UP’s Kobe Paras just relishing ‘rare’ fourth chance to play college hoops
MANILA, Philippines—The third time may be a charm but the fourth one was what Kobe Paras dreamt of after he debuted with University of the Philippines in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament.
Paras was instrumental in leading the Fighting Maroons to their 83-82 victory over Adamson University Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena finishing with 20 points, six rebounds, two blocks, and a steal.
UP may be his first college in the Philippines, but the 21-year-old Paras bounced around several schools in the United States before settling down with the Maroons.
“I’m just really blessed I’m given a fourth chance in college basketball and that’s rare,” said Paras. “For a lot of student-athletes, they know how it feels. Some of them know how it feels to try and try and try and not get a chance.”
“Even though this is my plan B, this plan B is everyone’s dream so I’m still grateful for everything.”
After graduating from Middlebrooks Academy wherein he was an honor roll student, Paras committed to attend college at University of California in Los Angeles but withdrew from the NCAA Division I school after failing to meet academic requirements.
The 6-foot-6 wingman then enrolled and played at Creighton where he appeared in 15 games and put up a total of 20 points and 15 rebounds.
Paras’ stay with the Bluejays, however, lasted just one season and he then, committed verbally to play Cal State Northridge but pulled out shortly after Maradors head coach Reggie Theus was fired.
“I’m just thankful for coach Bo (Perasol) and the whole UP community for giving me basically a fourth chance not just in basketball but in life,” said Paras who joined brother Andrei and father Benjie to have played for the Maroons.
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