PIDO JARENCIO—who coached University of Santo Tomas (UST) to its last University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) men’s basketball crown in 2006—has one important message to whoever gets the job to handle the gutted Growling Tigers: Love the school.
“I really can’t say much, but whoever it is who would coach the UST, he should truly love the team,” Jarencio told BusinessMirror. “He should be the one who will not compromise the reputation of the team, the players and the university.”
“He should be someone the players would look up to,” he added.
Jarencio was a first-time UAAP and UST coach in 2006 when he won for the Tigers their 18th crown—the most in the league—in a classic finals showdown with Ateneo, then coached by Norman Black. He went on to coach the Tigers for eight seasons before getting a call of duty for Northport (then Harbour Centre) in the Philippine Basketball Association.
Interestingly, what Jarencio achieved as a coach—clinching a UAAP—title, he never achieved as a player with UST.
UST is in dire straits following the resignation of key Tigers in the aftermath of the controversial Sorsogon City bubble conducted by the also resigned Head Coach Aldin Ayo.
UST is currently searching for Ayo’s replacement and at the same time potential sanctions from the government and the UAAP for the Sorsogon City bubble.
Jarencio, meanwhile, said that as a PBA coach with NorthPort, everyone in the league has to sacrifice for the season to resume with the Philippine Cup on October 9 inside the Clark bubble.
“We really have to sacrifice for the league because this is what we want,” he said. “We want to give our supporters [fans] good games and we want them to stay calm amid the pandemic. So we have to sacrifice a bit.”
Everyone involved in the PBA’s resumption will be strictly confined inside the Clark bubble—meaning unauthorized individuals will not be allowed inside the bubble and those who leave the facility will never be allowed to return.
“It is much better because it is safer for the players and officials to be in one place. I support PBA for that,” he said. “I think it’s about time to start playing, it’s been a while since we last played. I’m sure all the players are excited to play.”