Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Literacy campaign continues at Kainalu


The University of Hawai’i men’s basketball program continued its efforts to promote literacy this morning as head coach Gib Arnold and three players visited Kainalu Elementary School in the latest installment of the “Give Back Hawai’i” campaign.

Arnold, along with Mike Thomas, Stefan Jovanovic, and Niko Filipovich spent the morning at the Kailua school — the fifth literacy event of the young season. The event began as the coach and players attended an assembly and then split up to read to individual classrooms.

“It was a joy to work with Kainalu Elementary this morning and we are excited to partner with them,” said Arnold, whose youngest son Ace is a third grader at the school. “All of my kids attended school here and I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to give back.”

Kainalu Elementary administrators capitalized on the presence of the Hawai’i men’s basketball team to promote their “Reading Log Challenge,” which is designed to maximize reading participation among students. The top 100 readers at the school will earn free admission to a Dec. 29 basketball game against Southern University.


“I had a blast this morning,” Niko Filipovich said. “The staff and students at Kainalu Elementary were a lot of fun and I look forward to seeing them at our game.”

Thomas also felt strongly about the event.

“I really valued my experience at Kainalu this morning,” Thomas said. “The students here were great.”

Kainalu Elementary offers preschool through sixth grade and has a student population of about 500. “Give Back Hawai’i” was developed by Arnold to serve local communities. Other points of emphasis include anti-bullying and promoting a culture of respect for women. So far, his campaign has reached Waianae Intermediate, Voyager Charter Academy, Kamaile Charter Academy, and Waikiki Elementary.

(Photos and information provided by Tim Bross / UH Athletics)


  1. thankyou for giving back to youth coach gib and team.first class student athletes.

  2. You said it all gibisgood2. Much mahalo to UHMBB for all they do for our communities.

    Is Mike growing his hair back?

  3. Thanks, Dayton

    @ SSC, On 12/ 29, i Hope Billy V Introduces the Schools and Kids in the Stands so that ALL the Visitors/Fans in Attendance get a Feel for The Impact and Wisdom or 5-600 Better Readers and Prospective Lifelong Future Fans …

    MORE Reading and Meeting Good Guys/”Stars” may make for Smarter / More Fans

    Maybe they ought to show a Highlight Video on the Scoreboard? [ DM & Co.?]

    ONE DAY we’ll hear Impact Stories…
    As these 100’s of Kids and Handful of Players Continue to Make an Impact…

  4. Looks like Gib is trying to push the tempo this year. Good for the fans if it works, like the Fab Five type of play. Drawback is that turnovers may increase.

    Last year, UH had an assist to turnovers ratio of 1.2 and also less turnovers averaged per game than their opponents by +1.5. Could be due to the somewhat slowed down offense, with Shamburger running the point.

  5. Carrying over from yesterday’s discussion about who can make the rotation…

    It doesn’t seem like UH has a certified ball handler other than Quincy this year. Every vid I see with Filipovich, he makes soft turnovers, and his style is “dribble slowly to the top of the key and stand there”. I think some have compared him to Hiram Thompson in the past, which does not inspire confidence.

    Basically the reason why point guard position is so important on this year’s team is because that is where the biggest improvement can be made from last year. If we want UH to be better this year, the point guard needs to be a lot better.

    The thing I like about Quincy is he seems different. I don’t want to watch another point guard for UH dribbling around the perimeter. So Filipovich is not even in my rotation at point guard. I think when Gib praised his on-ball defense, it was his way of indirectly motivating the other point guards.

    As for Bobbitt, I didn’t see him playing any point in the Saturday scrimmage. Albeit that video was edited for highlights. I remember in the season opening scrimmage though that he looked bad. Turned the ball over at least 3 times just dribbling it off his hand, real soft turnovers. Just go back to the video and watch him. Other things I see, is he’ll make a short drive then pass the ball to the wrong guy (eg Zach Buscher, probably the last option on offense). You can tell he is a juco transfer, and needs to really put in time learning UH’s offense.

    When Quincy needs a break, maybe UH lets 20 More Pounds Of Muscle handle the rock some times?

