What’s New in 2005 with the Dinos?

Filed under: — Matt Skinn @ 10:39 pm

Besides the 9 new faces that are on the 2005-2006 version of the Dinos roster, here are a few other things that the Dinos have added to their program for the upcoming season:

1. Dinos Mentoring Program – The Dinos have fully established a mentoring program for all of their players for 2005-2006. Due in a large part to the hard work put in by Assistant Coach Wayne Thomas and his wife Olwen, the Dinos have been able to match up each of the players on the current roster with either a Dino Alum or a proud Dino supporter to help guide the players throughout their University experience. The mentoring program brings about so many positive things: First of all, it helps to keep the connection between Dino players of the past with Dinos of today. Second, it keeps the Dinos basketball program connected to the community of Calgary. Third, it provides each player with a positive outlet in the community with valuable contacts that can benefit the players in the future. Finally, it gives the players a non-biased opinion of life at University and provides them a challenge to succeed at school and in the future after graduation.

2. Habitat for Humanity – The Dinos are lending a helping hand. On Wednesday, September 28, the Dinos are going to dawn workers clothes to build a house in the Calgary community for the local Habitat for Humanity program.

3. Children’s Hospital – With the construction of the new Children’s hospital on the West Campus of the U of C almost complete, the Dinos have already created a connection with the Children’s Hospital of Calgary. On a weekly basis, the players will try to be a shining light for the lives of those children in need, and will help out by reading, and establishing relationships with the children at the hospital.

4. Pre-season Action – The Dinos will be venturing east this year to open up their exhibition play. The Dinos will travel to the East Coast of Canada to take on the University of Cape Breton, Saint Mary’s University, and Acadia University in what looks to be 3 challenging opponents. The Nova Scotia tour begins October 14 in Sydney taking on the 2005 Division Champion Capers.

The Dinos will also be making their way to Ontario to take on Brock University and McMaster University. Two highly tauted teams, and always competitive nationally, the Dinos will play the Badgers on October 21, and march into Hamilton to play the Marauders on October 22.

What an exciting year it is going to be for the Calgary Dinos. Truly a program building great players, but more importantly, great young men!


Pre-season Report

Filed under: — Matt Skinn @ 10:00 pm

Dinos Fans,

The Dinos have just finished their second week of full practice, and we are working hard to bring the pieces together to prepare for pre-season play in mid-October. The team has two scrimmages planned over the next two weeks …

Tuesday, Sept. 27 … Medicine Hat College …Jack Simpson Gym

Following week … Mt. Royal College at UC

Oct. 14-16 Dinos travel to Nova Scotia … at Cape Breton, Acadia, and St. Mary’s

Oct. 21-22 Dinos at Brock and McMaster in Ontario

The Canada West Opener is Oct. 28 and 29 in Calgary against UBC

On Sept. 28 the team will be donning construction gear as they pitch in for ‘Habitat For Humanity’ in helping to build a townhouse in SE Calgary. The team will also soon begin visits to patients at Calgary’s Children’s Hospital.

Another new program initiative is the Dinos Mentorship Group , and we are fortunate to have 16 capable and enthusiastic alumni and supporters who will be working with our players throughout the Fall and Winter.

On the court, the team welcomes 9 new faces, and the newcomers are giving our returnees a good battle for floor time. In the post, Ross Bekkering, 6’8″ from Taber, is very athletic and a force on the glass. Robbie Sihota is gaining confidence every day, and shows some great skills at both ends of the floor. Greg Jobagy has been a pleasant surprise , as he plays with determination and savvy against bigger players.

On the perimeter, we are very pleased with the skills and attitude brought to the team by CIS transfers Cody Darrah ( Alberta ) and Brian Finniss ( Acadia ); they will both be key contributors this season. Jeremy Odland, a tireless worker at the wing comes to the Dinos from
Mt. Royal College, and he is ‘D-ing it up strongly every shift. Adam Ford, who was the Dino Football rookie of the year last season, has shown a rugged and hard-working game, and is making strides to latch on to a playing spot. Tony Dhaliwal, a red-shirt point guard from
Abbotsford, B.C., has displayed a natural talent in running the floor and distributing the ball; we expect big things from him in years to come. Josh Minhas, our other red-shirt guard, has been troubled with a bad back, but he is eager to return to action soon.

