Arnold’s Army has landed on Hawaii’s shores free of academic casualties.
Hawaii men’s basketball coach Gib Arnold confirmed that all nine newcomers were admitted and enrolled at Manoa for the start of the fall semester on Monday.
Arnold wants to begin workouts that day if everyone can get cleared physically and, in a couple of cases, by the NCAA. He said he doesn’t foresee any problems there.
"It’s phenomenal news. Everybody’s good," Arnold said. "There’s getting admitted, and there’s getting your paperwork in with the NCAA, and there’s still some work to do with a little bit of that. But we’re on top of all that. Everybody goes through it."
However, Arnold said sophomore forward Dominick Brumfield fractured his kneecap about a month ago and will need some recovery time before he is up to speed. Brumfield, a transfer from Big Bend Community College (Wash.), has three years to play three seasons.
"My therapist told me I’m on the road to be 100 percent before the season," Brumfield wrote in a text message.
Brumfield, sophomore forward Josten Thomas (College of Southern Idaho) and sophomore center Vander Joaquim (College of Eastern Utah) each had summer coursework to complete to get their associate’s degrees early and become eligible by the fall.
"It was more if they could do it in time, the JC kids who had to finish and qualify in three semesters," Arnold said. "Some off that stuff went down to the wire, but I think academically we brought in a pretty good crew. Those guys were trying to graduate early, and that’s always tough."
Junior point guard Anthony Salter (Iowa Western Community College) and high school graduates Jordan Coleman, Trevor Wiseman, Bobby Miles and Bo Barnes are the others available this season.
Pi’i Minns to get a chance
Pi’i Minns (Kamehameha ’09) will take his best shot at walking on.
The 6-foot-3 guard played in four games at Chaminade last year before tearing his labrum. He recently put in his transfer to UH and is officially enrolled.
After talking with Arnold, Minns felt confident he’d be able to play.
"When I was speaking with him today, we really didn’t talk about that (trying out)," Minns said. "It was like I was joining them, I guess. Whether I have to try out, that’s not going to be an issue. I’m just going to go at it with everything."
Minns said he got his first-year eligibility back through a medical hardship, and will have a full four years to play after transferring (he must redshirt this season).
The 2009 state player of the year got a recommendation to Arnold from his workout partner, former Washington State and ‘Iolani standout Derrick Low.
Twilight Ohana in limbo
The madness in Hawaii might be deferred, or might not happen at all.
The national date that men’s and women’s basketball teams can start official practices is Oct. 15.
Arnold has said he wants to host some kind of Twilight Ohana event for the public, but the Rainbow Wahine game against San Jose State will be played that night at the Stan Sheriff Center.
"I don’t know if we’re going to be able to do it," Arnold said. "We’ll see if we can work around it and figure out what we’re gonna do."