UP launches basketball school

John Bryan Ulanday - Philstar.com
UP launches basketball school
Fighting Maroons Basketball School logo

MANILA, Philippines -- There is no way to go but up for the University of the Philippine basketball program.

On the heels of its second straight championship in the Filoil EcoOil 17th ECJ Preseason Cup, the State U has launched the Fighting Maroons Basketball School (FMBS) in a bid to grow the sport from the grassroots level and up.

Boys and girls aged 8 to 16 will be given an opportunity to be trained by the country’s national university through the UP Office for Athletics and Sports Development (OASD) led by former head coach and now director Bo Perasol.

It’s the first official basketball grassroots development program by the Fighting Maroons, who are leaving no stone unturned in their relentless rise as one of the country's best collegiate basketball programs today both in men’s and women’s divisions.

"We're happy to launch the FMBS as a way to give back to the UP community, tapos at the same time, makakapag-pave din tayo ng path para sa mga bata who want to follow in the footsteps of Carl Tamayo and CJ Cansino, then now, also Louna Ozar and Favour Onoh," said Perasol.

The inaugural MFBS clinic will kick off on July 8-13 at the UP Community Court inside the Diliman campus followed by the second run from July 29 to August 3 still at the same venue.

UP also hinted at opening programs for other sports, putting a premium on the role of the youth for the country’s future.

"Yung ganitong initiative is much welcome for both the UP OASD and the UP community. Through this basketball school - and in the future, many other sports as well - we hope to provide another venue to promote being stronger and better through sports together," added Perasol.

UP has made it to the three straight finals in the UAAP men’s, including a historic title in Season 84 to snap a 36-year title drought, while the women’s team finished at the podium in Season 86 for the first time since 2008.

The Fighting Maroons also served as home to Season 84 Finals MVP and Season 85 MVP Malick Diouf, Rookies of the Year Carl Tamayo (Season 84) and Francis Lopez (Season 86) as well as Rookie of the Year Favour Onoh in the Season 86’s women’s division.

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