Former assistant basketball
coach named A.D.
by Chris Alcantara, staff writer
In an unexpected move, HPU announced on April
4 its decision to promote quiet, reserved, long-time basketball
assistant coach Russell Dung as Athletic Director and Head
Dung has worked alongside Sellitto at HPU since
1988, but before that Dung played under Sellitto at Maryknoll
High School in Honolulu. Dung would later return to assist
Sellitto with the boys varsity team and coached girls
varsity basketball, from 1972-1982. Their relationship, which
has spanned 30 years, has always been a winning one at that.
While coaching at Maryknoll, the duo brought home two state
championships and at one point went three straight seasons
without a loss.
Since taking over the Sea Warriors, they have
posted an impressive 295-136 record to go along with Hawaiis
only national championship in any sport in 1992-1993.
According to school officials, Dung has signed
one-year contracts for both positions that will go into effect
on July 1. Dung had been immediately considered to fill the
vacant positions left by Sellitto following a strong recommendation
from the former director after his retirement announcement.
He turned out to be the unanimous decision, as HPU did not
interview even a single other candidate for the job.
Over the years Ive learned a lot
from him (Sellitto), said Dung. We see the same
things on the court; we focus on the same mechanics, and hold
the same opinion on basketball matters.
Although Dung said he plans to maintain the integrity of the
program built up by his former mentor, the Honolulu native
has his own plans for the teams future. I will
keep the same basic foundation, but I have a vision of how
I want the game to be played. Now Ive got to work to
get the guys there, just sound and fundamental basketball.
Dung plans to continue working with the existing
staff including one recent addition. Former HPU basketball
player Ben Valle was hired to help out on the bench. Valle
was a Sea Warrior in 1985 on the only team in HPU history
to finish a season ranked No. 1. With the team losing eight
seniors this year, HPUs basketball future also depends
on Dungs ability to bring in new talent. According to
Dung, the team is in great need at the two-guard and the three-guard
positions. Were looking forward to having the
new guys come in here, said Dung. Id like
to try to work them into the system soon and hopefully theyll
I might not scream as much or be as intense
as past coaches here, said Dung. But I feel I
can be just as effective in helping this team win.