Scottie Thompson remembers ‘tatay, lolo, coach’ Aric in emotional tribute
MANILA, Philippines–Ginebra guard Scottie Thompson paid an emotional tribute to legendary coach Aric del Rosario, who passed away on Thursday at the age of 80.
In an Instagram post, Thompson, who played with del Rosario at Perpetual Help in the NCAA from 2012 to 2015, bared his heart out in a lengthy message, thanking the veteran mentor for making him who he is today.
“This is one of the saddest and most shocking news that I received in my life. Tatay, Papa, Daddy, Lolo, coach, and mentor Aric, thank you very much for all the lessons you taught me in every aspect of life,” wrote Thompson.
“You’re one of the reasons why I am here right now and for all that I have. You are the reason. Even in the PBA I still carry your advice, and that is to work hard, play well, be kind, and always pray then you’d go to places.”
“More than anything, you said to accept what you have right now. You said ‘you want more? work hard for it!’ and because of that line, I’m here where I today.”
After leading University of Santo Tomas to a historic four-peat in the 1990s in the UAAP, del Rosario returned to collegiate basketball and became the head coach of the title-contending Altas.
At Perpetual, del Rosario steered the team to three straight Final Four appearances in four seasons and molded Thompson into an MVP and a first-round PBA draft pick.
Thompson also shared a story about how del Rosario would often give his players, who came from the provinces and usually played in Manila for a chance at a better life, money for allowance out of his own pocket.
“You never made us feel that you’re just a coach, you were our father because you knew we’re far from our families. The moment I knew you, you became my coach in life. You taught us to be brave…. You will always be in our hearts, we love you coach!” Thompson said.
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