UAAP eyeing 3x3 to be a regular sport next season

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Mar 01, 2018 08:20 PM
UAAP eyeing 3x3 to be a regular sport next season
The UAAP is upbeat that it will be adding 3x3 basketball to the tally for the general championship as early as next season

Far Eastern University has yet again proven to be at the forefront of change in the UAAP.

The host school that instituted the Final Four format and that moved volleyball games to bigger venues has another innovation now in the 80th Season – 3x3 basketball.

The league is nothing but excited to venture out into another new frontier. “Historically, FEU has taken bold steps and we see that again this year, the first time we’re having the 3x3. We thank them for taking another bold step forward,” executive director Atty. Rebo Saguisag said in the pre-event press conference on Thursday.

The first-ever 3x3 tournament in the UAAP will be held on Sunday at the SM MOA Music Hall in Pasay.

As it turns out, this is all in aid of growing 3x3 as a sport – especially as it is set to become an Olympic event in 2020. “We discussed it internally muna and really felt na we wanted it to be pushed by FEU this year. Hopefully, pati na rin buong UAAP,” FEU athletic director Mark Molina said.

According to Molina, all eight member-schools have been nothing but receptive of the innovation. “When we presented it to the UAAP, it was unanimous on the part of all schools. They were behind it 100 percent,” he said.

Not only that, even the host venue is enthusiastic about partaking in what could be a historic inaugural tournament. “The response is quite good from everybody. MOA is excited and we’re happy,” the FEU athletic director said.

Still, the host school knows very well that this is only the beginning and UAAP 3x3 basketball can only grow from here. “This will be the start. This will be very modest lang, one day lang muna tayo,” Molina said.

That also means, however, that the Morayta-based school is already planning to push the event to become a regular sport in the season. “Hopefully, this will be a regular sport in the UAAP come next season. If volleyball has indoor and beach volleyball, I don’t see any reason why we can’t have indoor and 3x3 basketball,” their athletic director said.

He continued, “It can be a regular sport in the second semester by Season 81 – that’s the target.”

At present, the league has 15 regular sports and two demonstration events in cheerdance and streetdance.

For now, 3x3 basketball will also be a demonstration event.

With a good showing in its inaugural tournament, though, Saguisag sees no obstacle for it to become an event that will count in the general championship. “We really ask for your support. We’re very positive and everybody’s excited,” he remarked.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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