Boise State Salute to Hawai'i Basketball

Most people know about the great football and volleyball program at Hawai'i. The school has also enjoyed great success in basketball over the years, as we detail in this tribute.

(Editor's Note:  This is part of a continuing series of tributes to WAC schools as Boise State completes its final season in the conference.  The series is meant to spread good will throughout the conference, highlight the rich heritage at member schools and to thank the WAC members for having Boise State in their conference for the last ten years.)

The University of Hawai'i at Manoa was founded as a land grant college following the terms of the Morrill Act of 1862 and benefits agriculture and mechanical arts in the United States. It is located in Manoa, an urban neighborhood community of Honolulu, approximately three miles east from downtown Honolulu and one mile from Waikiki.

Honolulu is the capital and largest city in Hawai'i. It is one of the most picturesque locations in the United States, or the world for that matter. Honolulu is the only incorporated city in the state, as all other local governments are administered at the county level. The population of Honolulu was 371,657 in the 2000 Census while the City and County population was 909, 863. Honolulu means "sheltered bay" or "place of shelter" in the Hawai'ian language.

The University of Hawai'i is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and is governed by the Hawai'i State Legislature and the Board of Regents, which in turn hires a president to be the school's administrator. In 1912, the school was named the College of Hawai'i and moved to its present beautiful location. A petition was drawn up and presented to the territorial legislature six years later for university status and thus the school became known as the University of Hawai'i in 1920. The College of Arts and Sciences was founded this same year. In 1931, the Territorial Normal and Training School was put under the umbrella of UH that is now the Collge of Education.

Today, UH is the flagship campus of the larger University of Hawai'i system that confers associate, bachelor, master and doctoral degrees through three university campuses, seven community college campuses, an employment training center, three university centers, four education centers and various other facilities across six islands throughout the state. The four Colleges of Arts and Sciences--Arts and Humanities, Languages Literatures and Linguistics, Natural Sciences, and Social Sciences form the main focus of education. The college of agriculture and mechanical arts is now known as the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, one of the few agricultural colleges in the nation focused on tropical research. The William S. Richardson School of Law and the John A. Burns School of Medicine are the only law and medical schools in Hawai'i, respectively. The Center for Hawai'ian Studies provides excellence in studying the Native people of Hawai'i.

Hawai'i offers bachelor degrees in 87 fields, master degrees in 87, doctoral degrees in 53 fields, first professional degrees in three fields, post-baccalaureate degrees in three, 29 undergraduate certification programs and 26 graduate certification programs. Over 20,000 students attend UH at Manoa today. There are about 16 students per instructor, making for an excellent learning environment.

Hawai'i is well respected for programs in Hawai'ian/Pacific Studies, Astronomy, East Asian Languages and Literature, Asian Studies, Comparative Philosophy, Marine Science, Second Language Studies, Botany, Engineering, Geophysics, Mathematics, Medicine, Ethnomusicology, Law and Linguistics. Princeton Review and The National Science Foundation ranks UH Manoa in the top 30 public universities for federal research funding in engineering and science. A new $150-million medical complex in the area of Kaka‘ako opened in the spring of 2005. The facility features a state-of-the-art biomedical research and education center that attracts significant federal funding and private sector investment in biotechnology research and development. The Carnegie Foundation classifies UH Manoa as an RU/VH (very high research activity) level research university.

The university's marine science program benefits from world-renowned marine laboratories located nearby. UH's graduate programs are ranked 2nd in the nation in Oceanography, 4th in Marine Science, 7th in Geophysics and 8th in Epidemiology by The Academic Analytics. Hawai'i's Teacher Education program is ranked 6th by The Academic Analytics. The Medical School of the University of Hawai'i is ranked 12th in the nation for geriatrics.

U.S. News and World Report places the International Business program 21st and the overall Shidler College of Business ranks among the top 20 undergraduate business schools nationwide. The School of Law ranks in the top 20 for environmental law, diversity and low student/faculty ratio in U.S. News and World Report's "America's Best Graduate Schools 2008". The college is in the top 40 for first-time bar passage rate. UH-Manoa is also third in "Best Environment for Minority Students" and fifth for "Most Diverse Faculty". The magazine ranks the Library and Information Science program, school library media specialization, among the top 10 in the nation.