  6. Keen observations champ.
    Quite a few players have 20 more pounds of muscle, I am not sure which one you are talking about. Of note is that Negus in particular is a very good passer, and is a student of the game. If we were to run a ‘classic’ offense, perhaps the point guard would need to be a ‘classic’ point guard. But this team has he potential to be very dynamic, with some flexibility, because of Negus, of how the point guard plays. I think we will expect our PG to be able to shoot AND get to the rim this year. And of course not turn the ball over, ALTHOUGH perhaps last year, I don’t know, perhaps there was too much emphasis on the PG not turning the ball over at the expense of the pace of the game and everything else. Just naturally, all these players bring something different to the floor. Quincy, and Fleming too, can get to the rim and are pretty good shooters. Gib has said that Bobbitt has shot the ball well in Juco in the past. From our videos we still don’t know, but that all may be attributed to his injury and recovery. I think there is some confidence there. Filipovich, l think, can adapt. He might get a chance to play. Of the three, Fleming the freshman, Quincy 20 lbs light, and Filipovich, I think Filipovich might just offer that extra energy on D. Not to jinx the team, but I recall Bobby Miles playing shut-down Defense against Sham in a game in San Jose. It is questionable if someone could keep up that kind of energy level throughout a whole game. Miles didn’t start that game but came in to spell the starter. That could actually be good for our team in that a point guard off the bench could come in with an explosive energy level on D while substituting. I haven’t seen Quincy do that on D, although we have seen him turn on some kind of afterburners to get to the rim on offense. Fleming needs to improve his speed on offense although he has great potential. Again, haven’t seen him play enough to know if he can play shut-down defense. And then there is Bobbitt. Size means something, and he played at Indian Hills. Hope he fully recovers and gets back to, and improves, from his old form. And that his game translates to D1. He has got the teammates to help him do that. Finally, in addition to Negus being able to pass the ball, I think that Sammis has all the potential to be a point-forward or point something with his passing. And having Sammis on the floor I think brings a heck of a lot of energy on D (almost beat out Nevels in King of the Beach).
    A lot of options on this team !

  7. Besides the point, someone or some others have to make up the rebounding lost from the reliable Standhardinger leaving. We out rebounded opponents 35.9 to 31.5 or 4.4 average per game. He was the leading rebounder at 8.4 per game, followed by Fotu at 6.1, Spearman, 4.5 , and Rozitis, 3.3 .

    And someone(s) has to make up for Standhardinger’s 18.1 points per game which were mostly higher percentage shots inside, that drew fouls. 34.8 % of his points were from FT’s .

  8. What really threw Gib and the team off, the unfortunate injuries and guys still rehabbing. By all accounts, it seems that in next week or so, Sammis will be ready…Jawato, careful with that concussion..and Quincy, the back..

    Bobbitt, that metal plate in arm, he would normally go above the rim and flush, or take lob and dunk.. he is one of the better JC winning PG’s in the nation, quick hands to get clean steals. NorCal, one of the top HS combo guards.

    Basically, give the TEAM TIME TO HEAL,.. remember only about 2 weeks into practices, full court, so they have to step it up, however, Gib and team, slower to get going on O and D, because, when some guys are healthy, others are not.

    Luxury, that Gib does have about 12-13, very athletic buys, with good BB IQ, they have to have chemistry, and know what to do.. if uptempo, more turnovers… might have to go half court sets and break when can. Still, UH the potential, though young team, they ARE ONE!

    Go Bows, Warriors Rainbows..When All they Guys Healthy, and playing great TEAM ball, they will, or can be very good. JUST GIVE THEM TIME.. and time is ticking down to HPU exhibition game, we shall see, who is PG, SF, C, SG, PF etc..the first 10 guys at least.. Sammis is a Beast, not the tallest, however he would not back down to any guy, including 7’6″ 300 lb Mamadou!

  9. Because MORE Guys can Penetrate to the Hoop (Q, Fleming, Bobbitt)
    AND (I think) ALL Guards CAN Shoot
    AND MORE Guys On the Court Have Passing Skills (Negus, Sammis, Janks)
    AND MORE Guys (Overall) Have Serviceable (Open Court) Dribbling Skills

    i EXPECT That Gib CAN HOLD The Line on Sloppy, Lackadaisical Passes (Already Called Out Fleming); AND UNFORCED Turnovers

    With Better Shooters And Receivers (Passers usually also CATCH Better)
    I Have a Hard Time Believing GIB Will SETTLE For Dribbling Guards
    (They Run the Weave, But SHOULD Also Penetrate AND Pass for Assists out of it)
    EXCEPT For REAL Early as They are Learning System Options

    I DON”T Think they’re Really Running (With ANY Smoothness) ANY Offense
    So the (Pointless, Aimless) dribbling at this time should improve;
    Filipovich SHOULD Know ‘ALL’ the Offenses
    BUT Teammates are Not Screening, Picking or Moving to The Right Spots, Ready-to-Shoot, yet, so he’s probably Holding Back from making unexpected/ unanticipated passes. [Side Effect of the Injury Bugs, and Lack of Experienced Players (Fotu, Negus)…

