Shoji on the 'Animals'

Caught the last bit of the interview late this afternoon.

He spoke mostly about recruiting and how happy he was with the class, saying they were very athletiic, maybe not great volleyball players but that they had a lot of potential to develop.

said he had a few invited walk-ons coming in that he couldn’t talk about and that he might have one more scholarship available.

He also talked a bit about the RPI and hosting. He felt they had a good shot but that ‘you never know.’ Of course, they need to take care of business the next few weeks.

thought that the Big West was better, might get three teams in if UH doesn’t get the AQ. thought UCSB had to win the league title to get in.

And he said he is always asked how much longer is he staying. He says he tells recruits that you come to Hawaii for the experience, to play in front of the crowds, not to be coached by any one person.

There may have been more but I tuned in late.


  1. Beauston November 18, 2013 6:34 pm

    What does “invited walk on” means? Incoming frosh not getting scholarships but still decided to go to a certain school? Any reason why any coach can’t discuss it publicly?

    Or ist more of a transfer walking on? Which makes more sense to me since the transferring player has to be the one to reach out and unless release has been granted, school/coach can’t do much unless wait for the other party.

  2. Ki November 18, 2013 8:02 pm

    Probably cause coaches CANNOT talk about players unless they sign a letter of intent to play for their school.

  3. setaone November 18, 2013 9:12 pm

    Invited walk ons are players that are asked to come out for the team yet are not offered a scholarship. Shoji can’t talk about them because they haven’t signed a letter of intent and they are not enrolled in school.

  4. Warriorfan November 18, 2013 10:04 pm

    For some reason I thought UH would have two scholarships remaining. Anyway I hope he gets an impact transfer left side hitter for next season.

    I wonder if one of the walk ons is the middle blocker from Millilani.

  5. surfboy November 19, 2013 12:01 am

    I seen a couple of the incoming recruits play most notably Greeley and she is a banger. Not sure what Shoji means by ‘not great volleyball players’?

  6. Warriorfan November 19, 2013 12:24 am

    Greeley is still learning to be an outside hitter, passing and digging probably needs work.

  7. Islandvballer November 19, 2013 2:14 am

    I wonder if the invitee walk on is Sarah Liva from Mililani. Cindy, has there been any mention of her at all?

  8. LC November 19, 2013 6:23 am

    Interesting how his words often echo mine. What was it that I recently said about all projects but at least athletic ?

    I believe Miller said in last article back row types.Gianna Guinasso probably one of them. One or two scholarships left is more interesting,reserved for a possible transfer maybe ?

  9. L.C. November 19, 2013 6:26 am

    All back row types according to Miller

  10. tako November 19, 2013 6:26 am

    4. Thought UH needed two available scholarships for 2015 recruits, Casey and Granato.

  11. LC November 19, 2013 6:30 am

    I know who some are

  12. Cindy Luis November 19, 2013 7:23 am

    3. thanks for getting to that before I did.
    Invited or ‘preferred’ walkon as Shoji called it … someone they invite to walk on, want on the team, don’t have a scholarship for, may down the road but no promises. no NLI.
    as for the scholarships, Shoji said 1. but at another point during the interview he said 1 to 2.

  13. lowtone123 November 19, 2013 7:40 am

    Invited walk-on is asked to join the team without promise of a scholarship but will have a spot on the team. Traditionally, a walk-on would have to earn a spot on the team through workouts.

  14. setaone November 19, 2013 8:33 am

    4. I can’t recall a time an “invited walk-on” for the Wahine wasn’t a DS. Was Caroline Blood invited?

  15. Warrior Dave November 19, 2013 8:41 am

    Cindy, glad you caught Dave’s interview. Especially the part regarding available scholarships. When he said snigger may open up to bring the number to 2, it may me feel that someone may be leaving the team?

    Am I misreading his remark?

  16. Cindy Luis November 19, 2013 8:54 am

    11. no, Blood asked to walk on after softball didn’t work out.
    You might consider Stauber an ‘invited walkon’ Most have been DSs Kayla Kawamura for example.
    12. don’t want to start speculation about that.
    As I said, didn’t catch all of it.

