Saturday, March 26, 2011

2011 Filoil Flying V Pre-Season Premier Cup Schedule (March 25, 2011)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

UP's Foreign Woes

Fidel Magonon III, the PBA's official statistician sank any hope of UP becoming even remotely competitive next season, by revealing the newest shake-up at State U.

Alinko Mbah was slated to become eligible this upcoming Season 74 with the role of replacing Magi Sison's production at the Center spot. With his EDITED: likely departure, and given how Joe Etame and Nchotu Njei have to sit out next year for residency purposes, that means the Fighting Maroons will have to fight with guys like Mark Juruena, Martin Pascual, and new recruit Paolo Romero in the middle.

Without any other recruits who can play right way, most likely UP will be the shortest team in the UAAP, making it even harder for them to notch that elusive "W".

EDITED: UP insider Mateen Cleaves on GameFace and Kim on have come out and said that Alinko is still a Maroon, with Kim saying that the news came straight from Ricky Dandan. With that in mind, the entire issue is an interesting one to follow. When line-ups for the Filoil Flying V Premiere Cup come out, one's eyes might want to check out if a) Etame and Njei are on the line-up and b) Alinko is as well.

Fair is Fair

If you've been following my blog, you know that I've taken to posting typos from the various UAAP-related articles found in cyberspace. It's all in good fun and I'm not attacking anyone. It's just the reality of publishing is such that many people take press releases as gospel, and with all sorts of "beats" that a writer is assigned to cover, it's easy for someone who is unfamiliar with the UAAP being understandably confused when he's tasked to cover the PBA-DL, or the FilOil Tournament.

In the interest of being fair though, I'm not above posting my own mistakes, which you'll see below:

So, the background is, I've been doing articles for and my latest piece, about the Coaches Fellowship for the FilOil Tournament last night, came out with a typo, that my editor and I missed.


Hopefully by the time you're reading this, the fix would have been put in already.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Updated FilOil Flying V Premiere Cup 2011 Schedule

Updated as of March 18, 2011. Still a slight chance that some adjustments will be made, but this is more accurate than the previous one. Also, Filoil rosters are due next week.

Jeric Teng, We Hardly Knew You

Despite winning Season 72's Rookie of the Year award and leading his squad in scoring last year, the Philippine Star still has Jeric Teng listed as a rookie in their preview for the Filoil Flying V Premier Cup. Whoops.

EDIT: Uh oh, looks like the Philippine Daily Inquirer has Jeric Teng as a rookie as well. Smells like a press release error! 

EDIT 2: The Manila Bulletin got their's in late, apparently, but still with the same error:

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fr. Martin Cup Final Four Scouting

