Dillinger gets ride from UH
By Dayton Morinaga
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Dayton Morinaga
Jared Dillinger now has a good reason not to work so many hours at Hollister in the Ala Moana Center anymore.
Dillinger was awarded a scholarship with the University of Hawai'i men's basketball team this week.
"It's huge," said Dillinger, who paid for his own tuition and books last season as a walk-on with the Rainbow Warriors. "I never expected to get it, but the coaches told me ever since last year that I should just keep working hard, so that's what I did."
The 'Bows had 12 out of a maximum 13 scholarships filled after the letter of intent signing period ended on May 17.
"We held (the last scholarship) open during the summer in case there were any transfers," Hawai'i head coach Riley Wallace said. "There weren't any, so we decided to give it to (Dillinger). But it wasn't like a gift. He earned it."
Dillinger, a 6-foot-5 guard/forward, was a redshirt player last season. He practiced with the 'Bows, but did not suit up for any games.
"He did everything we asked of him in practice last year and he held his own against the other guys," Wallace said.
Dillinger will be a junior this season and will have two seasons of eligibility. He played his first two seasons as a scholarship player at Air Force.
He averaged 2.1 points and 1.3 rebounds per game as a sophomore during the 2004-05 season, but left for personal reasons.
Dillinger played high school basketball at Dakota Ridge High in Littleton, Colo. He is an ethnic mix of Filipino, German and French, and said he has often been mistaken for a "local" since transferring to Hawai'i.
"They all think I'm from here until I start talking," he said.
Dillinger said he and his parents paid around $12,000 for him to attend UH last year.
"That's why the scholarship means so much to me," he said.
To help pay for the expenses, Dillinger worked part-time in sales at Hollister, even during the basketball season. He said he is still working there, but will probably cut back on his hours once basketball practices start in October.
"I still could use the spending money," he said. "But it's nice to have (the scholarship) so I don't have to rely on my parents for so much."
The 13 players on scholarship for the 2006-07 season are returnees Dillinger, Matt Gibson, Bobby Nash, Ahmet Gueye, Matt Lojeski, Dominic Waters, John Wilder and Stephen Verwers, and new recruits Todd Follmer, Todd Lowenthal, Riley Luet-tgerodt, P.J. Owsley and Alex Veit.
Walk-on player Jack Miller is also expected to return.
GUEYE'S KNEE STILL WORKING INTO SHAPE
Ahmet Gueye, the starting center for most of last season, is continuing to rehabilitate his right knee.
Gueye tore the anterior cruciate ligament and the medial collateral ligament in his right knee during a practice in March. He missed the final two games of the 2005-06 season, and the 'Bows lost both games.
"I don't know if he'll be ready to work out anytime soon, but he should be ready to be with us when the season starts," Wallace said.
The 6-7 Gueye averaged 12.2 points and a team-high 7.7 rebounds per game last season. He also led the team with 65 blocked shots and was named to the Western Athletic Conference All-Defensive Team.
Former Hawai'i standout Julian Sensley is expected to get playing time for Germany in the FIBA World Championships, which begins this weekend in Japan. Germany will open the tournament against Japan on Saturday. Sensley was allowed to play for Germany because his mother, Susanne Karsten, has German citizenship.
Wallace said he would like to hire a director of basketball operations by next week. The position became vacant this month when Gabe Watson accepted a position as head basketball coach and athletic director at Life Pacific College (Calif.). The director of basketball operations assists the coaching staff with various administrative duties.
Reach Dayton Morinaga at email@example.com.