Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Meet the Warriors: Michael Thomas

Michael Thomas has yet to play a minute for the University of Hawai’i basketball team, but he is already proving to be quite the well-rounded student-athlete.

The 6-foot-7 true freshman forward has been learning the system of head coach Gib Arnold for the past few weeks, but also makes sure to set aside time for his academics and his faith.


“Be able to rebound, run, do what ever Gib wants me to do defensively, and really get after it,” he said of his role so far with the Warriors.

Thomas was mostly used as a post player at El Camino Real High School, but he eventually sees himself as a small forward with Hawai’i.

He also has all-academic aspirations, and is already eyeing an accounting degree. He said he often spends three hours a day studying for his current classes.

“I want to go each school year averaging a 3.5 (grade point average) and above,” he said. “It’s going to be tough, but I think I can do it.”

Thomas has a strong Christian faith, and he reserves much of his Sundays for time with his newfound church in Manoa.

“It’s great,” he said. “It takes up a lot of time where I could be doing other things that I shouldn’t be. I know people in church are really supportive of my schedule because it’s so jam-packed with basketball and school and study hall and all that stuff. They still understand and meet with me and make time for me. It’s refreshing to see that group of people and it’s so family-oriented, just like the school is, the team is and how Hawaii is as a whole.”


  1. Eagle: Michael Thomas, Mike T. has arrived in the house. Hopefully he will take us to the next level over 4 years. Great young man, with great parents and Ohana!

    Welcome to the UH MBB ohana Mike!

    Go Rainbow Warriors!

  2. Howzit Mike, Eagle and WI insider , plus UHF and hoopsa say, welcome to UH MBB team. Great student, great person. Keep working hard in school, life and in classroom you will do well!

    Aloha and Mahalo to the Thomas Ohana for letting mike sign with University of Hawaii!
    Great young athlete, huge upside!


  3. Interesting, kind of thought with Mike’s HS experience and his growing body, he would be used as that hybrid 3/4, both He and I think Aaron Valdes would make great bookend hybrid PF’s coming in for Fotu and Standhardinger, if they got into foul trouble, or needed a break.

    Also , with Aaron and MT’s length, they can bother a lot of opponents shots, get putbacks, short jumpers, and really important, as hoops and I mentioned, Gib wants them AV and MT, to concentrate on D and rebounding plus running in transistion. Gib has so many choices, go big, go small, go hybrid, big and small, all press team, AV, MT, 3 guards, could create havoc to catch up or pull away in a game.

    Great to have a guys, 6’6 1/2″ 200 lbs,and growing with a 7’1″ wingspan!

    Awsome, that is what interests NBA Scouts, they measure wingspan, to see how athlete can disrupt other opponents. MT has bright future, well spoken, good academic guy, and is a low maintenance guy, much success Mike!


  4. Mahalo, Dayton!
    Welcome, Michael & Thomas ʻOhana

    Good to get a sense of our youngest Newbies…
    i see what uhf & Gib were referring to about MT coming out of his shell…
    Freshman First Full Semester, Hawaiʻi, UH, Academics, Dorm, Church, food, First Full Weeks of (Brutal) Practices, Continuing Workouts IS A Lot to acclimate to, even after intros like Summer Session, Summer League, beachwork…itʻs ʻeasyʻ to see why even the redshirt freshmen are experiencing body impact/acute and chronic body breakdowns — it takes time to adjust, strengthen, learn systems and perform at high levels, much less D-1 court/prime time…

    so need to learn patience, even temper expectations…(maybe HFʻs point?)

    iʻll Add that a 9/6 freshman season like Josh Fox or 10/5 like Isaac Fotu,
    look even better when considering their more ʻmere mortalʻ teammates…;-} …

    As with Fotu, Donʻt Cowtail to those Feisty Upperclassmen! [He! He!] Take the D-Ball away, Challenge for PT, even Prime Time and Learn what it takes to be successful and Win(!) with the game on the line — iʻm (personally) glad this team is peppered/seasoned with and led by D-1 Experienced and Championship-honed middle and Upper Classmen who ideally will be transferring that maturity, performance-under-fire burnishing, honing and metal-toughening to their more youthful teammates — and that we donʻt have to Experience the Losing-Growing Pains of Thinner/More Youth-Dependent Teams (some in BW, some on football/soccer fields, but as WVB might remind us, it Is Tough to be Great Every Day, Every Game even IF You ARE a Top-Ten-ner)…

    Go ʻBows!
    WIN ʻBows! (Even Better)

    Green/White Scrimmage ʻFirst-Look/Debut only a Week away…
    Soon to even take on a little Bluegrass/Louisville Southern Fried Flavoring…
    and Thouroughbred Sprint-Training…

    Keep Lookinʻ UP!, Steppinʻ Up!, Program and Fans!

