UAAP Season 77 Preview Part Two (UE, Ateneo)

Gloria Maris, Cubao
July 8, 2014
UAAP Season 77 Preview Part Two (UE, Ateneo)
(Second of a four-part series)

For years, Sportsmaryosep has been covering the collegiate basketball beat including the UAAP. So when the UAAP’s Season 77 was ushered in with the traditional press conference the day before, practically everyone was there to take part in the momentous occassion. There were some new faces and familiar ones. And as usual, sportswriters have swarmed on coaches like bees and rush to get materials for their respective primers since the season is just a few days away. In the middle of the chaos, we felt something is missing. Only until we got to read the blog by our good buddy, The Philippine STAR’s Olmin Leyba, in his byolmins site that we realize that the one everybody will be missing the rest of the UAAP coverage is no other than former Santo Tomas Tigers coach Pido Jarencio. You see, Jarencio has got to be in the Hall of Fame in the Quotable Coach department after blowing away reporters with his, as byolmins put it, “Pido-isms.’ Well it’s another story. What we’re writing now is the forthcoming UAAP cage wars. And myself and Madam Auring have come out with the first installment where we talked about the University of the Philippines and the Adamson Falcons, the Mapua Cardinals of this league. Now comes the second part.
University of the East
Last year’s placing and elims record: Sixth, 7-7
Coach: Derrick Pumaren
Players: Dan Irvin Alberto, Edgar Louie Charcos, Steven Cudal, Ronnie de Leon, Clark Derige, Pedrito Galanza, Daryll Guiang, Ivan Hernandez, Charles Mammie, Gino Juamo-as, Arafat Moustapha, Mark Anthony Olayon, Emil Palma, Roi Sumang, Paul Andrew Varilla, Chris Javier.
Why it would win?
If you have someone like Derrick Pumaren as your coach, UE must be in good hands. He has won championships as a player and a coach. His championships a coach had come from different leagues. Name it, the collegiate, the amateur and semi pro, and he has it. UE also has two of the league’s top imports, Sierra Leone’s Charles Mammie and a debuting Arafat Moustapha of Cameroon. They will split the minutes though since only one gets to play on the court. If the Warriors want a beast underneath, they will release the Kraken, I mean Mammie. If they want a more mobile one who can kill you practically from everywhere, they will unleash Moustapha. And I haven’t even spoken of Roi Sumang, who is undoubtedly the best pointguard in the UAAP right now.
Why it would not?
The bench is questionable as evidenced in thier performance in last summer’s Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup where UE could only rack up three wins and never made the playoff round.
Madam Auring: Minus the pedestrian pre-season effort, the Warriors are geniune title contenders with the right mix of a multi-titled coach, a super Sumang and an out-of-this-world Mammie-Moustapha duo. And did I mention UE is this year’s host?
Ateneo
Last year’s placing and elims record: Fifth, 7-7
Coach: Bo Perasol
Players: John Apacible, Gideon Babilonia, Gwyne Capacio, Clint Doliguez, Juan Nicholas Elorde, Alfonso Gotladera, Michael Jay Javelosa, Isaac Lim, Christopher Newsome, Von Pessumal, Kiefer Ravena, Thirdy Ravena, Arvin Tolentino, Manuel Tolentino, Kris Porter, Antonio Asistio
Why it would?
Kiefer Ravena and Chris Newsome are given. And the Eagles have the biggest rookie coup this season. Ateneo High’s Thirdy Ravena, Kief’s kid brother, Hope Christian School’s John Apacible and Clint Doliguez, Reedley’s Michael Jay Javelosa, Xavier’s Isaac Lim and San Beda’s Arvin Tolentino have all come to Katipunan Road to form a team with the deepest bench.
Why it would not?
Some of these rookies will shine while some will turn out as busts. In an Ateneo lay up where Kiefer and Newsome are the only constants, these neophytes will get the opportunity to either grow up in a hurry or remain an untapped potential. So the danger is there for this young team to implode.
Madam Auring: For unknown reasons, the Eagles are surprsingly ranked low. But I know Kiefer, if healthy, will be back with a vengeance. Newsome will have a breakout season. Although Elorde is expected to start at the point, I will not be surprised if Thirdy will get most of the minutes. The other rookies are scary. Von Pessumal, which has started to come on his own, should improve this year. And it’s not a stretch if you say the Eagles are Final Four shoo-ins. Don’t be shocked too if they made it to the finals where anything is possible.
(To be continued…)
Follow Sportsmaryosep on Twitter: @JoeySVillar

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