Hawai'i also has two interesting off-campus facilities. The Waikiki Aquarium, founded in 1904, is the third oldest public aquarium in the United States. It has been part of the University of Hawai'i since 1919 and is located next to a living reef on the famous Waikiki shoreline. The Lyon Arboretum is the only tropical arboretum belonging to any University in the nation. It was originally established in 1918 by the Hawai'ian Sugar Planters' Association to demonstrate watershed restoration and test different species of trees for reforestation, as well as collect living plants of economic value. In 1953, The University absorbed the Arboretum, which today has over 15,000 specimens.

Notable Alumni: Neil Abercrombie, United States Representative from Hawai'i 1986-87, 1991-current

Daniel K. Akaka, United States Senator

Jimmie Baker, former NBA forward

Bob Ballard, notable oceanographer

Larry Beil, sportscaster at KGO-TV in San Francisco and former ESPN Sportscenter anchor

Beau Bridges, actor

Glenn Braggs, former Major League Baseball player and 1990 World Series Champion

Colt Brennan, former Hawai'i quarterback, 2nd on NCAA Division I career TD's thrown

Timmy Chang, all-time NCAA passing yardage leader

Gordon Cooper, astronaut of Mercury 9 and Gemini 5

Chuck Crim, former Major League Baseball relief pitcher

Ann Dunham, mother of United States President Barack Obama

Jason Elam, Lou Groza Award-winning kicker

Ben Finney, anthropologist and co-founder of the Polynesian Voyaging Society

Hiram Fong, first member of the United States Senate of Chinese ancestry

Keith Gilbertson, college and NFL football coach

Thomas Gill, former U.S. House of Representatives member and Lieutenant Governor

Tom Henderson, former NBA player

Mazie Hirono, Hawai'i U.S. House of Representatives member

Daniel Inouye, United States Senator

Jason Jones, activist and filmmaker

Lily Kahumoku, former All-American Rainbow Wahine volleyball player

Scott Karl, former Major League Baseball starting pitcher

Brook Mahealan Lee, Miss Universe 1997

Jong-wook Lee, Director-General of the World Health Organization

Major General Robert G.F. Lee

Ashley Lelie, NFL wide receiver

Bette Midler, singer and actress

Abbas Milani, Iranologist and Director of Iranian Studies at Stanford

Patsy Mink, author of Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives

Kenneth P. Moritsugu, Surgeon General of the United States from 2006-2007

Robyn Ah Mow-Santos, USA National Volleyball Team

Barack Obama, Sr., father of U.S. President Barack Obama

Michael Okuda, artist famous for his work on Star Trek

Richard D. Parsons, CEO and Chairman of Time Warner, Inc.

Angela Perez Baraquio, Miss America in 2001

Jason Roberts, 1994 All-American shortstop

Red Rocha, former NBA player and UH basketball coach

Jesse Sapolu, former NFL player for the San Francisco 49'ers

Predrag Savovic, former NBA point guard

Clay Stanley, United States Olympic volleyball player

Kim Willoughby, indoor volleyball player at the 2008 Beijing Olympics

Stan Sakai, Eisner Award-winning creator of the Usagi Yoimbo comic books

Michael Savage, conservative talk-show host

Darin Scruggs, Drum Corps International and Winter Guard

Nainoa Thompson, famed Hawai'ian navigator

John D. Waihee III, former governor of Hawai'i

In 2000, the University of Hawai'i athletic program allowed each sport to select their own team names. Various men's teams are called the Warriors, the Rainbow Warriors or the Rainbows. The women's teams are called the Rainbow Wahine, often shortened to The Rainbows or the ‘Bows. Hawai'i is famous for its football, basketball and volleyball programs. The women's volleyball program captured NCAA national championships in 1982, 1983 and 1987. They consistently are ranked in the top 10 (#5 this year). UH also won the 2004 Intercollegiate Sailing Association National Championship.

In 1971-72, the Hawai'i men's basketball team was 23-5 and made the National Invitation Tournament quarterfinals. The following year, they were 24-3 and earned their first-ever trip to the NCAA's. The "Fabulous Five" as they were known, were 19-0 at home including wins over nationally-ranked Florida State. Riley Wallace is the legendary coach who led Hawai'i to its greatest success. Wallace took over the program in 1989 and coached the team to 334 wins before retiring in 2007. In 2001, the team stormed to upsets of TCU and top-seed Fresno State in the Western Athletic Conference Tournament to reach the final. A bank shot by freshman Carl English in the closing seconds sent the championship game with Tulsa into overtime, enabling Hawai'i to win the title and reach a second NCAA Tournament. The following year, Wallace's team was 27-6 and won both the regular season and WAC Tournament championships. Hawai'i finished the year #25 in the nation with a 16-1 home record. They played well in the NCAA Tournament but fell to Xavier.

