Manila, Philippines – National University is pulling all the stops for a successful hosting of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 75 which will begin on July 14 at the state-of-the-art Mall of Asia Arena.
Besides, the Bulldogs are ready to end a long title drought in the men’s basketball competitions which has spanned for more than six decades.
“This is the first hosting of National University with our new partners the SM group of companies. We are all excited,“ said UAAP Season 75 president Nilo J.
Ocampo. “We want to show it to our fans, supporters, especially our alumni and make them proud of our school.“
What makes this season’s hosting special is National U will hold most of its basketball games at the Mall of Asia Arena, the country’s newest sporting stadium.
“We can call this the home of the Bulldogs,“ said Ocampo. “Sixty percent of our men’s basketball games will be at MOA Arena.“
With the help of the sports program initiated by National U athletic director Junel Baculi, who is also the league’s secretary-treasurer, the Bulldogs are expected to figure well in other sports aside from basketball.
In Season 74, the Bullpups ruled the juniors basketball and the Bulldogs topped the baseball competitions, ending National U’s long dry spell of winning a championship in any sport in the se niors division.
“I think it will be a very good year for us in all events,“ said Ocampo.
Other teams to watch out for National U are men’s lawn tennis and men’s badminton, both finished second in Season 74, as well as in men’s volleyball, where the Bulldogs won a couple of offseason crowns.
“Now, for sure not just in basketball but in all events, and we hope we can give everyone a tough competition, “ said Ocampo.
Of course, with the unbeaten championship run in last month’s Filoil Flying V Pre-Season Hanes Cup, National U is installed as one of the pre-season favorites for the crown.
Ocampo also added that the Mall of Asia can be accommodated as host the finals of women’s and men’s volleyball, which is held in the second semester.
An explosive opening weekend awaits basketball fans, as National U, starring last season’s Most Valuable Player Bobby Ray Parks, takes on University of the East at 2 p.m. right after the hour-long opening ceremonies, while University of Santo Tomas battles Far Eastern University at 4 p.m.
Ateneo’s drive for a fifth consecutive seniors basketball championship starts on the next day, July 15, with a showdown with Adamson at 4 p.m. right after the 2 p.m. duel between La Salle and University of the Philippines.