It’s been a pretty good week for University of Hawaii sports. Here are some of the highlights:
>> Wins by both basketball teams, including a Big West regular-season championship-clincher for the Rainbow Wahine. This is huge since it guarantees UH a place in the conference tournament semifinals. They just need to win two games to advance to the NCAA Tournament.
>> Football coach Norm Chow completed his staff for the upcoming season by promoting Lance Samuseva to full-time defensive line coach and bringing in Abraham Elimimian to coach defensive backs. Going from zero to two former Warrior players on the full-time staff probably doesn’t translate into a winning season against an ominous schedule after four straight losing seasons, but it is definitely a big step in the right direction.
>> The baseball team now had three wins in a row after romping over Pepperdine 15-8 in UH’s first road game of the year. With six homers already, UH has 150 percent of the number of roundtrippers 10 games into the 2015 season than it did all of 2014.
Some of that can be attributed to livelier baseballs being used this season, but it’s also pretty obvious that the Rainbows are putting a stronger lineup on the field.
>> UH received a $1.2 million anonymous donation. It won’t solve all of the athletic department’s problems, and UH doesn’t get the money right away. But it’s much better than the proverbial poke in the eye with a sharp stick … especially considering all the negative financial news.
>> The men’s volleyball is coming off a sweep of Cal State Northridge.
>> It’s also been a sad week in the passing away of former basketball coach Larry Little (and yes, he was as nice as everyone is saying he was). Also, I just learned of the passing of former UH grad assistant trainer Takashi Tanaka. Tanaka was just 34. He was a very kind young man and helpful in other ways than being a trainer; for example, he served as an interpreter when teams from Japan played at UH.
>> Interviews for the new athletic director begin today. There is no credence to the rumor that today is Ben Jay’s last day in that post, unless as of last night he had not been informed of it. And, for the last time, his wife and kids DO NOT live in California (although they may, along with him, in the future). That stupid rumor was floated months ago by people who should know better, and some apparently still believe it. In other news, the world is still round.
>> I will be off a few days enjoying some time with family and friends. My next column will be in the Star-Advertiser on Wednesday, March 4.
>> Off-topic: Where does Spock rank all-time on the list of greatest wingmen?