NU Bulldogs (def. by JRU, 69-71)
  • The first quarter show of Bobby Ray Parks was truly impressive. Parks scored using a variety of moves, showing off the full repertoire and earning a lot of "oooh's" from the crowd.
  • Early on, the Bulldogs ran a lot, even off made shots. 
  • The Bulldogs countered the JRU full-court man to man press by running the ballhandler's man off Mbe or another big man screens near the halfcourt line. Unfortunately this resulted in illegal screen calls twice, as the screener usually kept clenched fists across his chest. The first time it happened, Raycon Kabigting was sent sprawling to the ground, clearly shaken.
  • I had big issues with the way NU head coach Eric Altamirano used Parks. He played him the entire first quarter, and didn't pull him until the 5:28 mark of the second, when NU's 10-point lead had dwindled to just 6. With him out, the Bulldogs hit a huge scoring drought, and their lead disappeared completely, forcing NU to sub him back in at 3:34. They would go on to score just 1 more field goal in that quarter. From that point on, with his energy clearly sapped, he would just make two more field goals. 
  • Beyond Parks and Mbe, the Bulldogs didn't have any other real big man in their 12-man roster, forcing them use Glenn Khobuntin a lot at the four. While he was their second leading scorer, he made a lot of errors, including a missed rotation in the dying seconds of the game, when the Bulldogs were fouling to keep them in the game. 
  • Emmanuel Mbe got into foul trouble in the first half and it clearly limited his production (scoring 4 in the first 3 quarters, and 6 in the fourth). That said, the Bulldogs rarely posted him up, despite the fact that JRU was going small nearly the entire game. 
  • Some NU fans sitting next to me were muttering about Altamirano's rotation, wondering why Kyle Neypes, Cedric Labing-isa, and Mon Celiz didn't get more touches. Celiz, in particular, could have gotten some burn late in the game when they needed triples to break the JRU zone. 
  • In fact, that might be the biggest key to defeating the NU Bulldogs, a very effective zone. In the fourth quarter, NU went 0 for 4 from beyond the arc, and the quick rotations forced turnovers. 
  • Which makes you wonder why the heck they aren't doing more to secure the services of Ael Banal.
AdU Falcons (def. by SBC, 72-80)
  • Although the Falcons managed an 8-6 lead early on, for most of the game, they were exerting a ton of energy just trying to keep it close. In the end, despite the fact that SBC had just played the day before in the PBA-DL, it was the Falcons that ran out of gas. 
  • Austin Manyara still struggles to do anything productive in the post, and the difference was magnified, given that he was going up against Sudan Daniel and Beda's new import Ola Adeogun. The two red shirts combined for 27 points, while Daniel had just a measly 5. 
  • In fact, the entire Adamson team struggled, clearly intimidated by Beda's size. The Falcons rarely took the ball inside, relying on outside jumpers, and aside from Janus Lozada's third quarter burst, none of the other perimeter shooters were finding their mark. Jerick Canada and Lester Alvarez took turns bombing away from beyond the arc, and the result was largely that, a bomb. 
  • Another aspect of the Falcons team that was missing was their tight defense. They led the UAAP with 7.2 steals a game last season, which led to easy transition baskets, but despite the fact that Beda was going point guard by committee, the Falcons couldn't make any headway there. 
  • To be fair though, Adamson coach Leo Austria barely made use of Alex Nuyles, opting instead to see what some of the younger players could do. All of Nuyles' 6 came in the second quarter
  • After two seasons of waiting, Adamson was forced to pull the plug on the King Importante issue, allowing the guard to go off and play in the PBA-DL. Importante was at the heart of PCU violations and his eligibility in the UAAP has been questioned multiple times.
Other teams
  • UP is supposedly going after JRU's Joe Etame, who watched the game in civilian clothes. If he sits out this upcoming season, he'd have one more year of eligibility left. No word on whether or not his fellow Cameroonian, Nchotu Njei will go with him.
  • Some buzz about UE acquiring San Beda's Von Chavez and Chris Javier

And oh yes, shameless plug, I wrote the recap of the Final Four for, so I would appreciate it if you head over there and check it out.
So, that happened.

And then this happened.

Understandably though, UST fans are still pessimistic about the whole thing, and probably will be until the season starts and Ferrer gets announced as a Growling Tiger. That said, it would probably take something catastrophic for Ferrer to suddenly pull up stakes and migrate to another uni. If it does somehow happen though, that might spell the end for this iteration of the UST basketball program.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Summer League Bullets

  • In order to accommodate the teams that will have a significant number of their players moonlighting in the PBA-DL, the FilOil Flying V Preseason Tournament organizers have allowed schools to submit 20 man rosters for the entirety of the tournament, though only 16 players can be active during a game.

Friday, March 11, 2011

2011 FilOil Pre-season Premier Cup Schedule

Schedule comes courtesy of Bleachers Brew and is still subject to revision. Under the cut: the complete schedule for the UAAP squads, and a team by team breakdown, if you only care about your alma mater!

Active UAAP Players in the PBA-DL

A few reminders:

  • According to UAAP rules, players are allowed in minor leagues like the PBL or the PBA-DL only if they've played at least 2 seasons for their school's Team A. 
  • Playing in a minor league like the PBL or the PBA-DL first, before going to the UAAP is disallowed OR it may result in a loss of eligibility years in certain situations (ex. player was a member of a minor league team while in the NCAA)
  • By contrast, the NCAA has basically said "you can all play if you want", forgoing their version of the first rule
There are four teams currently UAAP-affiliated. Players in bold and underline are currently members of their home university's Team A.

