UAAP Season 80 Preview: Sablan vows different UST Tigers will show up
Coach: Boy Sablan
Last Season: 3-11 (8th Place)
Holdovers: Marvin Lee, Jeepy Faundo
Additions: Steve Akomo, Christian Garcia, Jordan Sta. Ana
Key Losses: Louie Vigil, Jon Sheriff, Renzo Subido, Mario Bonleon
Coach Boy Sablan acknowledges that after last year’s disastrous run, the UAAP Season 80 campaign will be make or break for him in University of Santo Tomas.
But Sablan is willing to take on all comers in his second season at the helm for the Growling Tigers with a squad that he can proudly say is his own.
“I built this team unlike last year’s. When I arrived, I had no choice but to run with whatever I had. This time, I’m in control of everything. We had a longer preparation this time and I believe we’re in a better groove,” said Sablan in Filipino.
Parading a mix of veterans and new recruits, Sablan is confident with the group that is slowly showing signs of maturity after the numerous pocket tournaments it participated in in the run up for this season.
We had a longer time to prepare, not like before that we only had two months of preparation. So now, we’re running a bit better. The system I was trying to instill last year is finally happening. The bottomline is we had a longer preparation,” said Sablan.
With key figures from last season’s campaign gone, the Growling Tigers will lean on veterans Marvin Lee and Jeepy Faundo to carry the fight.
But Sablan believes that UST’s unpredictability makes it dangerous, as he expects several players to step up unlike others who depend largely on only one go-to guy.
“You won’t rely on just one person. Everybody can be depended on. There are no main guys. I’m not particular on one, two, or three players. Now, I have more confidence on my players. I trust what they can do on the court.”
While he’s not willing to make any promises, he guarantees that UST will be better prepared for the challenges that this season brings.
“No promises,” he said. “That the team prepared well and we’ll try do everything we practiced the last eight months during the games. You’ll see the changes in our players. That’s one thing you have to watch out for. You’ll see the difference.”
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