Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Trio of recruits from Senegal have Hawai’i on list

The Hawai’i basketball program really does have a global recruiting scope.

The Blue Squad AAU program is more proof of that. Blue Squad is comprised of players from Africa – primarily Senegal – and three of its top players said the University of Hawai’i is on the list of American colleges they are looking at for the future.

The three players are: Sidy N’Dir, a 6-foot-3 point guard; Abou Diallo, a 6-8 forward; Abdoulaye Ndoye, a 6-10 center. All three are from Senegal, and their size and athleticism caught the eyes of several college programs at last month’s Las Vegas Classic AAU tournament.

All three are considered high school seniors in Senegal, but it is still early in the recruiting process, as they could possibly attend an American high school or prep school to improve their English – and basketball skills.


However, their tie to Hawai’i is the Blue Squad’s head coach, Babacar Sy. He is also from Senegal, and was once an assistant coach at the College of Southern Idaho when Gib Arnold was the head coach there a decade ago.

“Gib Arnold was my head coach, I was his assistant, at the College of Southern Idaho,” Sy said. “Ever since, we became really good friends.”

Sy said Arnold has known about the trio for a while, but they are not exactly a secret anymore. “We have over 50 schools looking at these kids now,” Sy said.

The player drawing the most attention is Ndoye, who has a long wingspan and uses it to block shots. He also has shooting range out to the 3-point line and can run the floor

Diallo is also a “long” player who likes to slash to the basket. N’Dir is a left-handed point guard who can score in a variety of ways.

“I learned a whole lot being his assistant at Southern Idaho, so we kept contact here and there,” Sy said of his friendship with Arnold. “Hopefully one of these days we’ll have one of the African kids coming to Hawaii and play Hawai’i basketball.”

Hawai’i previously had one player from Senegal – Ahmet Gueye (2005-07).

— — — — — — — —

After a one-year break from basketball, former UH standout Bill Amis is returning to the international hardwood this season.


Amis, a 6-foot-9 forward, has reached an agreement to play for Eisbaeren Bremerhaven, a team in Germany’s top professional league.

Amis played for a professional team in Estonia during the 2011-12 season, and was named to the all-league team. He opted not to play during the 2012-13 season, and instead worked at Hawaii Mortgage Central. He also served as an analyst at UH basketball games for Oceanic Sports TV.

“This was a good year off for me,” he said. “I got some experience in the business world, but it also made me realize what my real passion is, and I want to take advantage of my youth and go back overseas to play professional basketball.”

Amis recently completed a standout session in the Hawai’i College Basketball Summer League, averaging 21.8 points and 9.9 rebounds per game for regular-season champ Central Medical Clinic.

— — — — — — — —

Hawai’i will host New Mexico State this season in a late-night game as part of ESPN’s College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon.

The game is scheduled to begin at midnight (Hawai’i time) on November 12. It will be televised live on ESPN2, and is also part of the Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Rainbow Classic.

ESPN’s Tip-Off Marathon features 24 consecutive hours of televised basketball games on the ESPN network of stations, and the late-night time slot has become an annual tradition for Hawai’i. This will be the sixth consecutive year that the Warriors will be featured in the Tip-Off Marathon.

Hawai’i and New Mexico State played against each other at the Stan Sheriff Center every year from 2006 through 2012, when both were members of the Western Athletic Conference. The Aggies are still in the WAC, and they finished 24-11 last season and went to the NCAA Tournament after winning the WAC Tournament.

The other teams in the Rainbow Classic will be Western Michigan and Tennessee State. The earlier games of the tournament will be played on November 8 and 9.

The complete 2013-14 schedule for UH has yet to be announced


  1. All Three — N’Dir, Diallo and Ndoye — display good quickness and athleticism, like they could have been soccer or track stars, but found and focused now on basketball; they also all display good basics, so Babacar Sy is probably a good fundamentals coach, and could be a long and steady pipeline of Senegalese/African basketball talent …and All probably still have time to get taller, as well as bigger and stronger….