Freego Jeans
Affiliate: Adamson Falcons
Coach: Leo Austria
Players: Mike Galinato, Janus Lozada, Alex Nuyles, Jan Colina, Jerick CaƱada, Jeff Morillo, Roider Cabrera, Kirk del Rosario, Eric Camson, Jayve Ferreira, Jeff Olalia, Jemuel Namucatcat, Lester Alvarez

Max Bond Super Glue Sumos
Affiliate: UST Growling Tigers
Coach: Pido Jarencio
Players: Jun Cabatu Jr., Roel Hugnatan, Jeric Fortuna, Carmelo Afuang, Clark Bautista, Rudy Lingganay, Chris Camus, Mark Benitez, Jeric Teng, Japs Cuan, Reil Cervantes, Aljon Mariano, Lei Mar Navarro, Terry Amir

Cobra Energy Drink
Affiliate: UE Red Warriors (sorta, kinda)
Coach: Lawrence Chongson
Players: Arthur Reyes, Joseph Rabaya, Kinsman Frando, Mervin Baloran, Kokoy Hermosisma, Jethro Mendoza, Paul Sanga, Ryan Raypon, John Foronda, Jeymo Eguilos, Ken Acibar, Paul Lee, Toto Bandaying

Junior Powerade Tigers
Affiliate: UP Fighting Maroons
Coach: Ricky Dandan
John Smith, Mark Anthony Jeffries, Mike Gamboa, James Martinez, Brian Ilad, Miggy Maniego, Magi Sison, Alvin Padilla, Moriah Gingerich, Carlo Gomez, Mark Juruena, Julius Wong

Nelson Beltran Takes Back His "Ex Eagle Ryan Buenafe" Comment

After inducing a heart attack on Ateneans all over, and impromptu celebrations from students from the other 7 schools of the UAAP, Philippine Star writer Nelson Beltran has gone back on his controversial statement from his article yesterday.

In a follow-up piece in today's paper, Beltran quotes Ateneo team manager Paolo Trillo, who says:
We’ve talked to Ryan the other day (Tuesday). We didn’t give him the permission to play in the D-League as we want him to concentrate with his academics
Traditionally, Ateneo De Manila University, under Coach Norman Black, has discouraged active players from playing in minor league tournaments, unless it's as a complete team.

To be honest though, it wasn't Buenafe playing for a PBA-DL team that shocked fans, but the fact that Beltran called him an "Ex Eagle". That statement came completely out of nowhere, given that Buenafe was eligible to play in the Developmental League, having been a member of Team A of Ateneo for more than two seasons. Although there have been rumors that Buenafe would be academically ineligible to play in Season 74, such rumors cannot be believed in, given the fact that grades for the second semester have not yet been released yet.

Buenafe famously promised the Ateneo community four more championships after the team won the title in Season 71. He has two more years of eligibility left.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Whoops, Chris Javier is NOT Going to UST

It all started with this box score, from a recent MBL game:

The typical reaction to it was, "Hmm, Jeric Teng...Karim, Kevin Ferrer really is with UST now...Camus...CHRIS JAVIER???"

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Forum Crawl: 03/08/11

A look at various, as of the moment, unconfirmed bits of information, floating around the different hoops forums. If an ITEM! is marked in red, take that item with a grain of salt, or better yet, a lot of salt. 

ITEM! Ivan Ludovice, the seldom-used rookie point guard for the NU Bulldogs, has opted to return to his home school of San Beda, after a fruitless rookie year in the UAAP. He'll have to sit out a year, but come 2012, he's expected to be Baser Amer's back-up. It's no big loss for the Bulldogs though. Joseph Terso will be expected to land the starters' job, Cedric Labing-isa will probably be the main back-up, and Ray Ray Parks can handle the rock as well.

ITEM! 6'2" combo guard prospect Michael Pate is expected to land with the De La Salle Green Archers, according to posts on Archer Pride (middle, in the picture). Given DLSU's crowded backcourt and his relative lack of polish though, he might be Team-B bound for a season or two. Also in that picture, on the left, Louie Vigil, who is expected to finally graduate high school and enroll in La Salle.

