MANILA, Philippines – Two-time UAAP juniors Most Valuable Player (MVP) Jerie Pingoy is remaining positive even after the UAAP Board decided to uphold a residency rule that will force him to sit out for two years.
Pingoy, who transferred to the Ateneo de Manila University after playing for Far Eastern University (FEU) in high school, is one of the many UAAP athletes who will be affected by the league’s new residency rule.
The rule, informally called "The Jerie Pingoy Rule," requires a high school athlete from a UAAP-member school to undergo a two-year residency if he or she will transfer to a different UAAP school for college.
After the UAAP Board announced Tuesday that they will uphold the rule and impose it starting Season 76, Pingoy tweeted: "It's all right guys! Don’t be sad about the new rules. Everything has a reason."
Pingoy later added that the two-year residency will allow him to adjust to his new school and focus on his academics.
"I would like to thank the Ateneo community for the support," Pingoy said. "I love basketball, but my priority now is to study."
"But I feel really bad for the other student-athletes who are affected by this new rule," he added.
The high-scoring guard also emphasized that he is not leaving Ateneo.
"I will always be supporting the team sa UAAP. (I) will be the number one cheerleader," Pingoy said.
Many UAAP athletes and fans have spoken out against the controversial residency rule, including Pingoy's Blue Eagles teammate and former UAAP Rookie of the Year Kiefer Ravena.
The new UAAP rule was also the subject of a Senate hearing, with Sen. Pia Cayetano asking the UAAP Board earlier this month to reconsider the rule.
The UAAP Board is currently "working on the explanatory rules on the application of the said residency requirement," which they will reveal later this month.