Outside shooting came and went for the Hawaii basketball team in 2016-17. Its ho-hum 32.5 percent team accuracy on 3-pointers was sixth among nine Big West Conference members, and was especially felt at times given that UH runs a four-out offense.
The Rainbow Warriors hope their latest addition will make them a touch more deadly in that regard.
Riverside Community College 6-foot-4 wing Brandon Thomas, the younger brother of UH senior forward Mike Thomas, was made official by UH on Friday afternoon.
The last brothers to play for UH basketball were Rykin and Dyrbe Enos, although they did not play together. The Thomases are expected to be the first brothers on the same roster in the modern era (all college opponents) of UH basketball.
Brandon Thomas’ game is considerably different than his brother’s energy-and-post repertoire.
Thomas sank 41.1 percent of his 3-pointers his freshman season at Riverside Community College, which went 23-9 in the CCCAA. Of his 9.8 field-goal attempts per game, more than half (5.8) were from beyond the arc.
Riverside CC coach Phil Mathews said that while Thomas did not have any other Division I offers, that was because Thomas was expected to return for his sophomore season. He added it would’ve been much tougher for UH to get him at that point.
“He’s a great addition, great family, great person,” Mathews said. “Excellent student. Just a great kid. A joy to coach him. As a player, he’s going to be very good for them. He was one of our best shooters. I think his best basketball’s ahead of him. They’re getting him at the right time; I think he has a lot of growth in him. Athletic, quick, was one of our best players this year.
“Hawaii did a great job recruiting him throughout the year. Kept recruiting him and staying in contact with him. When it came time for him to decide, Hawaii was right there.”
Thomas is the fourth player added for the 2017 signing class (three of them for 2017-18), along with Samuta Avea, Jaaron Stallworth and Jessiya Villa. UH has two more scholarships it may award for next season.
Former Gonzaga guard Bryan Alberts is still out there as an undecided, at least publicly. According to CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein, Alberts has visits coming up to VCU and Florida International. If accurate, that would seem to make UH’s chances at Alberts quite a bit tougher.
Didn’t get a chance to put this in a blog earlier, but Matt Owies has found a home. He’s landed at Seattle University in the WAC.
— Matthew Owies (@mattowies) May 19, 2017
The Redhawks went 13-17 last year. Remember Manroop Clair? He went the same route, going to Seattle U after spending his freshman season at UH. Clair played three years there (he just finished his career in 2016-17) with his most meaningful action happening in 2015-16. That season, he averaged 8.1 points in 21.5 minutes per game.
Best of luck to Owies at his new home.