Wednesday, 6 July 2011 117 Comments
University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers
2010 Record: 4-10, 7th place
Additions: Karim Abdul, Kevin Ferrer, Ron Javier, Kent Lao, Jaypee Sarcia, Jamil Sheriff, Robin Tan, Louie Vigil
Subtractions: Clark Bautista, Eduardo Daquioag, Fritz Delgado, Kenneth Mamaril, Edcor Marata, Aljon Mariano, Vince Tinte, Jackson Wong
Holdovers: Carmelo Afuang, Eddie Aytona, Chris Camus, Jeric Fortuna, Paolo Pe, Jeric Teng, Aljohn Ungria, Kim Lo
Background: From a Final Four stint in Season 72, then dipped near the cellar in Season 73, can the Growling Tigers come out of and improve their performance in Season 74? Two players – Clark Bautista and Ed Daquioag – that can help them are out this season but the additions have added ceiling, a little bit of depth and athleticism.
Key Changes: Coach Pido Jarencio has finally participated in the preseason. This edition of the Growling Tigers has a decent frontline. Karim Abdul, Kevin Ferrer, Chris Camus, Carmelo Afuang and Paolo Pe have managed to post a 49 rebounding average (3rd of the summer) per game during the preseason which is good sign if UST wants to use its speed combination of Jeric Fortuna, Jeric Teng, with either Ferrer or Camus on the wing, in the open court.
Outlook: Fortuna, Ferrer, and Teng attempted a combined average of 6 3-pointers per game during the preseason. Minus Bautista (28% 3-pt FG % during the preseason), expect that average to remain constant. It will remain as one of UST’s chief staple to improve their campaign in the UAAP this season.
Prognosis: UST’s probable starting five of Fortuna, Teng, Ferrer, Camus and Abdul cannot be taken for granted. If given the opportunity, they can hurt other teams in so many ways. The bench will be put to the test this year, as veteran replacements Afuang and Pe, and rookie Robbie Tan will have to step-up to help sustain the UST’s attack.
De La Salle University Green Archers
2010 Record: 8-6, Final Four, lost to FEU 59-69 in the 1st round
Additions: Ponso Gotladera, LA Revilla, Roldan Sara, Norbert Torres, Arnold Van Opstal
Subtractions: Gab Banal, Nico Elorde, Ferdinand, Aiki Herrera, Joel Tolentino
Holdovers: Yutien Andrada, Simon Atkins, Luigi de la Paz, Joseph Marata, Jovet Mendoza, Papot Paredes, Martin Reyes, Jarelan Tampus, Maui Villanueva, Almond Vosotros, Joshua Webb
Background: Last year, Coach Dindo Pumaren has managed to find ways to get his team to the post-season, maximizing the talents of his young players. This season, this is a rebooted Green Archers team that has gotten bigger and perpetually quicker. Can they make it past the 1st round or be a twice to beat team this year?
Key Changes: Even with their lack of size, the Green Archers led the league in rebounding last season. With a few inches added to their roster, this team is a cinch to duplicate that feat again with improved shooting from the 3-pt. area at 32% during the preseason thus making the Green Archers one of the more complete teams this Season 73.
Outlook: Let’s hope that their trip to Attack Athletics in Chicago with Tim Grover and Korea has been worth it. This team has enough experience to make a huge dent in the post-season. They have a good coach with a great system on their side. Pundits say they’ve been predictable, I say this team is committed. Quickness, length and playing smart basketball is the Green Archers’ calling card.
Prognosis: It’s gonna be close but if they play consistently throughout the season, they might create some upsets. It won’t be easy, but their chances for a finals berth is on the radar.
Projected Team Standings:
1. Ateneo de Manila University
2. Far Eastern University
3. Adamson University
4. De La Salle University
5. National University
6. University of Santo Tomas
7. University of the Philippines
8. University of the East
Ateneo over De La Salle
FEU over Adamson