Kobe Paras still grateful despite UP Final 4 exit
MANILA, Philippines—Kobe Paras would rather look at the bright side after University of the Philippines’ exit in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament.
The Fighting Maroons lost twice to University of Santo Tomas in the semifinal stepladder and the 68-65 loss on Wednesday at Mall of Asia Arena booted them out of title contention.
Instead of sulking, Paras said he’s actually happy with how his collegiate career continued after much difficulty in the United States as an NCAA Division I recruit and, for a brief time, player.
“This loss just made me happy and I’m just grateful,” said Paras. “I’m super appreciative of all the schools I went up against and this was the first time that I’ve been playing in a while so I’m just really happy.”
Paras was a high school standout, both in academics and athletics, with Cathedral and Middlebrooks in California and shortly committed thereafter to University of California in Los Angeles.
The athletic 6-foot-6 forward, however, withdrew from UCLA after failing to meet the school’s academic requirements.
From UCLA, Paras moved on to Creighton where he was finally able to play college basketball but eventually withdrew after failing to secure a regular playing role with the Blue Jays and thus enrolling with Cal State Northridge where he was a student-athlete for less than a year.
UP thus became Paras’ fourth college after he enrolled at the State University in 2018.
“This is my fourth college and what I learned is to be grateful for what I have,” said Paras who had eight points and three rebounds in his final game of the season. “My plan A didn’t work, this is my plan B and my plan B is still the dream for other people.”
“I’ve learned to love myself and be more appreciative of what I have instead of wanting more things and I think that’s a lesson for a lot of people in this world that you have be grateful for what you have.”
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