Uncertain times

With today’s news that the NCAA will investigate the Hawaii men’s basketball program, the next few weeks will certainly be interesting around the Manoa lower campus.

You can debate the merits of the college governing body sending representatives out here on the subject of assistant coach Brandyn Akana‘s apparent suspension self-imposed by UH. Certain parties believe the infraction that was committed has been totally overblown and was caught before real damage was done. Others say it was a very serious matter that cannot be overlooked.

Head coach Gib Arnold came out in staunch support of Akana in today’s paper. If you talk to just about anyone who knows Akana, they are likely to laud him for his character — before or after this event. But his future with the program is in question now, depending on the NCAA’s findings.

Nothing might come out of their trip out here. Or they might find something totally unrelated to tag some kind of penalty on UH; that’s always the danger once they find reason to go through your books.

Regardless, we’ll monitor the situation closely here at the paper.

What are your thoughts about the matter? Are you nervous for the program? Confident that the matter will be resolved quietly? Rolling your eyes at the NCAA for descending on another mid-major? Please share.



  1. JFByers March 19, 2014 6:29 pm

    truly the concern should be for the entire athletic department and all of its programs simply for the reason that chancellor Apple has made it publicly clear that athletics as a whole is becoming more of a burden for the university than anything else. In my personal opinion, Apple has stringed together enough ammunition disguised as effort should he finally feel the need to cripple the program to appease the upper campus mafia in their decades long angst towards uh athletics and those involved in athletics including the players the student athletes.

    you have them seeking and hiring a glorified accountant as their AD who’s previous resume includes that of a highly profitable bcs school and once he is unable to turn athletics into the black every year Apple can point and say “hey, we hired a great numbers guy from Ohio State and even he can’t turn uh athletics around.”

    then you have Apple “absorb” the paper debt from previous years yet where is he to be found when staunch and out dated polices from the uh foundation hinder attempts from athletic programs to fundraise via common sense as opposed to skirting self imposed uh foundation rules and laws that are not even documented as stone truths? where is Apple to be found?

    An investigation from the NCAA for a high profile athletic program is simply another notch in the bedpost for all those looking to knock off athletics at uh and for those the questionable actions from a few might as well be for all involved at lower campus.

  2. Paul A. Jackson March 19, 2014 6:35 pm

    I personally played in the 1998 Aloha State Games, and by the way we won the gold medal, with Brandyn Akana and his brother,not only is he one of high character,he also comes from a good family and solid background. This is just another bullying technique by the NCAAto try and run with something they dont have all the details on. When the smoke and mirrors clear they will realize that when it comes to Hawaii there is no pre-meditation or intent to do something un-ethical. Send your bullies to the top 5 conferences and get back with us.

  3. Aaron March 19, 2014 6:42 pm

    here’s a list of end-of-season incidents that come to mind:

    -Legal inquiries and allegations at the end of the 2011 season.
    -Freshmen transferring after 1 season even though they got considerable playing time (Barnes, Stokes, etc).
    -Trevor Wiseman refusing to enter a game near the end of the 2012 season, then transfers.
    -Vander Joaquim walking off the court before the last game of the 2013 season was over.
    -Someone on the staff forges information on a student application in 2014, which incurs an NCAA investigation.

    Gib’s only been here for 4 years and each of those four seasons has ended with some kind of negative news item. No matter how “overblown” this infraction is, it’s symptomatic of a program that can’t seem to keep its nose clean. If it takes the threat of an NCAA investigation for them to get their business straight, then so be it. I want to be a fan of a clean program.

  4. hossana March 19, 2014 7:31 pm

    I personally don’t care what kind of so-called nice guy Akana is and its been said he is a person of tremendous high character etc.. but something must have been amiss for him to be suspended and if he did tamper or did something with the transfer documents, then Akana and the whole basketball staff should be relieved of their duties…in other words…….clean house and start fresh to appease the NCAA …just like back in ’78 with Bruce O’Neil, Rick Pitino and el….no excuse, I mean, just no excuse for any kind of infraction, trivial or minor as it might be, to have taken place……..but if nothing occurred then Akana and the program are owed an apology by the NCAA….nothing more and nothing less.

