caption -- Mike Magpayo is the first coach of Filipino descent to call the shots for an NCAA Division 1 school. Photo courtesy of Mike Magpayo on Facebook.
MANILA - He is breaking new ground as the first coach of Filipino descent to call the shots for an NCAA Division 1 school, but working in the Philippines will always remain an option for Mike Magpayo.
Magpayo was named the head coach of University of California, Riverside earlier this month, making him the first coach of Asian descent to hold such a position. He replaced David Patrick as the coach of the squad.
Speaking on the Coaches Unfiltered podcast presented by SMART, Magpayo said he would "absolutely" consider a move to the Philippines to be a coach.
"That's my dream," he said. "I really did go out there (in 2015) and I love Coach Chot (Reyes). I don't know him personally, but I follow him and I read some of his leadership stuff. That's my dream."
"I've always told (TNT assistant coach) Josh Reyes that, 'Hey, if you need help.' He actually asked me for a couple of things a couple of years ago," he added. "I'd love to just help, be a part of it."
Magpayo revealed that his parents still have a place in Makati, and they would "love" for him to go back to the Philippines and coach there.
While he is excited for his upcoming season with UC Riverside, Magpayo says he keeps the Philippines in his mind when thinking about his future.
"I always joke, not joke, I always say it's gonna happen one day. Everybody gets fired. The only guys that never gotten fired are… who hasn't gotten fired? (San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg) Popovich, maybe," he said.
"Everybody gets fired. Phil Jackson got fired. So when I get fired, we're going out there and trying to get a job in the Philippines and live a beautiful life and be around other family that we have," he said. "I would definitely consider it."
Magpayo, 40, was the defensive coordinator at UC Riverside before being promoted to head coach. He also served on the coaching staff of Columbia University and Campbell University before making his way to UC Riverside in 2018.
Before becoming the head coach at UC Riverside, he also founded the Asian Coaches Association.
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website).