UAAP 82: One more chance for NU to put the pieces of the puzzle together

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Aug 28, 2019 06:20 PM
One more chance for NU to put the pieces of puzzle together
NU believes it's better late than never in terms of realizing the potential of its big-time recruiting haul a season ago (Photos by Josh Albelda and Arvin Lim)

HOW’D THEY DO LAST SEASON? 4-10, seventh

YES, THEY’RE STILL HERE: John Lloyd Clemente, John Galinato, JV Gallego, Issa Gaye, Enzo Joson, Dave Ildefonso, Shaun Ildefonso, Jonas Tibayan

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY: Robert Minerva, Migs Oczon, Chino Mosqueda (returning from injury)

GOOD LUCK ON FUTURE ENDEAVORS: Matt Aquino, Rev Diputado, Troy Rike, Dave Wilson Yu

WHAT SHOULD WE EXPECT FROM NU?

NU still has each and every one of its recruits from its big-time offseason a year ago when it was named ABS-CBN Sports’ first-ever King of Recruiting.

With Ildefonso brothers Shaun and Dave, John Lloyd Clemente, and John Galinato coming in, the Bulldogs were poised to break out and barge back into the playoffs – only, that wasn’t what happened and they only had four wins to show for that big-time offseason.

Still, that young core, now battle-hardened, has remained intact and UAAP 82 may very well they year it lives up to the hype.

Hey, better late than never and both Dave I. and JLC are bound to keep moving on up all while Shaun I. takes the reins of leadership.

Even better, the bench that already includes the likes of John Galinato and Jonas Tibayan has only been bolstered by the entries of Robert Minerva and Migs Oczon, two promising prospects used to winning.

WHO IS/ARE THE PLAYER/S TO WATCH OUT FOR FROM NU?

Sophomore slumps will be put to the test when both Dave I. and JLC put a heavier burden on their backs at the forefront of the NU offensive.

Dave I. was given all the freedom in the world in his first season in Sampaloc, but at the same time, looked like he was being asked to do too much, too quickly. JLC, meanwhile, proved to be inconsistent in his first go-round trying to prove that he was, indeed, college-ready.

Those two rising stars are, more likely than not, going to take the next step, but a shinier spotlight may very well be put on Shaun I. who will have to make sure that all of the Bulldogs push forward with the game plan and play to their strengths.

WHY SHOULD WE ROOT FOR NU?

NU is young as they come with two sophomores in Dave I. and JLC showing the way.

Without a doubt, youth will be served for the Bulldogs and who doesn’t love seeing upstarts stand up to traditional powerhouses?

And you just know head coach Jamike Jarin will have his boys running all over the court – the only question is if he will still have his voice to keep yelling in Jamike-like fashion.

WHERE WOULD NU BE AT THE END OF UAAP SEASON 82?

The playoffs is still a ways away for NU, but there is, indeed, light at the end of the tunnel.

What matters more for the Bulldogs this season is for Dave I. and JLC to fulfill their potential as leading men and everybody else to do their best to be the two’s strong supporting cast.

WHEN IS NU’S FIRST GAME IN UAAP SEASON 82?

Ildefonso brothers Dave and Shaun join forces with John Lloyd Clemente to shoot NU to an upset victory versus Adamson on September 7 at Araneta Coliseum

Of course, everybody goes All for More and, as always, all of the action will be on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, iWant and livestream.

HERE’S WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE SEVEN OTHER TEAMS IN UAAP SEASON 82:

With its arsenal fully loaded, UE’s ambush good to go in UAAP 82

Espana’s hope in UAAP 82? Cansino’s return to form, UST’s return to playoffs

All-Filipino La Salle all set to cut UAAP 82 rivals down to size

Brave FEU not backing down from more heralded UAAP 82 rivals

Behind Ahanmisi, Adamson’s youth will be on the march in UAAP 82

For the first time in a long time, UP has gone all-in for UAAP 82

Ateneo out to give its latest golden generation a fitting farewell in UAAP 82

 

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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