  5. innocent observer March 19, 2014 8:19 pm

    if the ncaa is sending someone to investigate the matter, it is serious. even if the infraction had no real consequences, the fact that it was done intentionally without authority is serious enough to warrant some kind of sanctions, either against akana or the university.

  6. ALLAN March 19, 2014 8:39 pm


  7. Brian McInnis March 19, 2014 9:25 pm

    Thanks all for the feedback. This topic has drawn a wide range of opinions, and the spectrum you’ve given here is appreciated.

  8. poorboy March 19, 2014 9:42 pm

    NCAA have to send people to investigate, not good. It must be something to have them travel all those thousands of miles away. However, for Gib to come out in Public defense of Brandyn, he must know, and his staff that it perhaps is not as serious a nature. Maybe minor thing. Otherwise Gib is really sticking out his neck.
    Brian, it would have been really horrible if UH made the NCAA’s and they found out that there was a major infraction. Then UH would be penalized and the happiness of UH fans would turn to gloom.
    If AD and UH self reported, and AD having experience at Ohio St. with their past problems, maybe he knows either good or something that will end UH career(s) for some people.
    This could not be ill timed. Brandyn, been with Gib for four years, only know of good things about him, his family and the BB programs he was with.
    Brian, and UH fans, I really hope that it is NOT a major infraction, possibly minor things. However, Brian keep us posted. Saw you on Leahy and Leahy, when subject was broached, you looked genuinely concerned, makes me nervous too. Hope for the best for Brandy and UH MBB. What else could go wrong., Hopefully not too much. The guys played their heart out and the returnees and new recruits, RS’s are really looking , as well as publicly stated by Ben Jay, the 2014-15 season!

  9. poorboy March 19, 2014 9:44 pm

    Sorry, edit my above comments. Hope the best for BRANDYN , sorry for typo, Akana, great young coach. Hope that he has the best backing in town and the support of his program, which I believe he does.

  10. poorboy March 19, 2014 9:47 pm

    And Brian one more thing, I have no idea what it is, the NCAA concern,… Just hope the best. Brandyn Akana, stand up guy, wish the best for he and his family, and UH MBB program!

  11. man eating apple March 20, 2014 7:55 am

    Brandyn Akana vs the NCAA? I’m on Brandyn’s side. Kiss the NCAA hypocrites goodbye. “Players are amateurs and can’t take money, but coaches and sports administrators make millions”. Can’t wait to see the banhammer UH gets for a paperwork error. Should have molested kids instead. Hope UH resorts to the horseplay defense.

  12. poorboy March 20, 2014 8:18 am

    How many possible scholarships does Gib still have to offer for 2014-2015 season? Know they are looking for good Big and good athlete available. Is it 2 or 3?

    Related, and maybe a key situation-The NCAA Investigation. Do you think it will impact recruiting? The recruits, or the other schools recruiting same athletes, letting the prospects know that UH has NCAA Investigation going on. That would really hurt.

    Sincerely hope the personnel matter with Brandyn, whatever it might be, is not major, and can be resolved soon. Thanks Brian in advance!

  13. man eating apple March 20, 2014 9:18 am

    Will it affect recruiting? Horseplay U is lined up for the #6 football class in 2015, and was #24 in 2014. Hope UH has the same affect.

  14. man eating apple March 20, 2014 9:20 am

    You heard about the paperwork errors they do to you at UH?

  15. poorboy March 20, 2014 11:06 am

    Reading posts of others, This NCAA investigation, situation with, his take on priority of UH athletics, Tom Apple, man eating apple insight, maybe more or less is on the table with regards to result of investigation.

    How much does the University have vested interest in maintaining DI sports?Are the powers that be, that interested in keeping All of the Athletic programs afloat? Or is UH just an academic, a great research and grant funded institution? As man eating apple alluded to, paperwork errors, can cause program, UH MBB , or FB, VB to be here or not in a couple of years?

    Ever since UH became a full fledged NCAA DI athletic program, always something to mar some teams respectable athletic achievements.