  5. Dear Parents of Mike T:

    Your growing son is doing better than you ever expected in Paradise >>
    ~1. 1/17 of THE INCOMPARABLE of UHMBB prepped to create history.
    ~2. A high caliber candidate for an upper scale degree in ACCOUNTING.
    ~3. Grained an inch in height, with the possibility of 1-2″ more before long (wings too?).
    ~4. Aiming for a 3.5(+) GPA, qualifier as Outstanding Scholar-Athlete.
    ~5. Getting bigger, stronger, faster.. as a progressive ‘GRINDING’ programs developed.
    ~6. 4-5 years of full scholarships can be his privilege for the taking.
    ~7. Maintain religious status – as a humble, kind, respecting individual steadfastly.
    ~8. Successful pro-ball expected to be in his future thru his continuous effort.
    ~9. Restaurant ownership to be realized, in the footstep of football-kicker Mr. Peter Kim.

    This is a beautiful American Dream, as well as an Aloha Spirit Hoop Dream –
    Desirable for any all-in hard-working young man!!!

  6. Ok Mike. Eat Sleep Study and practice Hard. And lift the weights. That’s it brah.

  7. Now the reasoning for huge potentially 15 man roster makes sense. Caleb injured back take time to heal, we need you healthy Caleb! Niko, young guy willing, dislocated shoulder. Negus RS transfer sit out this year.

    So, 14 active guys healthy for scrimmage next week, better to have more guys to help roster and compete, than a skeleton bench.

    Good foresight Gib. Keep the guys safe and healthy!

    Go Rainbow Warriors!

  8. Sorry make that , with Negus, I believe he can play in scrimmage, not exhibition, I think correct me if wrong! So make that possibly 15 guys healthy to scrimmage next week Oct 19th 2013 SSC at 700pm

    Go Rainbow Warriors!

    Speedy recovery to Niko, and Caleb!

  9. Hey Mike T:
    Had the pleasure of watching you guys scrimmage today.
    Very impressive performance overall on your part (your 3* rating start radiating).
    You got my vote to make the team (keep going)!

  10. Got some height
    Got some wingspan
    Plenty of Smarts
    Godʻs Guidance and Temperament
    (Advantage Versus Vander)
    Good Motor
    Good Athleticism
    Got Some Heritage
    Three Stars Worth for ʻStartersʻ
    Getting called out as a Fast Learner
    Head Coach Foresees & Projects Great Things
    Keep Climbing
    At a Faster Rate
    Better, Smoother, Steeper Learning Curve
    Make-Up for Teammatesʻ Headstarts?
    Surpass Opposition
    Like Standhardinger and Fotu
    Who are Right Beside you Daily to Help Teach, Challenge and Elevate
    Every Day ʻHighest Standardsʻ in The West
    Practices Tougher, More Challenging than Games?
    Surrounded by TWO All-Conference Players and
    Challenged by Redshirt Three-Star Transfer Negus as well
    Who will also be by your side (instead of opponentsʻ uniform)
    Hours and Hours of Great Fish Coaching
    Improving Skills
    Great Speed & Quickness, Explosivenes & Weight Training
    Improving Athleticism
    Improving Maturity
    Meshing Your Game into The Gib Systems
    Like Second Nature
    Canʻt-Miss Prospects?
    Iʻll Say…
    Likely Overwhelming…
    A Little Like Fotu?

  11. Checked out YouTube video of hilites from game Mike was in this past Jan. 2013. Wow. It is like nite and day, his physical transformation since arriving in islands this pas July! Bigger, Taller, now getting comfortable playing with D1 competition. Mike, as Gib stated WILL help UH MBB this year.

    And you are correct Eagle, Coach is not putting the whole load on Mike’s shoulders, or the RS freshmen or true freshmen, All have an assigned role, and Mike can help in a lot of areas. That wingspan, his being lefthanded like Bill Amis, can help him to reject some shots, since his left hand will be right there on majority of right handed shooters.

    Mike, very intelligent guy, BBIQ another as Jack Hackman stated. Gib and staff recruited, guys who are academically and Basketball wise smart, has the makings of winning team.

    Agree n2joy, and Eagle, Mike has HUGE upside, will be a talent for 4 years, starting THIS year. Hfan09, let’s, cheer on whatever the 3/4 spot young guys can do, they will help UH to win a lot of ball games this year. Very smart BB wise team, all 17 of them!

    Go Rainbow Warriors!
    Next scrimmage, Sat Oct 19 2013 at SSC 700pm, Free admission! Green vs White, go get em freshmen! MIke good job and the whole team, Isaac has turned out to have great 3 point shooting touch, if he and Christian, start hitting several per game, BWC look out, UH will have a lot of firepower, from all 5 spots!


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