  17. Cubicle1126 November 19, 2013 9:27 am

    maybe someone else will end up on a basketball scollie? huff? which then opens up a vball scollie?

  18. L.C. November 19, 2013 9:28 am

    Warrior Dave, someone possibly leaving was also my first thought also maybe saving one for a transfer but I’m not a scholarship counter myself so I don’t even know how many are left.

  19. LC November 19, 2013 9:31 am

    You never know do you ?

  20. LC November 19, 2013 9:39 am

    I think we are looking at some serious rebuilding. I don’t see great things happening in 2014

  21. vbfan November 19, 2013 10:01 am

    #16 Really Hartong is the only big loss. With Higgins and Kahakai I don’t think there will be much drop off at all at setter and libero.

    If Taylor improves she has the potential to be a dominant player and take Hartong’s place.

    Hawaii had the best recruiting class in the Big West and should be favored to win it next year. Northridge loses almost all of their key players this year and I think will be the bottom half of the conference next year. UCSB also loses a lot. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a transfer coming in next year as well.

  22. connor November 19, 2013 10:38 am

    #17 where can we look to see the various recruiting classes and rankings?

  23. mauna November 19, 2013 10:38 am

    17. vbfan, I agree with you on all points. Higgins will step right in there as a vocal leader, Kahakai may take a few matches to adjust to D1 speed, Taylor will dominate as a six rotation player as LOH1. I see Greeley being an impact freshman hitter, if not a starter at seasons start will be at midseason. The middle positions will be improved, Maglio and Huff may surprise and see significant playing time.

  24. deep blue November 19, 2013 11:15 am

    I wonder how Keani Passi will impact the 2014 team. From the bio description she seems very impressive, tho undersized. Anyone here saw her play before?

  25. Cindy Luis November 19, 2013 12:40 pm

    22 Passi will remind folks of Cubi-Otineru.
    16. don’t see anyone getting bkb scholarship.
    7. have never heard Liva mentioned but then again he can’t talk about walkons.

  26. uhfan November 19, 2013 1:11 pm

  27. Ron November 19, 2013 1:32 pm

    I think we still have a lot to talk about this year but it is fun to speculate about next year. I predict Niki and Greeley on the left. Passi on the Rt. Higgins setting, same two middles, Mendoza as the libero and Kahakai as the defensive specialist. Tai will need to improve to make the line-up. The new middles will need at least a year of training. The following year we will be top 10 again.

  28. HAPAGUY November 19, 2013 2:45 pm

    22. Deep Blue: My daughter played high school and club vball with Ani (Keani Passi) and she was really athletic but really raw. Ani didn’t really start playing organized vball until 10th grade so she is the kind of very athletic player that Dave can mold. She was a softball and basketball player prior to that. Cindy is exactly right: she resembles Aneli in a lot of ways…..not as high a vball IQ as Aneli but more athletic IMHO

  29. LanaiBoy November 19, 2013 5:20 pm

    Re: Keani Passiā€¦.This is the year that proves that a lack of height does not mean a whole lot. Look at San Diego with two outside hitters at 5’9″ tall and Missouri with one of the top freshman outside hitters in the nation in local girl Carly Kan, also at 5’9″ tall. There’s also Cassie Strickland of Washington who is an outside hitter and even shorter at 5’8″ tall. All three schools are in the top ten in the AVCA rankings. I’m sure there are many other examples. Hawaii has a whole slew of great volleyball players, both middles and outside hitters, who were less than 6 feet tall.

  30. Warriorfan November 19, 2013 6:15 pm

    I wish Keani was not redshirted, if anything would have been a better idea to redshirt Tai. Lowest hitting percentage for a UH starter since I can remember. I don’t recall any other starter hitting near the mendoza line all season, she is just not ready.

  31. Cindy Luis November 19, 2013 6:30 pm

    18. I thought the same (about maybe someone transferring out) but when he said. ‘may’ perhaps it hasn’t been decided.
    30. Don’t think Passi was ready to play this season. She may have had to get some academics finished. as for Manu-Olevao … with Croson gone they had no choice but to use her. she would have benefited from a full redshirt year last year, that was burned when Croson was suspended. her big thing is lack of consistency.
    Someone mentioned Guinasso … she may be sand only.