Co-captains Chris Wright and Whit Hornsberger lead a solid group of returnees. ‘CW’ is having a great camp thus far, and he is primed to have a big year. Whit returns after an injury -plagued 2004-05, when he was forced to the sidelines and had to petition to get his 5th year
back this season; he is determined to show the scoring touch and passing skills of an all-star candidate.

Sonny Khangura, who red-shirted last season is a 4th year who played B.C. College league ball on the coast for three years; his post presence will be a big benefit to the Dinos inside game. Both Lindsay Thouret (3rd ) and Dalbir Dosanjh (2nd) have been shooting the ball extremely well from the wing, and Dalbir is also showing skill in the post. Josh Feist (4th), with a year of Canada West play under his belt displays more confidence and control at the point, and his speed and slick passing will give us a great offensive weapon.

Unfortunately, Brendan Groat, our outstanding 3rd year post player, is struggling with knee pain, and has been unable to practice consistently. We are hoping a patient therapy regimen will allow Brendan to return to the line-up and regain the form and potential that he has shown in the past two seasons.

By Wayne Thomas


Ready to Roll!

Filed under: — Matt Skinn @ 11:43 am

After a heart breaking loss to the Alberta Golden Bears in last season’s Divisional Playoff, the Dinos have re-amped, re-tooled and refreshed for the upcoming 2005-2006 season. The off-season was highlghted by the re-instatement of star guard Whit Hornsberger, the additions of 9 new faces to the Dinos roster, and the coaching staff travelling to Texas Tech University to visit the immortal Bob Knight.

With stress fractures in both legs, now 6th year senior guard Whit Hornsberger missed all of last season with the injury. Unable to practice and play to his full ability, Whit was forced to sit out after only 2 regular season games. After leading the team to the National Semi-final game just the season before, the Dinos star point guard was issued a medical redshirt season for 2004-2005 and full re-instatement for the duration of the 2005-2006 season. As one of the all-time leading scorers in the history of the school, and as one of the most skilled players in the Canada West conference, the Dinos and their coaching staff are excited to have Whit back on the floor once again.

The off-season also marked the signing of 9 new players to the Dinos roster. With such a significant turnover, the Dinos hosted a July Training Camp in hope of getting all of the new faces familiar with one another before the start of the new season. The signings included blue-chip recruits Ross Bekkering, a 6’8″ Forward out of Taber, AB, and 6’6″ Forward Robbie Sihota out of Calgary, AB (See below for the complete recruiting list).

High School Graduates:

Ross Bekkering, 6’8″ Forward, Taber, AB
Robbie Sihota, 6’6″ Forward, Calgary, AB
Tony Dhaliwal, 6’3″ Point Guard, Abbotsford, BC
Greg Jobagy, 6’6″ Forward, Calgary, AB
Josh Minhas, 6’0″ Forward, Calgary, AB

College/University Transfers:

Brian Finniss, 6’4″ Guard, Acadia University
Jeremy Odland, 6’4″ Guard, Mount Royal College
Cody Darrah, 6’4″ Guard, University of Alberta
Adam Ford, 6’4″ Guard, University of Calgary Football team
Sonny Khangura, 6’7″ Forward, Kwantlen College (Redshirt 2004-2005)

The off-season also marked a trip to Lubbock, Texas for Coach Dan Vanhooren and his coaching staff. Along with Head Assistant Wayne Thomas and Graduate Assistant Matt Skinn, the staff was welcomed by the Red Raider staff at Texas Tech University. Highlights of the trip included watching Bob Knight coached practices, game and video breakdowns with the Red Raider Coaching staff, and a tour of the 16,000 seat SBC Arena which is home to the Red Raider Men’s Basketball team.

The Dinos will continue practice in preparation for their first exhibition game of the season which will take place on October 14, 2005 at the University of Cape Breton. The Dinos continue their east coast tour playing Saint Mary’s on the 15th, and Acadia on the 16th of October. The Dinos exhibition season will also see them playing at Brock, at McMaster, at Texas Christian University, and at Southern Missippi.

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