Archive for March, 2015

Its Tournament Time

By
March 10th, 2015



Well, its time for the real season to begin. 20 wins is nice, but the Rainbow Warriors are not likely going to any postseason without a Conference Championship. Now, the Wahine, that's a different story.

Ok, first the men. I have been picking Santa Barbara to win the Tournament and I am not changing now. They are playing great, although Irvine or Davis could win it all. But I like the Rainbows bracket. it couldn't have shaped up any better. UH open up with Long Beach, a team they beat easily just a few weeks ago. Its a Long Beach team that is really struggling. They cant score, and their best player is an awful shooting slump. But they have the pedigree and could get it together for a run. I pick UH.

If there are no upsets in the first round, and I don't think there will be ( yes, I remember Cal Poly's miracle run last year), Uh will face Davis in the semi-finals/ The Bows are one of the two league teams to beat UC Davis during the regular season, and they match up well the Aggies. It would be an upset, but I believe  UH has the defensive ability to overcome some offensive liabilities, and if they can shoot 50% or so, they can win this game

However, I believe the run will stop there. I don't think UH can beat either Santa Barbara or Irvine. Yes I know its hard to beat a team three times, but frankly, I think both of those teams can control the basketball and have the better of UH on the offensive end. If UH is unable to turn teams over, the transition game suffers and UH has had some trouble in the half court.

UH's RPI and strength of schedule makes it unlikely that the team will play in one of the lesser tournaments, particularly any tournament where you have to pay to play. But I guess its possible it could agree to go on the road if someone else pays for it. Its been a few years since the men have won a first round game, so any win would be nice. Whatever happens, it been a good year for the Men. Exciting play, good crowds, and a bright future if everyone comes back.

Now what can I say about the Women. What a year. Coach Beeman and her team have captured the attention of Hawaii fans, witness the almost 3500 who attended Saturday's Senior night. Coming in first in the Conference means the Wahine need to win only two games, and frankly, a loss in either would be considered a disappointment. I think the Women will be going dancing, and I mean in the Big Dance. However, if they lose, as regular season Conference Champs, they will play in the WNIT, hopefully at home, and I think they a chance of getting an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Congratulations to all the UH players, both men and women, who made one of the league's all-conference teams. You can quibble as to whether the teams deserved better, but the honors were well deserved.

Don't miss tomorrow's Hoopstalk. We hope to have both Benjy and Laura,  as well as a surprise former player all the way from Spain. All I can tell you is he is one of mine, and I believe your, most favorite former Bows

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Down To The Wire

By
March 3rd, 2015



Its hard to believe the regular season comes to an end this week. Where it did the season go? Tomorrow is the last home game against Santa Barbara and its senior night. We say goodbye to Garrett Nevels and Brandon Jawato. Brandon is only a Junior, but injuries have cut short his basketball career. Nevels has had an up and season offensively, but he has played hard on both ends of the court and his Senior leadership has been critical to this young team. Hope he finds his offense in the Tournament because without it, the Bows will struggle against the top teams.

As I predicted last week, I think UH will end the regular Conference with a 8-8 record. Santa Barbara is playing really good basketball with Williams back, and they will be hard to beat tomorrow. Not impossible, but it will take a full 40 minute effort by Hawaii.  Saturday at Fullerton should be a relatively easy win against the weakest team in the league with nothing to play for. If things go as predicted, Hawaii should finish 5th and play Long Beach, a team they have beaten at home and can beat again. There is a chance UH could play Riverside and again, that should be a first round win. After that it would get much more difficult against either Davis ( a good draw), Irvine or Santa Barbara ( a bad draw).

Looks like UC Davis will finish the regular season in first place. Quite an accomplishment. They were picked to finish 7th in the preseason media poll. Irvine and Santa Barbara will fight it out for second. I still think the gauchos will win the Tournament. Whoever represents the Conference in the Tournament will be a 15 or even a 16 seed. The biggest disappointment is CSUN. They were picked 4th and will finish in 8th most likely. They Are playing better now and could pull off an upset ( witness last year's run by Cal Poly).

As far as UH, its been a solid year. Probably a 20 win season, but two of those wins come against local Div 2 schools, and many of the other wins against less than 500 record opponents. The Pitt win was the signature win, and the home wins against Davis and Long Beach were nice. The best loss was against Santa Barbara on the road and the 1 point loss to Wichita State. But considering the turmoil in the program back in November, all in all its been a good season.

Looks like a nationwide search will begin shortly for a permanent Coach.  People don't realize what an attractive job this is, and I expect many good candidates to apply ( including Benji). I suspect any final decision will have to wait until we have a new AD, but that doesn't mean the weeding out process cant begin soon. I think its appropriate for the new AD to make this important hire, but it needs to be done by the middle of April in my opinion. Yes recruiting may be hampered by a delay, but this job is too important to rush simply for that reason.

Contrary opinions, as usual, are welcome. And thanks to the loyal folks who read this blog and more thanks to those who take the time to respond. I appreciate the imput.

 

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