    I hope the NCAA investigators, do what they do, UH if any, receives minimal damage, or sanctions if any, and UH MBB and DI Athletics gets back to what they do, win games and win championships.
    Enough pilikia already. Whatever it is, hope UH MBB program and others comes out okay, and UH just moves on and uprwards.

  16. poorboy March 20, 2014 11:43 am

    Apologies to man eating apple post about paper work and UH handling of. errors etc, possible affecting All of UH Athletics.

    I was alluding to post by JFByers, interesting, post that you made. If UH supports athletics, or their is a movement to eventually undo the Athletic Program. I think with proper oversight, doing things effectively and timely, UH can manage the academic side, which is primarily why we have the institution. And secondly, the Athletics side, which Ben Jay has a huge challenge on getting dept. into the black.

    Once again, for a lot of UH fans, and those interested in providing the best higher learning for the students, this UH MBB investigation will be over and done with in a short time. Whatever the findings, minimal, if any damage, and UH academic and athletic side keep on getting better.
    Now, the waiting game.
    Apologize man eating apple, I was referring to JFByers interesting and insightful comments.

  17. Brian McInnis March 22, 2014 10:43 am

    Right now my understanding is there are three scholarships available for next season to award to either new players or returning walk-ons.

    The 10 scholarships spoken for right now for 2014-15 are: Keith Shamburger, Garrett Nevels, Brandon Jawato, Quincy Smith, Negus Webster-Chan, Stefan Jovanovic, Michael Thomas, Isaac Fotu, Stefan Jankovic and Isaac Fleming.
    That leaves three.

  18. poorboy March 22, 2014 1:11 pm


    You answer our inquires in such a timely manner! Thank you so very much for the scholarship count for next season so far.
    So , that is what some of us thought, 3 available for next season. This recruiting April-May, until even summer, key.

    Mahalo again Brian. Keep us informed on latest on Brandyn Akana, and NCAA investigation. Hoping for the best for UH athletics and MBB program!

  19. poorboy March 22, 2014 1:19 pm

    Also, would be nice too, that a deserving walkon returnee earns a scholarship , if he is taking care of business on the court, progressing and especially academically.

    So it could be maybe, 2 to offer to a Big or athletic SF/SG/combo. Recruiting, is so huge, the right fit , high character guys. For example, possibly,Isaac Fleming coming from very far away, 3 star athlete and discplined at the Military Prep school, nice fit, combo guard could help shore up the guard rotation.

    Even Nikola Filipovich, who has that Dawg in him in practices, with scout, fearless PG. That is the kind of guards UH needs. Heady , can defend, and willing to score, run team.

  20. K-Bay March 23, 2014 2:08 am

    Maybe Aaron Valdés has Earned a Scholarship … maybe The Valdés ʻOhana are Contributing to The Program similar to The Filipovich ʻOhana, Enos´, Harpers, Hackmans and Harvilles, covering their own way and assisting the program in building its numbers and depth while they build their own skillsets, resume´s and earn their valued degrees…

    Brian: Look Forward to the Updates of Scholarships Awarded (maybe at The Banquet?);
    As Well As, New Talent Incoming to Help Build to ‘The Real NEXT LEVEL’…
    Some of Us Think or Can Foresee that This Program may be ‘On the Verge of Something Special in Hawai’i
    Basketball Evolution…

  21. poorboy March 28, 2014 11:09 pm

    Brian :
    Roderick Bobbitt who graduated HS 2011, went to Indian Hills two times, freshman that committed again to Indian Hills past season. Now going to visit Hawaii?

    Roderick Bobbitt taking visit to Hawaii April 11? I thought Gib was going after a Big?
    Brian, maybe Gib needs a bigger guard at point or combo. Guy can finish at the rim and spot up for 3 pointer. Defend.
    Oh well, we shall see. What is your take Brian, is Gib trying to shore up the guard rotation, get bigger at point?

  22. Brian McInnis April 2, 2014 5:55 pm

    UH is definitely looking for another true big man, but with three scholarships available an addition to guard depth is possible as well.

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