Ndiaye looms as a good prospect
With Technological Institute of the Philippines (TIP) dissolving its varsity programs, a handful of prospects from the school’s basketball team, including Senegalese big man Papa Ndiaye, may move to other schools.
Although no formal announcement has been made by the school just yet, TIP basketball coach Potit de Vera said they were already informed of the decision by the management as there remains to be no clear timetable when sports will return following the coronavirus pandemic.
“It (disbandment of cage program) was something that was just waiting to happen,” said De Vera, who coached the Engineers since 2012. The Engineers made notable runs in the NCRAA and later the UCBL in recent years.
It’s not the first time that a varsity program had been dissolved in this crisis as a task force in Letran recommended that its football and volleyball teams also cease to operate to cut costs.
Also in the leaked Letran document, the school, the second-oldest in the country after another Dominican learning institution in University of Santo Tomas, would also be cutting board and lodging allowances of its players coming from all sports.
De Vera said his players have the option to stay and study at TIP, whose most notable product is Jorey Napoles, a forward playing for the Phoenix Fuel Masters in the PBA.
But De Vera also could not deny the fact that other schools may take interest in getting the services of his players.
“They are all commendable,” De Vera said of his players.
The 6-foot-8 Ndiaye was a double-double machine when he helped TIP reach the semifinals of the PBA D-League Foundation Cup last season.
By his count, De Vera said Ndiaye has one more year of eligibility in college. “I think he’s one of the most skilled foreign big men to have played here,” De Vera said of Ndiaye, who was a top 100 high school prospect in the United States a few years ago.
The Senegalese big man belonged to the batch of Thon Maker and Harry Giles, who now play for the Detroit Pistons and Sacramento Kings, respectively. INQ
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