Gameday: Coastal Carolina

The Stan Sheriff Center is going Coastal this afternoon.

Hawaii (1-0) meets Coastal Carolina (0-1) on Day 2 of the Outrigger Resorts Rainbow Classic. It’s a matchup of a team that’s been to the last two NCAA Tournaments but lost a couple of key components, against a UH team that has its nucleus back and wants to get to the NCAA stage.

It’ll be interesting to see how many minutes Roderick Bobbitt gets tonight. UH leaned heavily on him in both its exhibition and its opening win against Montana State. Coach Eran Ganot will try to give him a blow where he can, but how long can UH afford to keep him out?

For different reasons, keep your eye on the minute count of Isaac Fleming, as well. He played 22 minutes off the bench in the opener. He remains one of the team’s most important players and it will be interesting to see if and when Ganot integrates him more into the rotation … possibly at the expense of minutes for Quincy Smith.

Next, who’s going to catch fire from downtown tonight? Last time it was Sai Tummala — his 3-point barrage turned out to be crucial in UH maintaining a comfortable lead.

Coastal Carolina — the “Chants” as they go for short — still have a number of experienced players and a veteran coach. UH is a 7-point favorite, so this one could be more competitive overall than the MSU game.


UH made the signings of guards Matt Owies and Drew Buggs official on Sunday morning. (It was a little anticlimactic, as Owies and Buggs already revealed their signings on social media in recent days.)

Here was Ganot on the two in a UH release: “It’s always a great day when you can announce the additions of two very special people and future leaders to your program. Drew and Matty exemplify everything you want this program to be about. Simply put, they get it. They are about all the right things on the court, off the court and in the classroom. Not surprisingly, they come from tremendous families and from successful basketball programs. They understand and appreciate how special Hawaii is and embrace being pillars in the community. We’re looking forward to following their progress this year and can’t wait for them to join us next fall!”

Ganot on Owies: “He is highly respected by his peers and for all the right reasons. His competitive drive and his commitment to improvement are contagious. Also, his experience with the Melbourne Tigers program and his many opportunities to represent his country at national youth events has proven invaluable.”

Ganot on Buggs: “Drew brings great versatility in his ability to play both guard positions on both sides of the ball. He is dedicated, determined, and has a bright future. He has always been someone who can fill the stat sheet and do anything and everything for the team to be at its best. His leadership has been exceptional for his highly successful basketball program in Long Beach Poly and the Earl Watson Elite program.”

Here was Owies in the release: “I chose the University of Hawaii because it seems like the perfect fit for me, as the style of play that the team is going to be running really suits the way I like to play. The culture that is being created by Coach Ganot and the other coaches, which is one of hard work, always having each other’s backs and winning is one that I wanted to be a part of. I can’t wait to be able to help the team win and get to the NCAA tournament again.”

And Buggs: “I really liked Coach Ganot and his staff. They were straightforward with me and I liked the vibe that I got from the team and program as a whole when I was out there. I believe they are building something special and I’m excited to join the Hawaii basketball family.”