By Jerome Lagunzad
To ensure shenanigans won’t have any place in the league, the National Collegiate Athletic Association is determined to implement strict measures based on the House Bill Number 5032, also known as “The Anti-Game-Fixing Act of 2017,” starting in Season 94 that gets going next month.
No less than current Management Committee chairman Frank Gusi of season host University of Perpetual Help disclosed the latest bold step that the country’s oldest collegiate league is taking in cooperation with key government agencies to curtail the act of game-fixing – long the scourge of collegiate basketball.
“Once you will be caught, you will be banned for lifetime in the NCAA,” he said yesterday during the PSA Forum in Tapa King-Farmer’s Plaza in Quezon City. “That’s why we are reminding all school officials, coaches and persons concerned to be vigilant and make sure their respective players won’t get involved in such act.”
Current NCAA president and Perpetual Help owner Atty. Antonio Tamayo, with the help of NCAA legal counsel Joseph Estrada, even did his fair share of helping define the house bill filed by 1Pacman Partylist representative Eric Pineda as the principal sponsor and fellow representative Mikee Romero as one of the co-authors.
According to the NCAA position paper, a copy which was presented by Gusi, “game-fixing shall refer to any arrangement, combination, scheme or agreement made by any person or persons, who for valuable consideration or money gain, maliciously conducts or cause to be conducted any game, race or sports competition…
“The outcome of which shall be predicted or known to other than on the basis of the honest playing skill or ability of the players or participants or in a manner that would remove or otherwise undermine the competitive nature of the game or sport, in order to produce predetermined result.”
Gusi also added that the league’s Policy Board will stay true to its earlier agreement that foreign student-athletes, most of them seeing action in seniors basketball, could only play until Season 95 which will be hosted by Arellano.
“It was agreed upon back in Season 90. So this year, we decided whether you still have playing years left, we will impose the rule on Season 96. But all foreigners who underwent residency can still play for Seasons 94 and 95,” he said.
While he kept his cards close to his chest regarding Perpetual Help’s plans for the opening rites on July 7 at the Mall of Asia Arena, Gusi said the school is pulling out all the stops to make sure the NCAA will have another banner year.
The 3×3 basketball, a fast-rising discipline which will become an Olympic sport for the very first time in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, will part of the NCAA sporting calendar for the second straight season and will be played in the second semester.