Hawai'i also played in the NIT Tournament in 1971, 1974, 1989, 1990, 1997, 1998, 2003 and 2004, making the quarterfinals in 1971, 1974, 1990, 1998 and 2004.

Former Hawai'i Players in NBA:

Guard Jimmie Baker was chosen in the third round of the 1975 NBA Draft by Philadelphia. He played with the Kentucky Colonels of the ABA from 1975-1976.

Forward Tom Barker was selected in the fourth round of the NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks. He played five seasons in the NBA with Atlanta, Houston, Boston and the New York Knicks. Barker's best season was with the Knicks, when he averaged 8.1 points and 6.8 rebounds. In his NBA career, Barker scored 639 points and had 520 rebounds, 75 assists, 43 steals and 52 blocked shots.

Guard Anthony Carter averaged 18.7 points and 6.6 rebounds a game as a junior and 18.2 points and 7.3 rebounds as a senior. Anthony set a school record with 212 assists in the 1997-98 season. He is second all-time with 403 career assists and is fifth with 24 20-point games. He played 12 seasons in the NBA with Miami, San Antonio, Minnesota and Denver, helping his teams make the playoffs in six of those years. He scored 2,876 points and had 1,227 rebounds, 2,283 assists, 573 steals and 106 blocked shots.

Tom Henderson scored 19.8 points and had 4.1 assists per game in 1972-73 for Hawai'i and scored 20.3 points and had 3.2 assists a game as a senior. He was named a Third Team All-American his final year. Henderson averaged 20.0 points and had 3.6 assists a game in his college career and set a school record with five 30-point games. Tom also set a record with 84 steals in the 1972-73 season; he also had 76 as a junior, and also holds the career mark with 160. Tom is ninth all-time in free throws (240) and fourth in free-throw percentage (81.1%).

Henderson was drafted in the first round of the 1974 NBA Draft (7th player overall) by the Atlanta Hawks. He averaged 11.4 points, 2.7 rebounds, 4 assists and 1.3 steals a game in his rookie season with Atlanta, scored 14.2 points and had 4.6 assists in 1975-76 and netted 11.3 points a game with 8.4 assists his third season. Henderson then played for the Washington Bullets through 1979, helped the Bullets win the 1978 NBA Championship. He was fourth in the NBA in assists in 1976 with 598. Henderson played in the NBA playoffs six different seasons. Tom finished his career in Houston from 1979-1983. In ten seasons, Henderson averaged 9.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.2 steals a game. He scored 6,058 points and had 1,494 rebounds, 3,136 assists and 760 steals.

Forward Bob Nash had the two best rebounding seasons in school history. He had 360 as a junior and 361 the following season. As the leader of the team in 1971-72, Nash averaged 11.2 points and 13.7 rebounds a game. He still holds the record for single-season free-throw percentage (87.9%) and ranks sixth in career three-pointers. Nash was drafted in the first round of the 1972 NBA Draft (9th player overall) by the Detroit Pistons. He also played with the San Diego Conquistadors of the ABA and with the Kansas City Kings from 1977-1979. In his professional career, Nash scored 1,103 points and had 538 rebounds, 159 assists, 63 steals and 45 blocked shots.

Nash took over as Head Coach of Hawai'i when Riley Wallace retired in 2007 for two years before being replaced by Gib Arnold.

Guard Trevor Ruffin averaged 12.7 points a game in 1992 for Hawai'i, and then netted 20.8 a game in each of his final two seasons. He had a career-high 42 points against Louisville in 1993 and ripped the nets for 38 against UTEP a few months later. In his great college career, Trevor averaged 18.3 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. Trevor ranks #6 all-time with 23 20-point games. Ruffin played with the Phoenix Suns in 1994 and the Philadelphia 76'ers in 1995 (where he scored 12.8 points and had 4.4 assists per game). In his brief career, Ruffin had 1,011 points and had 155 rebounds, 317 assists and 57 steals.

Predrag Savovic averaged 12.5 points as a sophomore, 17.6 the following year and 20.3 as a senior. He finished his career with a 16.6 average and the school record holder in 3-pointers (178). Savovic is third all-time in free throws (324), fourth in career points (1,414), second in 20-point games (31) and ninth in free throw percentage (79%). In 2001, Savovic helped the team go 17-6 with a berth in the NCAA Tournament. He played with Denver for one season. He scored 83 points, averaging 3.1 per game.

Congratulations on your past success and best of luck to Coach Nash and the Warriors in the future!

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