Friday, January 13, 2012

Jeron Teng commits to DLSU

Image courtesy of Archer Pride's Twitter account

As reported by numerous media outlets earlier today, blue-chipper Jeron Teng of the Xavier School Golden Stallions has committed to DLSU and will be a Green Archer in Season 75. His brother, Jeric, tweeted this morning about having to play against his brother, before saying that Jeron would be an Archer. Later in the afternoon, Jeron then confirmed the news on his own Twitter account, all of which can be seen in a snazzy graphic courtesy of GMA News.

Publicity-wise, this is a big get for La Salle. The Archers have been up and down in recent years, hitting a nadir last season when they went 1-6 in the second round to close out the season at 5-9. As a result, head coach Dindo Pumaren was let go, replaced by Gee Abanilla. Getting Teng was a show of force, a message to the other seven teams that DLSU was not about to go quietly into the night.

But what exactly do they get player-wise? Teng is the biggest name in what is a shallow recruitment year, and a lot of his recognition stems from a 104-point scoring binge that he put up a year ago. Since then, he and the rest of the Stallions won a third straight Tiong Lian title, with Teng getting his second straight MVP plume. That was February 2011. It's a bit surprising really that Teng didn't wait until after this season's Tiong Lian (which starts tomorrow, as a matter of fact), to see if he could boost his stock.

So who is Teng on the court based on last year? Here's what I wrote after his big scoring game:

listed at 6'1", Teng played the small forward spot, though he definitely does not have the shooting touch most people associate with that position. Instead, Teng operates mostly in the paint, hitting 8-foot jumpers reliably, or bullying his way into the lane. This was made easier for him due to the lack of height on the Grace Christian team. Despite double, triple, and even quadruple teams, Teng would usually opt to take shot forced shots, banking on his athleticism to get the rebound and the easy put-back. Teng's 0 assists was indicative of his score-first mentality, though it may just be a statement about his team's composition and depth (or lack of it).

Teng and his teammates run a pressure defense, and they took good advantage of it, forcing 42 turnovers, with 30 steals. That led to more shot opportunities (124 to 84), most of them uncontested, letting Teng pad his stats even more.

I also took a look at Jeron's contemporaries a few days after his big game, other high school stars with big scoring games and how they translated in the collegiate ranks. Let's just say, it's not a nice group to be in.

Jeron's decision to become a Green Archer makes a lot of sense vis a vis his other options. The two other schools that really went after him were NU, which has Bobby Ray Parks, and ADMU, which has Kiefer Ravena. Splitting touches with either of those two would have been tough, while at Taft, down the road if everything goes to plan, he could possibly be the main man for that team.

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