Varsity-based teams banner PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup field
School-based teams take center stage when the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup tips off in January.
Seven of the 12-team field will be trotting out players from their respective varsity squads, mostly from the NCAA.
This early, Zark’s Burger-Lyceum is emerging as the favorite for the crown with coach Topex Robinson and NCAA MVP CJ Perez in tow.
Not to be outdone is Foundation Cup runner-up Centro Escolar University which will bring back a virtually same core bannered by Congolese big man Rod Ebondo.
Also seeing action this year will be returning school-based teams AMA Online Education, Jose Rizal University, and Batangas-Emilio Aguinaldo College, as well as newcomers Perpetual and Powerball-St. Benilde.
Last season’s semifinalists Tanduay and Marinerong Pilipino are also hoping for another run to the finals.
Completing the field are last year’s cellar-dwellers Wangs Basketball and Gamboa Coffee Mix, and neophyte Mila’s Lechon.
Curiously, defending champion Cignal HD, powerhouse Flying V, and perennial contender Racal Motors have all opted to forego participation in the first conference.
Three of the 12 teams have also secured a tie-up with PBA teams namely JRU with Ginebra, CEU with Rain or Shine, and Powerball with Blackwater.
Interested teams have until Monday, November 27, to submit their letter of intent and pay their entry fees to be eligible for the upcoming conference.
Rookies aching to make the roster will also get their chance as the 2017 PBA D-League Draft is set on December 12 at the PBA Cafe in Metrowalk, Pasig.
AMA, Wangs, and Batangas are all slated to make the first three selections.
The PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup opens festivities on January 18, 2018.