It was the ultimate bit part.
A few times a game in the 2015-16 season, the Hawaii reserves would execute a choreographed stunt at the end of the bench, usually to laugh-out-loud effect. The Superman. The Bowling Pins. The Home Run. The group became known as “Hawaii 5-O.”
UH basketball’s three outgoing seniors, Jack Purchase, Brocke Stepteau and Sheriff Drammeh, count themselves as “5-O” alums. They play the final home game of their careers 8 p.m. Saturday against Cal State Northridge.
The three went from those cameo appearances into part- or full-time starting jobs the following three years.
Drammeh, of Sweden, was promoted the earliest and helped the 2015-16 team in its late-season run with his timely charge-taking and energy plays. Of course, that wasn’t the end to his (usually good natured) antics; if anything, they became more frequent.
Purchase, the Auburn transfer from Australia, started his sophomore and senior seasons and was the Big West Sixth Man of the Year in 2017-18. He leaves as the program’s career 3-point leader (188 and counting) but will also be remembered for his passing ability.
And Stepteau, the Dallas native, had maybe the most remarkable journey of the three, going from a walk-on with a totally different coaching staff to a scholarship starter and team captain while bailing his team out of tough spots more times than can be counted.