UH 'steals' point guard
By Dayton Morinaga
Advertiser Staff Writer
Bobby Miles proved that big-time basketball can be found in East Los Angeles.
Now he wants to prove it for the University of Hawai'i men's basketball team.
Miles fulfilled his commitment to the Rainbow Warriors by signing a national letter of intent yesterday.
The 6-foot-1, 190-pound point guard was a standout at Workman High School in City of Industry, Calif., for the past four seasons. As a senior this past season, he averaged 27.0 points, 14.0 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game.
"I feel really good about Bobby," Hawai'i head coach Gib Arnold said. "He's a strong, solid point guard who I think can really help us. And he's a great kid. His attitude is such that he's always wanting to get better. I was just talking to him and he was going on about his weaknesses and how he wants to improve."
Those familiar with Miles consider him a "steal" late in the recruiting season for the 'Bows.
For starters, Workman High is an unheralded basketball program that did not receive much media attention in California. Miles is the first basketball player from that school to receive an NCAA Division I scholarship.
"East L.A. is known for boxing more than basketball," Arnold said. "The competition there is still improving, so (college) coaches don't really go there."
Second, Miles played just one year of AAU basketball — last spring for Southeast Elite.
"Last year was the first year we put together a team to compete on the elite-level AAU circuit," Southeast Elite coach George Zedan said. "We beat a lot of teams we had no business beating, and that was because of Bobby. I've said this before, and I still believe it — Bobby Miles is one of the most underrated point guards in the country, definitely on the West Coast."
Arnold was an assistant coach at USC a year ago when he first noticed Miles. When Arnold was named Hawai'i head coach last month, he invited Miles to visit the Mānoa campus.
"Once Coach Arnold told me about Hawai'i and how he wanted to build things, I was excited to be a part of it," Miles said.
Zedan described Miles as "a point guard who can do it all."
"One-on-one, he's been able to get to the basket against any other point guard we played," Zedan said. "He's also good at creating for teammates, whether it's for an open 3 or a dunk inside to one of the big men."
Arnold and Zedan agreed that the aspect Miles needs to improve is long-range shooting. However, he will have four seasons to work on it at Hawai'i.
"A guy like Bobby who is willing to work is only going to get better each year," Arnold said.
Zedan added: "Yeah, you can call him Hawai'i's point guard of the future because he will get better. But you can also say he's the point guard of the present because he's pretty good now."
Miles is the sixth recruit to sign with the 'Bows for next season.