Thursday, March 6, 2003
RICHARD WALKER / RWALKER@STARBULLETIN.COM
Hawaii has won 42 games and made one trip to the NCAA Tournament in Mark Campbell's nearly two seasons.
CampbellMark Campbell's career with the Hawaii basketball team has zipped by like one of his no-look passes into the post.
In two years as a Rainbow
point guard, he brought
a pass-first attitude
By Jason Kaneshiro
When the Rainbow point guard arrived on the Manoa campus in the fall of 2001, UH coach Riley Wallace placed the fortunes of the team in his hands. Over two swift seasons, those hands have helped deliver UH 42 wins and a Western Athletic Conference championship.
When: Today, 7 p.m.
Where: Stan Sheriff Center
TV: Live, KFVE
Radio: Live, 1420-AM
Tickets: Lower level, $15/$16; upper level (adult) $11/$12; upper level (student, UH) $7; Super Rooter $8
"Campbell was the point guard that we wanted," Wallace said. "I'd like for him to look for his shot a little more and that would make him the perfect point guard.
"He's heady, he's very unselfish, he orchestrates, he thinks like I think on the court. You wish you had a guy like him for four years."
Campbell is soaking up his final days as a Rainbow Warrior leading up to Saturday's senior night game with UTEP, when he, Lance Takaki and Ryne Holliday make their farewell appearances before the home fans.
"Each day that passes you kind of appreciate everything a little more," Campbell said. "I'm just trying to enjoy it. I feel like I've had a great run."
In two years at UH, Campbell has amassed 306 assists. He leads the WAC this season with 155 entering the final two regular-season games. His value to the Rainbows on the court is also evident in the fact that he leads the team in minutes played and averages nearly 34 minutes per game over his UH career.
Campbell's college run began after leading Mt. Vernon (Wash.) High School to a 91-4 record as a four-year starter. He spent a year as a reserve at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, before transferring to Clackamas Community College in Oregon. In his lone season there, Campbell averaged 14.5 points and 10.2 assists in leading the team to a 28-1 record.
UH assistant coach Jackson Wheeler spotted Campbell playing at a junior college tournament, and convinced him to cross the Pacific.
"I really thank Jackson Wheeler for finding me at that little JUCO tournament," Campbell said. "If he hadn't seen me, I don't know where I'd be."
Campbell joined a UH program that won the WAC Tournament and played in the NCAA tourney the previous season. But the Rainbows lacked a true playmaker who could execute the offense the way Wallace had envisioned and Campbell proved a near-perfect fit for the role.
"We didn't have (a point guard) and we struggled winning some games, so we made sure we found one," Wallace said. "He's been a very, very good addition to the Rainbows. He was what we needed.
"He's a junkie of the game," he added. "He's in college for the right reasons, for the love of this game and to get an education."
Campbell's floor leadership was a vital element in UH's 27-6 campaign last year, as the Rainbows successfully defended their WAC crown and returned to the Big Dance. Wallace said Campbell has developed into an extension of the coach on the court over the past two seasons.
"He knows what I want now," Wallace said. "If he can't hear me, he can go ahead and make the call."
Campbell was elected team captain before this season and his leadership has been tested during the Rainbows' struggles through the conference schedule. They lost their last eight WAC games on the road and enter tonight's game with Boise State at 15-10 overall and 7-9 in the WAC.
"He could have quit, he could have gotten down," Wallace said. "But he's tried to keep everybody up."
Said Campbell: "That's the way any sport is played. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, it's just the way the ball goes. You can't get too high during the highs or too low during the lows. You just have to roll with it."
The only complaint Wallace may have is Campbell's hesitancy to shoot, as he often elects to pass up an open jumper and dish the ball to a teammate. The vexing thing for the UH coaches is that Campbell is actually a pretty accurate shooter when he does put it up. He scored a career-high 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting in a WAC Tournament game against San Jose State last year.
But Campbell has made his mark on the UH program by sharing the ball with his teammates rather than looking for his own points. And sharing the experience of the last two seasons with those teammates is what will shine in his memories of his time at UH.
"I'm going to miss the camaraderie the most, being with the guys," Campbell said. "It was a special team, a fun team to be a part of."
English named Academic All-American: Hawaii guard Carl English was named to the third team of the Verizon Academic All-America University Division team released today.
English carries a 3.28 grade point average in liberal studies and is set to graduate this semester. The only other WAC player on the All-America team is Tulsa's Jason Parker (3.57, management information systems), also a third-team selection.
Florida's Matt Bonner was named the Academic All-American of the Year. Bonner has a 3.98 GPA in business administration.
CONFERENCE ALL GAMES W L Pct. W L Pct. Fresno St. 13 4 .765 20 7 .741 Nevada 11 6 .647 16 11 .593 Tulsa 11 6 .647 18 9 .667 Rice 10 7 .588 18 9 .667 SMU 10 7 .588 15 12 .556 Louisiana Tech 9 8 .529 12 13 .480 Hawaii 7 9 .438 15 10 .600 Boise St. 6 10 .375 12 14 .462 San Jose St. 3 13 .188 6 19 .240 UTEP 3 13 .188 5 21 .192
Tulsa 62, Fresno State 59
Nevada 86, Rice 68
TODAY'S GAMES (ALL TIMES HST)
UTEP at San Jose State, 5 p.m.
Boise State at Hawaii, 7:05 p.m.
BOISE STATE (12-14, 6-10)
Ht. Pts. Reb. Ast. G Bryan Defares (Jr.) 6-3 14.6 4.9 3.0 G C.J. Williams (Sr.) 6-1 8.6 2.4 1.2 G Joe Skiffer (Jr.) 6-3 3.8 2.2 3.1 F Aaron Haynes (Jr.) 6-7 15.1 5.6 1.0 F Jason Ellis (So.) 6-7 9.2 7.6 0.9 HAWAII (15-10, 7-9) Ht. Pts. Reb. Ast. G Mark Campbell (Sr.) 6-4 5.7 3.2 6.2 G Michael Kuebler (Jr.) 6-5 12.0 2.6 2.0 G Carl English (Jr.) 6-5 19.6 5.5 2.3 F Phil Martin (Jr.) 6-8 11.0 5.6 0.6 C Milos Zivanovic (Fr.) 6-11 0.6 0.9 0.1
Notes: English is tied for the WAC scoring lead with SMU's Quinton Ross. Campbell continues to lead the conference in assists. ... Zivanovic got the first start of his career against Rice last Saturday in place of Haim Shimonovich, who is out with a sprained ankle. Nkeruwem Akpan (6.8 ppg, 4.4 rpg) is the Rainbows' top reserve. ... Martin is averaging 15.2 points over the past six games and is coming off a career-high 24-point outing against Rice. ... Haynes was Boise State's sixth-man until being inserted into the starting lineup Feb. 15 at Rice. He scored a career-high 30 points against Louisiana Tech on Saturday. ... Hawaii leads the series 2-1. Boise State defeated the Rainbows 65-63 in overtime on Jan. 4 in Boise. ... Boise State coach Greg Graham is in his first season. Hawaii coach Riley Wallace is in his 16th season (258-214).
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