    REBOUNDING IS A Potential Short-Term Weakness – i’m Hoping Sammis’ Intensity helps to Instill a Culture of Blocking Out AND Going For Rebounds (BY M.Thomas, Valde’s and Fotu; With BONUS Of Garrett, Negus and Bobbitt);

    i Think ONLY One-Half of Team USES Athleticism: Valde’s, MT, Garrett, Bobbitt, Negus, Fleming, Reyes, Maybe FOTU and Jankovic) [BUT They’re ALSO in TOP Ten Most Likely to Play]

    NEXT TWO Weeks’ Practice should Be WAY More Valuable and Get More Results (Improvement)…

    GIB COULD BE Right about The Team (Hope So)…
    OR Might Be Over-Confident (Hope Not)…

    (UNLESS JP & JW Start Taking Time to Attend Practice
    THEY’RE Mostly Ignorant –
    ALL Scouting Reports should be Out-of-Date VERSUS Last Three to Six Months-PLUS Work & Improvement —
    GREAT Players are made in The Off-Season…)

  10. Akuhead2 Samis as a point is difficult. Potential maybe but I have not seen anything that highlights his handles at all. We have several points on this team and all have different abilities like Gob said. Q can run the point but I have issues with him seeing over the defense during the offense. Also, he needs to not feel he has to always be the one to go to the hoop on a fast break rather than passing it off. Bobbit played well in the scrimmage. The gym was hot and humid and players were playing hard the whole time so mistakes did happen. A lot was missed in the video because of editing. NWC would be great to slide into the 1 at times. He is tall and can cause a lot of matchup issues. He ran the point at Mizzu. Don’t be surprised if you see a tall athletic lineup lineup once in a while.

    We can run all we want but if we can’t stop anyone then what’s the point. Defense will win us games, trying to out run other teams will not. If we can’t make stops we won’t win. We also lacked the speed to close out on the shooters. That has to be addressed. If you imagine Fotu shooting 3s don’t you think the guy he is guarding will do the same. He isn’t a great perimeter defender. His inside D is real good when he doesn’t worry about fouling. His perimeter d needs some work. MT worries me with his fouling. So far he has shown improvement but let’s see when season starts. I have a lot more scouting reports to share but chew on this for now. Mahalo

  11. When game one against High Point, and if UH can win that RBC, with good team play, great defense, rebounding, closing out games, FT shooting, good BB IQ… then, we say, this team will win a lot of games.

    STILL WAAAAYYY TOOO EARLLLY to tell.. Guys just started practicing as a team, Wait Until All the guys are healed… Gib crash course, with Christian able to rebound and bring ball up, and finish with that spin or right handed layup and one, that was a great move.. Would figure, NWC, healthy, he is, as Servante says , and I echo, Like a Julian Sensley type player, not as heavy, however facilitate, Really a PG mentality with long 3 ball range.. NWC,, he , Nevels, and Fotu,,,.. that trio, can really be the Top 3, to lead team… NWC, would be the catalyst, the replacement for loss of Spearman and Christian, if Thomas, Valdes, Bobbitt, Fleming, Jovanovich and Jankovich really step up…look out.. team HAS POTENTIAL… Give the boys about a month into season, we will see who steps up..

    Love talking UH hoops, THE PREMIER UH SPORT right now!

  12. Women’s scrimmage on Oct 26. Anyone want to guess why the teams were set up uneven in “talent” ? 4 of the probable starters as of today are on the Green team. ( Note: Three Brianas with different spellings on the roster )

    Ashleigh Karatiana
    Destiny King
    Morgan Mason
    Connie Morris
    Shawlina Segovia
    Sarah Toeaina
    Justice Toailoa
    Brianna Kennedy
    Breana Jones

    Briana Harris
    Shawna-Lei Kuehu
    Raja Moreno-Ross
    Jasmine Redmon
    Dalayna Sampton
    Angelina Smith
    Marissa Wimbley

  13. I think certain JC players can handle D1 basketball, especially a school like Indian Hills CC. UH MBB has had a history of quality guards coming from JUCCO—Tom Henderson and Anthony Carter the most noteworthy ones. Bobbitt just needs a little more time to feel confident with his elbow and get more playing time. He looks rusty alright but got quick hands and good anticipation for steals. He’s in the same mold of Henderson and Carter and I’m hoping that he will prove it as the days wear on. I think RunBows got that feeling too about Bobbitt. Some guys take awhile before things click.

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