  32. Warrior Dave November 20, 2013 8:37 am

    #31 Cindy,

    I feel Dave may have made a poor decision to burn Tai’s redshirt year last year. I don’t remember the exact number of games Jane was out but did Tai’s play during her absence a major factor in wins? Not a knock against Tai, but I agree with you that a full redshirt year would have helped her now.

  33. Hot November 20, 2013 9:18 am

    13. Probably depends on the number of players on the roster. 2003, they had seven walk-ons who were all “invited” to try out. I remember one of the coaches saying that none of the players were sight unseen. All have either been players they were following or have attended previous camps, and that all were invited try out. They just couldn’t keep them all because there were only 18 spots on the roster at that time. Only three were kept from that group: Teisa Fotu, Katie Carlson, Raeceen Woolford. Two who were cut, Kelly Ong and Jennifer Wells were added to the 2004 spring roster.

  34. Hot November 20, 2013 9:21 am

    14. Aside from Caroline Blood, the other non-DS walk on I can remember was Paige Mitchell, a 6-1 MB from 2009 season. I think it was in 2005 that they had non-DS walk-ons who tried out but didn’t materialize, including a 6-3 middle (Jennifer Lindsey?) and an outside hitter transfer from Vanguard.

  35. Hot November 20, 2013 9:26 am

    32. How could a full redshirt year benefit Olevao? She would have been even more raw than she is now. Getting actual game experience last year was beneficial.

  36. Ron November 20, 2013 10:00 am

    Hot- The answer is that she would have had one more year to develop and contribute. Tai is not a lost cause yet. She seems to be too self- conscious or lacks focus at times. She has the hops and the arm to be a factor with maturity and practice.

  37. setaone November 20, 2013 10:16 am

    Gotta agree with Hot…..Tai would not develop as quickly sitting on the bench. Getting her playing time last year made her a better player to start the season.

  38. Cindy Luis November 20, 2013 10:26 am

    32. no use second-guessing the decision on Manu-Olevao. but it was done out of necessity. They needed another OH last season when Croson didn’t make that first road trip.
    35. Disagree about being raw coming off a redshirt year. She still would have been in all the practices, getting used to the speed of the college game and maybe not have as much pressure to perform right away.
    Agree with Ron about focus and confidence.

  39. Maverick November 20, 2013 10:37 am

    35. Agree with Hot. Practice is no substitute for in-game experience. Olevao would have been less effective this year without the experience from last year. The price paid for dropping the redshirt, as pointed above, is that Oleavo will be in uniform four years rather than five.

  40. LC November 20, 2013 10:44 am

    I stay off of Tai’s case because every time I think I want to criticize she puts up some great numbers I have finally accepted her as inconstant at times but someone who wants to get better.

  41. Warriorfan November 20, 2013 11:43 am

    40. I just hope she can hit over .220 for the rest of the remaining matches, hopefully .250 it would really help UH’s chances if she picks up her game.

  42. Hot November 20, 2013 3:32 pm

    38. I guess I don’t understand how being a redshirt last could have helped her with her role NOW. Last year, even though she didn’t redshirt, she STILL participated in all practices and still had enough time to adjust to the collegiate game. It’s not like she was a starter in every match. I was responding to the original comment that a full redshirt year would have been helpful to her status now to which I disagree. Her actual game experience last year should help her with her role as a starter now. And again, it depends on the needs of the team. They needed her last year, so no redshirt.

  43. jake November 20, 2013 3:43 pm

    42. for what it’s worth agree that a redshirt could not have helped her with her role now.
    believe they understand that she does not belong in the back row and now have her concentrate on offense
    in the front. i believe thats why her numbers are improvingā€¦. if they use her that way, she may become
    more than awesome not worrying about ‘defense’ as much.

  44. Brandon November 22, 2013 11:37 am

    I wonder if passi will get a starting role next year. She hits very hard but I think she needs to work on placement.

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