    Great Trust and Respect between the Coaches!

    Mahalo, Dayton, Gib & Staff(s)!

  2. Dayton: Mahalo for recruiting updates! Gib and staff , true to word, constantly recruiting, looking for right fit, and good students, people and athletes. Quite exciting times ahead!

    Go Rainbow Warriors.!!

  3. they will for sure need coaching and some time learning American ball…ndoye could be a gem for us…n’dir seems to have a similar game like blakes but with a smoother stroke

  4. Gib’s got his work cut out to land any of these players with this many schools after them. Hopefully Gib’s relationship with Babacar Sy will be the key to getting at least one of them.

    You can never have too many athletic F/C on a basketball roster.

  5. Ndoye looks like a much more athletic version of Vander. Hopefully with less attitude and ego.

  6. Tunnelrat808: (sorry in response to T808’s comment from previous video post)

    You are correct, I believe it was this site, that mentioned, maybe even Gib, that Michael Thomas had a good run HS senior year. West Coast schools made a push to sign him, however Gib established great relationship with Dad and family. Michael is also a very good student, found a major that UH offered as well I believe(any out there that can correct me, please do).

    Michael has the physical tools. Gib will give Stefan, Michael, Nikola, a good chance to see what they can do, individual workouts, going on now, through end of August, and into fall practices.

    I think a lot of UH MBB, fans, have not witnessed yet what Michael can develop into. Great young man. That is the type of player that Gib is recruiting now, not the high drama guys.

    Hopefully, Michael, by Soph, Jr year can be playing with one of the Senegal guys mentioned above. Imagine, the type of players for the forseeable future, possibly, Evan Fitzner, prime target of major Pac12 schools, Negus Webster Chan eligible next 3 years, the Senegal 3, and who knows who else is on the recruiting docket.?

    T808, fun to be a UH MBB fan now, things look bright! Hope for a great season for current UH guys, without a doubt, Standhardinger, Spearman, Rozitis, Shamburger, along with the whole team are on a mission to get to the DANCE , March 2014!

  7. Imagine, Isaac Fotu playing with one of the Senegal 3? Wow, awesome, would be!!

  8. Both N’dir and Ndoye played for Team Africa that placed 3rd in the recently completed Adidas Nations global tournament held in Southern California. N’dir was voted the top international player and was selected to the tournament’s Second Team. The championship game between two USA teams had 19 of the Top 100 High School players in the US.

    They look like excellent prospects for next year (or in 2015, if they go to a prep school). Way to go Coach Gib!

  9. A song sings that “You got to have a dream to make a dream comes true!”;
    When you dream, you might as well dream big!

    About three years from now, we should be attracting Top 100 HS players!
    No high impact Freshmen present on the TEAM >> Insufficient progress made.

    Hope for Lady Lucky be with Hawaii?

  10. mraloha777: Great information on the Senegal 3!

    A great, one of my all time favorite, recent vintage Senegal MBB player? Ahmet Gueye! 6’7″ 238 lbs or so, his Jr. year, great player. He unfortunately had knee injury, Sr. year was not the same player. I think Ahmet, might have had a pro career overseas.

    Ahmet, great attitude, good skill, we always said, if ONLY Ahmet were 6’10” tall, and had not blown out his knee, he might have made it to NBA. He was a very good player, from Senegal!

    I think they speak French. Ahmet, spoke French, English, very intelligent guy, wish him the best wherever he is !

    Ndoye, did coach say he had a 7’6″ to 7’7″ wingspan? Wow, NBA scouts, measure, span, to see how bigs can block shots, you could be 6’8″ with 7’2″ wingspan, and be able to block and intimidate a lot of shots, I think Bill Russell, was in that mode , great timing, however his reach, wing span was like a 7 footer, one of the best Big Defensive players, and winners of all time, NCAA and NBA, same goes for Wilt, Kareem, Shaq, Bill Walton etc.