ITEM! UST has Jeric Fortuna and Robin Tan to man the point guard spot for the Growling Tigers next season, but they're not content yet. They're also slated to add Jamil Sheriff, a 6'1" 5'9" Fil-Canadian point guard that will sort of give height at that position (the former two players are only about 5'6" each). Check out the video below to see how Sheriff looks like:

"Young ace leads Blackwater" - Philippine Star

As previously mentioned, Joshua Saret has left the UP Fighting Maroons for the PBA-DL Blackwater Elite. He's featured in today's Philippine Star, but if you were going by the article alone, you'd probably get the feeling that this kid never donned a maroon jersey.

Whether or not that's a good thing would depend on how you felt about his abrupt stint with UP, or if you're okay with high school stars opting out of college to get paid.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The PBA-DL Claims Joshua Saret

With a 17 year old age minimum, it has been said that the PBA-DL might entice less academically enthused high school stars into skipping the collegiate leagues altogether and begin earning a living professionally. Such a system would also be advantageous for players who come from poor backgrounds and who really, really need the money for one reason or another. Thus, it was only a matter of time before someone would decide to take that route.

Apparently, that time has come.

Former JRU Light Bomber and UP Maroon Joshua Saret has opted to give up his UAAP eligibility and play exclusively for the PBA-DL. Saret, who is best-known for scoring 83 points in the NCAA Jrs. division, has signed with the Blackwater team, according to an article in today's Philippine Star.

Under UAAP rules, a player must play two seasons under Team A for a university before being allowed to play in minor leagues. Failure to do so renders you ineligible to play for any university in the UAAP. 

There is still an outside chance that Saret can still play for an NCAA team. Under NCAA rules, a player must only establish a single year's residency to play in a minor league.

Will other players follow Saret's lead? It will certainly be something to keep tabs on in the future.

S73 Autopsy: UE Red Warriors

Outgoing Players
- Paul Lee (14.4 points, 6.7 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 2 steals)
- Ezer Rosopa (3.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.3 blocks)
- James Martinez (12.9 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.4 steals)
- Raphy Reyes (7.4 points, 2.1 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.5 steals)
- Garrick Ayala, dropped from the team (2 points, 3 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 0.6 blocks)
- Sam Razon, possibly out for the season to rehab from his ACL injury though he is back with the team (2.8 points, 3.3 rebounds, 0.8 blocks)

Win/Loss Records
- Season 73: 6-8 (6th)
- Season 72: 10-4 (3rd, lost in the Finals to Ateneo De Manila University)
- Season 71: 9-5 (4th, lost in the Final Four to Ateneo De Manila University)

Key Stats
- Last in the league in opponents' total rebounds allowed (44/game), offensive rebounds allowed (15.43/game) and opponents' defensive rebounds allowed (28.57/game)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy News for UST Fans

A belated happy 400th birthday to all of my UST readers out there. I come bearing 4 gifts, in honor of your 400th birthday, which might get you guys excited. Although as always, rumors (as you will undoubtedly see) have a way of changing at bad times so the following are true, right now, but Lord knows might not be by the time the FilOil Preseason tournament kicks off.

1) I'm backing off my previous post that said that Kevin Ferrer was ADMU-bound, for the simple reason that things have changed. As mentioned in my previous post, a UST-insider recently broke the word to people at the Blue Eagles Nest that Ferrer would be staying at home. It's the sort of thing that either inspires or is backed up by forum posts of unknown legitimacy, but let's just say that a betting man would put money on him staying...for now. 

2) Robin Tan, a Team B call-up who went to Xavier School (the same school that gave you Jeric Teng), looks to be a more than capable point guard who could shift Jeric Fortuna to his more natural "2" position. "Shoo-in" is how the above UST-insider described him and a recent performance versus Letran got him rave reviews.

3) Karim Abdul. No, really, Karim Abdul. That's the name of UST's African player, and well, he could possibly the best of the lot. The reason? Like his namesake, he's got skills, including a good post repertoire, a jump shot, and hops. Perhaps finally, your Jervy Cruz replacement is here!

4) A new assistant coach for defense!

Based on all of the above, it's conceivable that UST will rise above their 7th place finish from S73, and have an outside shot at making the Final Four...hey, the Tigers can dream right?