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NCAA opens door to three guest schools

By Cedelf P. Tupas
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:54:00 04/21/2009

Filed Under: Sports Organisations, Basketball

MANILA, Philippines - Three months after they were turned down in their bid to join the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), Arellano University, Angeles University Foundation and Emilio Aguinaldo College are now on the verge of making the roster as guest teams of the country?s oldest collegiate league.

Realizing the need to expand its fan base, the NCAA last week invited the three schools to beef up the seven-school league for its 85th season, which reels off on June 27 at the Araneta Coliseum.

?More teams mean more supporters,? said NCAA president Fr. Mat de Jesus of San Beda. ?To put it simply, the more the merrier.?

Of the three schools, only Arellano has welcomed the invitation, with marketing director Val Cayco saying the school ?will definitely join even if it?s a guest team status.?

Arellano and six other schools, including AUF and EAC, failed to make the grade in February after the league?s policy board failed to come up with the needed two-thirds vote to accept them.

Lyceum was also a candidate to be a guest team but the absence of a high school program, a requirement to join the NCAA, doomed its chances, according to Inquirer sources.

Arellano, AUF and EAC, however, need to cough up at least a P1.5 million entrance fee and a P500,000 bond, NCAA management committee chair Mari Lacson of San Beda said.

They are also required to participate, not just in basketball, but track and field and swimming.

The league has given the three schools up to April 24 to formally accept the invitation, Lacson said.

But De Jesus clarified that joining the league as regular members is an entirely different thing.



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