Buzz Back In UH Hoops

The excitement is back at Stan Sheriff Center for University of Hawaii Rainbow Warrior basketball! UH won the 47th Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic by beating three teams with distinctly disparate styles. The only constant was the passion and intensity of the Hawaii team.

“I thought we’d play really hard and we’d play together,” says first-year head coach Gib Arnold. “And I think we did that. We’ve got a long way to go to get where we need to be. If we work hard, we can continue to grow.”

Arnold makes it very clear that this is just the first step in a long process.

“I’m not looking to just assemble a team, I’m building a program,” he says. “We are laying the foundation.”

With senior leaders Hiram Thompson and Bill Amis teaming up with a couple of holdovers and eight newcomers, including four freshmen, the team has a ton of energy and enough of a rudder to keep it together. So far they’ve seen quick and athletic (Cal State Fullerton, which played a lot of zone), a three-ball attack (Montana State) and pressure man-to-man applied by strong athletes (Central Michigan). The Rainbow Warriors managed to fight them off for wins in each case. The improvement and effort have not been lost on Hawaii fans.

“These guys never give up and they shoot with confidence,” said one caller to my morning radio show. “We haven’t seen that in a long time around here.”

UH has been picked to finish dead last in the WAC by both coaches and media, but will better that by a good margin if they continue to build on what they’ve shown so far.

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