  11. the only way we gonna start pulling in these talents is by winning this season…BW title at the least

  12. hawaiifan09:

    That is bottom line. For all , an in particular the primary sports programs, Football, WVB, MVB, MBB , WBB and Baseball, Softball. If teams win, lot of support and draws good, elite athletes.

    What is that old saying: JUST WIN BABY!

    Winning pulls a whole state together, i.e. 2008 UH Football Sugar bowl team.

    Without question Gib and team, have to win and go NIT or better yet NCAA, then, Hawaii, and we fans will be happy!

    Go Rainbow Warriors, JUST WIN guys, you can do it! Winning 20 games a season, will move program to top 30 , 35 consistently. Go UH MBB team, work hard and go get that BWC tourney title!

    Hopefully, that will attract the elite world talent to UH. I like this year’s team, no ONE player dominant, it will be from 1 through 15 active roster guys( if that is what Gib decides)to get it done. Win as a Team. and dream big. Go get that invite to the Dance!

    Go Rainbow Warriors!

  13. Interesting and consistent. Just opinion on another media comment on summer league and UH guys.
    Follows, what we all observed on video and in person.

    Some guys make impact, some, have work to do.

    Still awaiting, Christian, Davis, and Jack.

    Should be interesting, and fans on this forum, very observant, about UH MBB team new and older guys.

    I still think Gib and staff very happy to have the guards they have, and the returning all BWC type forwards returning. Those two,Christian and Isaac, along with the improved guard play, will have major impact on team’s success this year.

    Should be interesting, hope for the best! And to any potential recruit viewing and reading comments on this site, if you come to UH to play, you will have opportunity to elevate MBB to greater heights, great, opportunity, for the right fit athletes and students, people!! No question!!

  14. These three are raw but display a nice skill set. The point guard looks legit and could be very good with some refining. I really like the big men, the forward I like how he attacks the paint. The center I would definitely go after, with some added muscle to go with his athleticism, he could be a defensive force like Dikembe Mutumbo.

  15. mens basketball is slowly getting more popular…still got a bunch of friends who don’t watch or can’t even name one player on the team in the past 5 years or so…they do watch and play ball but UH just isn’t good enough or exciting to them I guess….we got tv time early in the season so we have to make use of it and win….this has to be the biggest season of all..make or break for gib and top future recruits

  16. hawaiifan09:

    True. Gib and UH MBB program has to go on a 3 or 4 year run of 20 win or more seasons, with NIT and NCAA post season bids. Knock off some big name schools on the road, or DHC. Flirt with top 25 or 30 rankings. Like any sport, if you WIN , and win championships, with consistent post season, invites, fans will support. Look at N. Chow and the FB team. Very tough go, however, they have to win and go to at least Hawaii bowl over several years to generate interest.

    I like the returning UH guys and RS’s. Standhardinger(All BWC), Fotu(All BWC freshman), Rozitis, being with Gib for 4th year, Spearman, very rugged warrior, played CIT game with high ankle injury, and Keith Shamburger(all WAC performer at PG), plus Valdes, Enos, and Dressler(not most athletic, however, big body and smart young guy). The aforementioned, athletes, know, their goal is make it to NCAA’s. In particular the seniors will lead the charge.

    Hope UH has big year this year,and possible NCAA dance. Then , recruits, elite, and athletic , academically and psychologically sound will come to Hawaii. For the Senegal 3 to even consider Hawaii, is great! Same with Evan Fitzner, big target for PAC 12 schools.

  17. Added to my above post. Including Michael Harper, lot of heart and hustle. Almost helped UH comeback against AFA in CIT game. Mike is a team player. Great young, guy, who will bring, a soph leadership to help new and young guys. MH could be a player called off the bench to hit winning FT or 3 pointer.

    Got to love Mike!

