Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Meet the Warriors: Gibson Johnson


In the University of Hawai’i basketball team’s search for post players and leaders during this preseason, Gibson Johnson has not been hesitant to raise his hand for both roles.

“I know I’m the only person that has experience at the center, so I feel that my role as a junior and as someone that has played center before (in junior college) … I’m going to have to play a lot of center,” said Johnson, a 6-foot-8 transfer from Salt Lake Community College. “I’m used to guarding big guys in the post, and I can stretch the floor, so that’s going to be my role.”

Johnson is one of just five active players on the roster competing for rotation spots at the center and power forward positions (true freshmen Ido Flaisher and Zigmars Raimo, sophomore Jack Purchase and junior Darryl Matthews are the others).

Although Johnson’s size might be better suited for the power forward spot, he said he is willing to take on the role of center, if that is what the team needs right now.

“This style of offense is perfect for me because not only do we work inside out, I grew up (playing) a guard,” he said. “I learned how to shoot the 3, I always was passing; now that I’m playing in the post, I can still use those skills as a 5.”

Johnson, who was on the junior college national championship team at Salt Lake CC last season, is also emerging as a vocal leader among the group of current UH post players.

“Growing up, I went to a lot of Rick Majerus camps at the University of Utah and he always really focused on being vocal,” Johnson said. “All my coaches growing up instilled that in me. I’m a super-competitive person and so that kind of shows on the floor through me talking.”

Johnson is one of 10 newcomers to the UH roster this season, but he has been on the island since July. In addition to being a part of the championship team – Electricians Hawaii – in the College Basketball Summer League, Johnson has had time to adjust to life on and off the Manoa campus.

“We’re in the basketball gym a lot; there’s not a whole lot of days we can get out, but when we do have days off, I’ll go to Makapu’u Beach or something like that,” he said. “I like to see Hawai’i, but the people are great here and that’s a big reason why I came here.”


  1. Lots of people think the world of Rick Majerus.
    I had to look it up, but ‘Ah sai ee” is Acai Berry. Evidently Acai berry pudding. Anything pudding has got to be good. Well, I’m going out this weekend looking for an authentic Açaí bowl.

  2. While he was taking trips around the nation, and did not elicited anything about Hawaii after,
    thought he was just a tripper. Disappointed the only ‘big’ option as money lost!

    Well, fate has it that no Power Five was impressed and Hawaii was desperate.

    Something is better than nothing; Couple of 6-4s did hold their own in the passed.

    His muscle-definition not so pronounced, stamina unproven; Could be a defensive liability.

    We’re all in this together, just do our best to see how the basketball bounces!?

  3. n2o4joy….we have 6-10 Ido Flaisher as center too.

  4. Mr. Johnson was recruited by NC State and did take an official visit there so he had interest from some bigger named programs. He’s going to have to carry most of the load while Flaisher and Raimo get up to speed being true freshman and Matthews is a walk on.

  5. Gib’s already mellowed, still intense but no need to ‘come off’ as Joe cool…
    I think already more real…vocal and effective is good for the classroom, life and basketball court;

    I’m glad Zigmars and Ido were found and added so we have size and numbers (at least fouls, but I know coaches will have them ALL Playing SMART) so Gib, Purchase, Matthews and Noah Allen don’t have to sacrifice fouls, PT And Scoring to defend and challenge the front line, boards…

    Despite shortages in D-1 size and experience — “Veterans” after 5-7 games(?),
    I would expect this team to challenge, even surprise, much of the competition …


    Here’s a Thought… ‘maybe’ Rolo and Staff are a Ganot-Class Coach and Staff
    (Early-On Asking Too Much?) Quickly Into First Place in Conference…

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