Arnold’s comments on recent signings
The two recent signings for the Hawai’i basketball team are proof that persistence pays off in recruiting.
Garrett Nevels signed an official National Letter of Intent on Friday to play for the Hawaii basketball team, just two days after Negus Webster-Chan signed his paperwork to complete a transfer from Missouri to Hawai’i.
Both players said an early-established relationship with the Hawai’i coaches were a reason for them selecting to play for the Warriors.
Hawai’i head coach Gib Arnold said he saw Nevels early in the 2012-13 season, and knew immediately that the 6-foot-2 shooting guard could help the Warriors.
“Once I saw him, he was exactly what we were looking for,” Arnold said. “I thought he really fit what we needed. We needed to get more athletic, we needed to get deeper on the guard line, quicker, more athletic, and he fits that.”
Nevels averaged 19.8 points and 5.6 rebounds per game as a sophomore at Mount San Antonio College (Calif.), and also led the team in 3-pointers with 49. He shot 57.8 percent from the field, 81.4 percent from the free-throw line, and 47.6 percent from 3-point range. Perhaps most important, he led Mount SAC to the California Community College Athletic Association championship. He scored 32 points in the championship game, and was named the MVP of the tournament.
“I thought he was the best junior college player in the state of California,” Arnold said. “He had a monster year.”
Arnold’s recruiting relationship with Webster-Chan goes back several years, when the 6-7 combo guard was still at Huntington Prep in West Virginia. Webster-Chan was also being recruited by many of the top programs in the country, and he eventually signed with Missouri.
Despite appearing in 32 games, including six starts, as a true freshman at Missouri, Webster-Chan opted to transfer, and Hawaii suddenly became his first choice.
“Saw the light and decided he wanted to end up at the University of Hawaii,” Arnold said with a smile. “He’s going to transfer and he’s got to sit out a year, but when we get him eligible, he’s going to be a real special player.”
Arnold went so far as describing Webster-Chan as a player who “got a chance to be one of the best players ever to play here.”
Another recruit, point guard Quincy Smith from City College of San Francisco, is confirmed to be on an official visit to Hawaii this weekend, although Arnold can not comment on recruits until they sign the official paperwork.