    Senegal guys, come on over, and help UH MBB team to reach their goals over next 3 or 4 years. BWC elite and NCAA , NIT invites. SSC is a great place to play!

  18. Check out, on video,the middle bleachers, looks like Gib, Benjy and Fish!, checking out the action on court. Good job on video WI.!

  19. the biggest opportunity for our program will be to pull in top transfers like negus then we’ll be alright

  20. hawaiifan09:

    Hawaii NCAA D1 basketball to be top 25 , 30 program, tough. However, hawaiifan09, good point. Pretty sure that is the landscape of D1 MBB in the 21st century. Look at UH in past couple of years, including Nash’s last year, Zane Johnson, transfer from Arizona, Davis Rozitis transfer from USC, Brandon Spearman, JC, previously as freshman, transfer from Dayton, Christian Standhardinger, transfer from Nebraska. Keith Shamburger, transfer from San Jose St. You could go back further, Marv Vitatoe, transfer from UCLA, Gavin Smith transfer from UCLA, etc.

    Negus Webster Chan, so unique, a transfer from Missouri, from Canada. A mixture of Black and Asian, a real talent! Pretty sure Gib and staff, are looking for that Right Fit, D1 transfer(s), who have talent like Negus. However, Gib, wants to go global, still tap into Asia , Polynesia, wherever, talent can be found. Along with the USA talent, HS, AAU, JC ranks. He can land an Evan Fitzner, a high get, or these Senegal , or others from Africa, who are really gifted, athletically, and coach them well, He would take a roster of 15, not necessarily McDonalds All Americans or top 100 talent, have guys who will play in system, love coaches, teammates and Hawaii, do well in and out of school and are winners on the court.

    Hfan09, would be nice every few years, to have a couple of D1 transfers like Negus, hope he is patient, his skillset, and love of Hawaii, and hopefully Hawaii will have a great year this year, bodes well for the next 3 years. 2014-2017!

  21. …19, 16, 17 Wins with this schedule barely puts us in The Top 150
    20+ and we probably start Pushing Top 100….

    Transfers are Good;
    BUT They ARE “SECOND Chances”

    By the Time Negus scores his first point for UH, it will be his THIRD Season
    (Lucky we get up to Three More…)
    Also was Third with Spearman;
    Fourth with Standhardinger
    Fourth with Shamburger….

    i’m Sure Gib prefers ’em First Round Ready…
    and wants to Start Winning the First Commitment….

    Winning and Playing DEEP into Post-Season Tourneys will help start that cycle…
    The One-More-Year-of-Prep Freshmen are a Good Level:
    Valdes, Dressler, Jawato, Smith, Hackman, maybe even Nevels…

    Next Higher is Fotu…the Beginning of the Ready to Play Freshmen?… Jovanovic? Thomas?

  22. They talked about the twin towers from Senegal a number of years ago. Now, DA Trio!

  23. Eagle,

    I respect your outlook on Gib’s recruiting emphasis. From the very beginning that was his mission,

    1)the best HS seniors, get them in to UH as freshmen with 4 yrs to develop. Every so often, he would recruit an Isaac Fotu. Or maybe even an Evan Fitzner, or one of the Senegal athletes.

    2)recruit, freshmen that completed JC or Community college, good students and athletes with 3 yrs to play as incoming sophomores, i.e. Quincy Smith.

    3)Look for the second chance D1 transfers. UH has benefitted by having Christian Standhardinger, hopefully Davis Rozitis will have major impact this senior year,Brandon Spearman and Negus Webster-Chan, Zane Johnson, very good basketball players and students.

    Personally, I believe with Standhardinger, Shamburger, Rozitis, Spearman and Isaac Fotu, Gib has and outstanding core of athletes who get along and know what it takes to win. They are very hungry and will lead by maximum effort.

    Added bonus: Athleticism upgrade- Garrett Nevels(scorer, hops, quickness), Quincy Smith(winner from HS and JC-hops, quicks), and next year Negus Webster-Chan. The much improved, hope he brings it, I believe he will, his monster athletic game to regular season!

