.

  8. hoosier:

    From what I undertand, two high schoolers (PG & SG/SF) visiting along with one transfer and a juco SG. Interesting to see if any of these players end up coming or if there are others out there who Gib is looking at. Jeff - Any mention of Jawato? Gib talked him up a lot this past year, especially about his improved 3 point shooting. Is he a possible answer for the outside game next year?

  9. Hon2255:

    Armstead is a senior and would come in as a freshman

  10. Hon2255:

    If he can get all four then poss Jefferson or jaws to would be a walkon status and perhaps obtain financial aid of some sort

  11. jeff:

    on Jawato, i have no first hand information and nothing from the coaches. From someone who watched a number of practices, i am told he is somewhat slow and his outside shot is inconsistent, but October is still a long way off.

  12. mctruck:

    I'm scratching my head????, why fb-prospects can be listed as, "visiting" UH, but bb-prospects are not??? wada-scoop?

  13. eagle:

    At least this site is starting to show some interest:

    This site (below) is pretty "clear" on who the prospective visits are; and some independent checking validates a reasonably good level of accuracy -- provides visit dates, videos, relevant articles, etc....


    Including the point guard (who lacks size, but not heart), most of these prospective recruits appear to have athleticism and "scoring" ability (contrasted to shooting ability which they also might have)

    Rather than guessing on Jawato, ASK the Coaches ... as someone mentioned above he has gotten good reviews from the coaches and the players have started talking him up -- that they have great confidence in his shooting ... Orel Lev was Israeli Team Captain and his semester and summer (against his teammates) should help his adjustment to D-1 (and Hawai'i; All High Schoolers got to);

    LEV hits 40% from three, so both Jawato and Lev are "prospective" outside shooting help ...STILL gotta prove it against competition (including Conference); EX: as good a shooter as Bo Barnes was, he had not yet developed enough skills (to get free or break open, like Savo learned over three years) to be effective even when opponents work to shut you down...

    Since Coach Gib (and ALL the coaches) travel to "SEE" the players before they sign them (as opposed to some of the scouting report signings of the past) i expect that the coaches' evaluations of whether a recruit can play D-1 are better than average [i would tend to discount Year One when there was a sweep up scramble in the too-short recruiting time frame -- BTW TWO of Nine are Left: Vander and Rozitis are pretty good...)...

  14. al:

    mctruck...football, basketball, whatever. neither may officially disclose to the public who is visiting or offered scholarships. officially meaning any staffer are not allowed to disclose or discuss who is visiting.

    the news "leaks" to the beat writers, tsai for example, who would then call the prospect and get the info from them.

    there are no double standards the rules regarding recruitment are the same. some reporters work harder at obtaining info than others, it is why you get info or you don't.

    same with commitments, verbal commitments are from the prospect and not the coaches.

  15. jeff:

    let's see shaq, hans,vander some tranfers redshirts,recruits unknown if they can get into school not a pretty picture we were really hurt in year two recruits who could not make the the grade but hey maybe someday they might get in i call this voodoo recruiting i see a under 500 team next year

  16. hoosier:

    Whew! Why don't you tell us what you really think, Jeff. Just kidding. So true about year two recruiting class. Like a lost year. I do not know what to expect this upcoming year. Hopefully we can at least establish some true home court advantage and avoid the painful home court blowouts we have seen the last couple of years. It is beginning to look like next year or the year after before we see some solid progress. And if that is the case, then Gib could be faciing a bit of pressure as his contract nears renewal. I hope for the best but time will tell. (Is voodoo recruiting kind of like voodoo economics??)

  17. jeff 1:

    by the way, there to be two jeffs. The number 15 entry was not me ( the blog host). so from now on i will be Jeff 1

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