Pinoy ‘papathletes’ we man-crush

Barry Viloria on Jun 21, 2015 09:19 AM
Pinoy ‘papathletes’ we man-crush
We just coined ‘papathlete’ to refer to those who are looked up to for their “skillz” in balancing life both as an athlete and a father.

MANILA, Philippines – As in the international arena, Philippine sports also shares an impressive roster of dad athletes who live to inspire. And, yes, we just coined ‘papathlete’—like ‘mamathlete’—to refer to those who are looked up to for their “skillz” in balancing life both as an athlete and a father. Here’s a list of the country’s coolest papathletes we can’t help but admire, idolize, and, basically, have a man-crush on.

(Photo courtesy of Working Mom Magazine)

Doug Kramer

Ah, Doug Kramer. The epitome of papathlete—married to a gorgeous actress, with whom he has beautiful, cherubs-like, soon-to-be-artista kids. The head of the #TeamKramer started basking in basketball fame playing for the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles in the UAAP. In 2008, a few years after college graduation, he wed Cheska Garcia. He has since held a steady career in the PBA, up to his most recent swap to the GlobalPort Batang Pier. (In the PBA 2015 Philippine Cup Championships, for example, he boosted his former team San Miguel Beermen towards the title.) Check out Doug’s Instagram @dougkramer44 (he currently has 500,000+ followers!), wherein he shows his being a goofball dad and how he is not a fan of the dad bod.

(Photo by Paul del Rosario courtesy of UAAP Magazine)

Alvin Teng

The story of baller brothers Jeron and Jeric Teng headlining the UAAP Season 76 men’s basketball finals about two years ago was interesting in so many levels—especially for the fact that their father also played hoops back in the day. Nicknamed “Robocop” in the PBA, Alvin led the San Miguel Beermen from the late 80s until 1994 with his formidable defense. Alvin left San Miguel in 1994 and, eventually, the PBA, in 1998. He then set out a career in the MBA playing for the Laguna Lakers and the Negros Slashers, and retired from basketball sooner. He would be spotted again near the courts—only by then, he’d be over the sidelines cheering for his two boys, both making their mark in interschool sports. When Jeron and Jeric faced off in the UAAP for their schools DLSU and UST, respectively, he was frequently asked about whose side he was on between his collegiate superstar sons. What’s a dad gonna do? He tried to be fair about it, of course.

(Photo by Tin Patrimonio)

Alvin Patrimonio

Another PBA Hall of Famer is also a dad to sports-inclined siblings. Who wouldn’t know Alvin Patrimonio—Purefoods’ most cherished player with four MVP awards on top of his being an ace player in the Asian Games during his time? Alvin is the father of collegiate tennis stars Tin and Clarice, both making waves in the UAAP as part of the NU Bulldogs (and, in the SEA Games, in Clarice’s case.) The two obviously took their love for sports from their cager dad—Tin actually played basketball first before deciding to just focus on the racket-wielding sport. “My dad is like a best friend to me. He wants me to be happy in whatever endeavors I take on in life,” Tin revealed us once. Standing at 6’3” and with matinee idol looks, Alvin inevitably took a quick showbiz stopover. While there, he did a few films and even got linked to celebs like, well, Kris Aquino.

(Photo courtesy of StarStudio Magazine)

Benjie Paras

Today’s youth know him more as a for-the-laughs actor, but NBA sa Dos analyst Benjie Paras actually boasted of a stellar career both as a collegiate and professional player back then. His most remarkable feats? Bolstering the forever UAAP men’s basketball underdog UP Fighting Maroons to their championship in 1989, and being the only player in the PBA to have bagged both the Rookie of the Year and MVP honors, yes, once. He would play for Shell and San Miguel, and retire in 2003. He married actress Jackie Forster in 1994 and bore basketball player-turned-young actor André and basketball prodigy Kobe with her—until they separated in 2001. Benjie has since wed preschool teacher and former commercial model Lyxen Diomampo, with whom he has two children. Pretty lovely family he has, if you’ve seen them altogether in some magazines and ads.

Bobby Parks Sr.

Watching former two-time UAAP MVP Ray-Ray Parks inch his way towards his NBA dream after training with the Utah Jazz and Brooklyn Nets recently, a faint picture of his late dad Bobby Parks Sr. unsurprisingly comes to mind. Ray-Ray started playing ball at four, with his dad—a seven-time PBA Best Import awardee for leading his teams San Miguel and Shell to five PBA championships, and a star athlete of the University of Memphis—as his mentor. The two grew to be close through the years, especially when Ray-Ray started suiting up for the NU Bulldogs in 2011 up to the time the older Parks succumbed to cancer in March 2013. In a tribute he wrote for UAAP Magazine published that year, he opened up about how much of a “daddy’s boy” he was growing up—“I’d be looking for him whenever he wasn’t around, and, when he returned, we would always have this bonding time where we would go shooting in the park in the evening, even if it’s really dark and all we could see is the ring itself.”

(Photo by JR Gallarza)

JR Gallarza

The youngest on this list of papathletes is still a student. Meet JR Gallarza of the first Filsports Basketball Association champs, UP Fighting Maroons, who, at 23, has a three year-old boy named Reinen. This tall, dark, and handsome jock hailing from Canada is most noted for helping the Diliman squad secure that elusive win in the UAAP men’s basketball event last seasonone celebrated through a bonfire at the school’s iconic Sunken Garden. While JR chases his dreams here as a basketball player or, maybe, guidance counselor (he is, after all, currently taking BE Education, Major in Teaching and Early Grades and is running for honors!), he owes much of his son’s nurturing to his parents in Canada. During breaks, JR flies back there to bond with his son. Go check out his Instagram @jr_gallarza for his videos featuring his FaceTime conversations and more with his adorable kid!


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