    Great young guys to develop: Caleb Dressler, Stefan Jovanovich, Michael Thomas, Jack Hackman, Nikola Filopovich.

    And on the recruiting radar, very closely watche and relationships established, the athletes from Senegal, Evan Fitzner, and we will soon learn of more that Gib is keeping an eye on for one , two, three years down the road.

    I have said, it before, the UH MBB NCAA D1 program, is a huge challenge because of geography, however, Gib searching globally, and developing great contacts and friendships, in particular with families of the young men, is the right way to go. Gib does not have to battle the Dukes, North Carolinas, Kentucky’s for athletes, he is going anywhere aroung the planet to find the RIGHT FIT guys for Men’s hoops squad.

    I sincerely hope all the guys on the team stay healthy and rehab well. With the 3 seniors, plus Shamburger, Fotu, and the added athleticism, UH Rainbow Warriors, can have good season.

    Eagle, correct on that, and hundreds, maybe a thousand or more long time, and new fans, know that 20+ wins, National Invitaional Tournament or NCAA championship bid invites, are the goals every year.

    Hope the best. In Year Four of Gib Arnold Era, I believe, even before NWC plays next year, if the guys battle and play to win, with Basketball smarts, they can have great season, and go to Post Season, hopefully NCAA’s.

    Uhfanzonly saying: Go UH Men’s Basketball team, the only NCAA D1 Men’s Basketball program in the middle of the Pacific!!


  24. Apologies, Edit to above post, forgot to insert Aaron Valdes as a great athlete added to the mix for this year’s team, he could be a real force at the 3 or even stretch 4.!!

    Added bonus: Athleticism upgrade- Garrett Nevels(scorer, hops, quickness), Quincy Smith(winner from HS and JC-hops, quicks), and next year Negus Webster-Chan. The much improved, Aaron Valdes,hope he brings it, I believe he will, his monster athletic game to regular season!

  25. To above posts, forgot to mention by name: Aaron Valdes, the young man worked really hard this past RS year and summer. He is extremely athletic, and consensus is, if Aaron is in system with what Gib wants, along with returnees and new, and RS’s active, UH could be very, very good this year.!!

    I am sure, ALL the 16 or 17 guys , walkons and scholarship guys are working hard every day to get better and get to the big dance the NCAA’s , I know that is Keith, Christian , Isaac, Brandon Spearman’s and Davis Roztis’ goal, along with Gib and entire staff, and team, young and old!

    Uhfanzonly1. Cheering on the Rainbow Warriors to Rainbow Classic Title, Diamond Head Classic Title, and the Big West Conference Tournament title, UH wins all three, fantastic year, record wise and Basketball program ON THE RISE!!

    Go Rainbow Warriors, and coach Gib!

  26. LOOKS like Gib Fourth season is a definite improvement over Third.

    Also looks like steady improvement in the athletes weʻre pursuing
    and ultimately are getting (i think Aaron may have worked so hard he may have jumped
    the charts; but generally Thomas is considered the better recruit, perhaps as Jovanovic might be versus Dressler.)

    Was probably a calculation error to not pursue & get a Nevels or Quincy type one or two years earlier;
    Shamburger good (better late than never) & Spearman good;
    Ostrowski Pure Luck(?) to avoid disaster(s);
    Wish we coulda continued mining Manroop and Ozi…

    Looks like solid numbers and talent levels for Fourth season;
    Much Better than ʻSeven Freshmenʻ Gambit of Third season;
    Way Better than Non-Qualifiers of Second season;
    Lightyears better than Scramble of First season…

    Overall, Tracking Well, Good Improvement Curve
    Better Talent
    Better Disposition, Attitudes and Maturity
    Better Athleticism, Skills and BBIQ
    Better, Way Better, Academics

    Good, Good and Maybe Way Good…

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