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Gary’s Hoop Scoops: Dec. 7

Well, here we are. Funny how the UH basketball season always goes by so quick. Now I know Big West play hasn’t started yet, but…. it doesn’t seem that long ago that the excitement was here as the ‘Bows started the season on November 6th. And here we are, as the “real” season starts this week. Because when it comes down to it, what happens over the next 17-19 games determines whether UH will be in the postseason or not.

These past 14 games, in a way, don’t mean anything. And I know they do, but only to a certain extent. The Big West as we all should know, is a one bid league. In other words, it’s only the team that wins 3 games in Anaheim in March that will play in the NCAA Tournament. So these are the games that matter the most.

I really feel that not only is the conference up for grabs, but UH can be the team to win and get to The NCAAs again. They still have to improve in certain areas, but I feel really confident that they can do it.

I still feel that we have the best back court in the league, Drew Buggs leads the conference in assists with 5.7 a game. Steady Eddie is the second leading scorer at 17 points a game. Zigmars Raimo is the leading rebounder in the BW at  7.5 a game. Samuta Avea, with his Samjams, also is averaging just under 13 points a game.  As I’ve been saying, the big key is the center spot, the 5 position. I like Bernardo Da Silva at the 5, with Dawson Carper off the bench, but now the tests are coming.

Fullerton, our opening opponent for the 2nd straight year, returns a strong power forward in Jackson Rowe. Irvine on Saturday night features a 7’1″ center, Tommy Rutherford. BTW, haven’t these two been around for 8-9 years?  Somewhere, Timmy Chang is jealous. Most of you should get that line…

On the 4 game home stand and coming up, two first team All Big West bugs are coming down. Lamine Diane of CSUN, was the leading scorer and rebounder in the BW last year as a freshman. For UCSB, their sophomore star is back, Amadou Sow. If De Silva, Zigs, and Carper can keep those bigs in check, the sky’s the limit. It is a lot to ask for, let’s see how it plays out each week. Enjoy the journey in the ‘Quest to win the West’.  I’m getting good at this rhyming thing.

By Gary Dickman

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