MANILA, Philippines – After University of the Philippines (UP) snapped a 27-game losing skid last Saturday, team manager Dan Palami is now looking for the Fighting Maroons to make the Final Four in UAAP men’s basketball next season.
“That would be the target. Because UP is the host next year,” Palami told Reuben Terrado in a report on Spin.ph.
To do that, Palami plans to bring in foreign-bred talents to UP -- just like what he did with the Philippine Azkals, where he also serves as team manager.
“We sent somebody to other countries to look for talents,” said Palami. “I’m not a basketball expert but everything is being studied. Of course, with the support of the UP administration, we hope that our plans will be realized.”
UP recently won its first victory in two years by dominating the Adamson Falcons, 77-64, last Saturday. The win ended a 27 game slump that started on August 19, 2012.
That victory has also awakened the UP spirit, especially after a huge number attended the school's bonfire following the game.
Palami said the time is ripe for the team to get more support from the UP community.
“Kung may chance na makakuha [ng players] now that there is a lot of support coming, I think we are now looking at the long term,” he said.
The last time UP made it to the Final Four was in 1997, when the Fighting Maroons had players like Bryan Gahol, Paolo Mendoza and Ogie Gumatay.