New head coach wants EAC to have ‘never say die attitude’
Tricia Robredo on Jul 03, 2015 12:03 PM
NEVER SAY DIE. He may not have connections with professional basketball's crowd favorites, but new head coach Andy De Guzman wants to see his EAC Generals competing until the very end of every game.
Coming into his debut game as head coach of the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals, Andy De Guzman felt nothing but excited, upbeat, and enthusiastic. After their 108-80 loss to San Beda College last Thursday however, it seems like he wasn’t able to influence his boys into feeling the same way.
“Dalawang linggo naming pinaghandaan ang (San) Beda pero ‘di ko alam kung anong nangyari. Sa nilaro namin, parang walang nangyari sa training,” a very dismayed De Guzman told ABS-CBN Sports.
However, he also quickly added that it’s good that the loss happened early and came against a top-caliber team. Now they know what to avoid and what to work on.
Asked how the team is taking to their new head coach, point guard Francis Munsayac described De Guzman as a disciplinarian who is most especially strict when it comes to punctuality. “Kapag 6:00 ng umaga yung ensayo, 5:30 kumpleto na dapat kami. Mas grabe ang disiplina ngayon,” Munsayac shared.
For coach Andy though, that still isn’t enough. In the coming days, de Guzman is expected to be firmer with his rookie-laden squad. He needs to make men out of these boys and toughen them up for the physicality of the league.
Striking the perfect balance, however, seems to be an even trickier business. After Munsayac was slapped with a disqualifying foul, de Guzman felt the need to re-emphasize the importance of playing by the book and being in control of their emotions. “Nagkaroon kaming mga coaches ng meeting bago pa magsimula at napag-usapan doon itong mga fouls. Ang tagal ko na ring sinabihan yung mga bata tungkol diyan,” he said.
More importantly, coach Andy would like his Generals to develop a never say die attitude by saying, “Yung tipong lalaban hanggang huli at kung hindi na kaya ipanalo yung laban, ilapit lang ang score at the very least.” He shared that he wants his boys to give each team a run for their money, no matter who they are and how they match up against them.
He has big dreams for the team but also knows that it would take some time before they reach grander things. For now, Andy de Guzman believes that his more immediate responsibility as head coach is to help each individual discover and realize his own potential, to bring all of them together into a cohesive unit, and to make the EAC Generals as psyched up and as optimistic as he is about the journey ahead.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @jpgrobredo.