Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

World Wide Warriors: Whittier, California

Aaron Valdes is not quite an official member of the Hawai’i basketball team, although it should be just a matter of time.

Valdes, a 6-foot-5 freshman guard/forward, is still awaiting NCAA clearance to join the Warriors. Although he has not participated in team and individual workouts, he has been hanging out with the members of the team and playing in open gym sessions.

Valdes is from Whittier, California, where he was a standout in both basketball and water polo while growing up. “Quiet – it’s peaceful, not much to do, though, except play sports,” he said of his hometown.

Like the other Warriors from the Southern California area, Valdes said he misses the food. He noted that In-N-Out Burger and certain types of Mexican restaurants can not be found in Honolulu.

In any case, Valdes is hoping to be cleared in time to participate in the ‘Ohana Hoopfest on October 12. He has a 38-inch vertical jump, and has wowed teammates during open gym sessions with some of his dunks.


  1. Aaron, Hang in there! Thanks for choosing to make your basketball & educational career in Hawai’i…and also having/finding the means to quick-start the whole venture (faster than the NCAA, but expectantly they’ll come through in support of you and U.H. soon).

    Many of us think you are one of the key X-Factors in helping the team challenge st the Top of the Big West Conference…your size, quickness and physicality gives us a chance to neutralize some of the better guards/wings in the conference…

    Hope you find/develop a taste for some of the good to great foods here, soon…
    Have a Great, Fun, Long & Happy Career here!

  2. The sky is the limit for Aaron! Literally and potentially!

    As others have mentioned, I hope Aaron gets cleared soon by the NCAA. Hopefully by this Friday, so he can display his dunks in Hoopsfest!

    I recall UH going to In-N-Out burger for Cali road game meals in the past. Now that we’re in the Big West, road trips will be a great treat for our Cali guys.

  3. Welcome Aaron, another great student athlete HIGH CHARACTER! Thank you for being patient, you will be a part of MBB OHANA. …hope it will be on time for Hoopfest!

    Thanks for video, Dayton…good to see Aaron and hear his words…!

  4. Thank you again Dayton and staff and sponsors!! Great site! Hope to read a lot of pos/comments from Aussie Mum and The Tonganator, Memphis, Utah, etc…First day of official practice MBB Oct 12 2012 Friday following Women’s Volleyball game!

    Should be exciting, ..pretty sure Dayton will have some video from the Hoopfest slam dunk contest, and team introductions!

    Dayton, I guess you have save Kamehameha Kapalama School’s MBB representative for last interview! Dybe Enos!Dyrbe, is a young man on a mission..it still impresses me , how he hired a PERSONAL TRAINER to get prepared to be part of D1 UH MBB team..Awesome props to Dyrbe and family!!

  5. Talk defense and two guys surface: Valdez and Jefferson. Think about the damage they can do when both are on the floor. I can see the two of them working together to create traps and causing turnovers. I’m certain that Gib will develop trapping strategies now that he’s got two stick-em defenders in the back court. Hopefully their offensive game is consistent and can compliment their outstanding defensive game. If so watch for these two paired together and bringing a completely different look to past UH MBB teams. Defense baby—you gotta have it to win championships!

  6. servante,

    I agree and echo your comments. That is how the Big Boys do it, DEFENSE. Even with the AC , Alika , Micah Kroeger teams..they played a type of match up zone..the three of them read the passing lanes well and got a lot of steals, and runouts for layins, spot up 3’s and flushes.

    Now Gib has luxury of Aaron Valdes, who is a D player. Garrett is a D guy. Christian is a hustle guy, so is Hauns, ..then you have BBIQ smart guys, play passing lanes, Ozren, …a tough physical specimen, in fact two enforcer type, FB bodies, Jace and Spearman…guarding the rim, Isaac, Vander(when healthy), Caleb and Davis..Gib can play some D to create quick strike offense, more runouts, breaks..that , is exciting basketball…

    And servante, you are correct, Gib and Benjy are instilling D like Gib’s first year as priority..UH MBB team buys into 40 min of intense D, holding other teams FG percentages under 39 percent range..UH can win a lot of games!! get 7 or 8 criticial D stops last 10 . 12 minutes of game..and team, whomever is in, whether Big or smalls, hit their free throws and take care of ball, inbound under pressure,,work on plays to break press..Yeah, UH will win a good amount of games..

    Bottom line, you are correct, this team can shoot, however high level D, with guys like Garrett and Aaron, and Manroop, Jace, MIchael Harper, Christian and the Bigs and wings buying in..wins championships!! i.e. BWC tourney Championship!!

  7. Kia ora to all MBB Ohana and fans. Just checking in and catching up with latest news. Excitement starting to build up towards the official starting of training and the hoopfest this Friday.

    Guys, if you can get hold of some of Tim Tams that Micheal was promoting (and Aussie mum has instructed Micheal to share the shipment) try this, which my kids taught me and am sure Micheal had done it:
    You take the Tim Tams, make a small bite (hole) in two conners diagnally to each other. Get a cup of hot chocolate, dip one of the open corner into the hot choc and suck through the other open corner, then quickly let the Tim Tams melt in your mouth!!!

    Hey, the coaching staff can run a play code name, “Tim Tams” just a thought.. 🙂

    Looking forward to watch the Air Show with AirAaeron on display when season start. Bring it on!!!!


  8. The Tonganator,

    That is a great description of how some people eat their Tim Tams!! To all that haven’t had the pleasure – I know it sounds disgusting – but it is a really great way to eat a Tim Tam!

    I still want some of the Chicago pizza though!!! (can’t stop thinking about that one)

    Go Warriors

    PS – I wish I was going to be there for the Hoopfest – sounds like alot of fun – make sure that you all cheer the boys on for me.

  9. Aussie Mum and Tonganator,

    Enjoy your comments and support of your family with UH MBB team! From New Zealand and Australia!! Wish you were here for Hoopfest too!

    Hey, Dayton, you have to let Gib know how far reaching fan and family support is for UH MBB team..

    As Tonganator said: Bring it On!!

    UH MBB start festivities Friday Oct 12 2012 !!!

    It is going to be a FUN YEAR…wish the boys much success…and Aloha to Australia and New Zealand!!

  10. one player left to introduce. Mr. Enos!

  11. Aloha AV,

    advance congrats for to be a full fledge MBB Warriors by Friday – coming from Dayton got to be good!
    may sleep better finally.

    looking forward to see that way-up-there Flush in person (+ the fans’ reaction).

    fun time all the way; autograph please?

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