UAAP commissioner junks UP appeal on Bo Perasol 3-game ban
MANILA, Philippines–UAAP Season 82 basketball commissioner Jensen Ilagan on Friday stood firm on his decision to hand an additional two-game ban on top of the automatic one-game suspension slapped on University of the Philippines coach Bo Perasol, junking a motion for reconsideration filed by UP.
The UAAP has yet to release an official statement on Ilagan’s decision as of posting time, but the Fighting Maroons’ legal team, led by lawyer Patricia Galang, has described the denial as “terribly misguided and based on a poor understanding of the tournament rules, a faulty appreciation of the facts and a blatant disregard for precedent.”
In a statement, Galang said they plan to elevate the matter to the UAAP Board of Trustees made up of university presidents of member-schools, while considering “other legal options.”
Perasol will miss the game against Far Eastern University on Sunday following his ejection for his outburst in the 63-89 loss to Ateneo in the final game of the first round of eliminations last Sunday.
The additional two-game ban will cover the games against University of the East on Oct. 12 and University of the Santo Tomas Oct. 16. Ricky Dandan will call the shots for the Fighting Maroons in lieu of Perasol.
“The commissioner is improvising to justify the legally unjustifiable,” said Galang. “In his first memo, he said that the two-game suspension was for continuous flagrant acts of aggression.
Now, in an effort to justify each suspended game, he has gone back to the footage and tried to identify each of the purported acts of unsportsmanlike conduct.”
READ UP’S FULL STATEMENT:
The management of the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons is disappointed with the decision of UAAP Tournament Commisisoner Jensen Ilagan to deny our motion for reconsideration (MR) appealing the three-game suspension of Coah Bo Perasol.
In denying the MR, we believe that the Commissioner passed up an opportunity to right an egregious wrong. We likewise believe that the decision of Commissioner Ilagan is terribly misguided and based on a poor understanding of the tournament rules, a faulty appreciation of the facts, and a blatant disregard for precedent.
It is our contention, after reading the Commissioner’s memo denying the MR, that he is improvising to justify the legally unjustifiable. In his first memo he said that the additional two-game suspension was for “continuous flagrant acts of aggression;” now in an effort to justify each suspended game, he has gone back to the footage and tried to identify each of the purported acts of unsportsmanlike conduct.
But even if you look at those so-called acts by themselves, do they merit a one-game suspension? They say Coach Bo pointed an accusing and threatening finger to the official and that he deserves a one-game suspension for this; but other coaches do the same during the game without even the benefit of a technical.
The Commissioner talks about the values of what makes the UAAP and sports great, but he forgot the most important one: fairness.
His decision, in our view, fails to take into consideration the reasons behind the outburst in the first place. As we stressed in the MR, this confrontation was not the result of the officiating of just one game.
To reiterate what we explained in the MR: “as someone who loves basketball and is devoted to his players and our alma mater, Coach Bo is passionate about the game, how it is played, and how it is officiated. Like many of those who have been a part of and have been entertained by the tournament these past years, Coach Bo cannot countenance unjust, unfair, and inexplicably inconsistent officiating.”
The fact of the matter is our long experience with bad officiating and the unheeded pleas for much-needed officiating reforms has contributed to our collective frustration with our refs––the same kind of frustration that Coach Bo displayed in the game against Ateneo.
We remind officials of the UAAP that everything has context. Coach Bo’s display of emotion and the ensuing confrontation with the game official should not be viewed as disrespect for the UAAP, the game of basketball, or its rules––but an expression of pent-up frustration rooted in the inability of game officials to consistently enforce the game’s rules. It was also a result of Coach Bo’s desire to seek clarification for what he believed was an uncalled for technical foul on center Bright Akhuetie.
Coach Bo fought for his players, fought for what is right. If the UAAP wants to do the right thing, then it should go after erring referees and resolve to address poor officiating with the same enthusiasm it has when it comes to punishing the league’s passionate coaches and players.
Atty. Patricia Galang
Atty. Jayson Jorvina
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.