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UAAP eyes April opening

The UAAP is now plotting to start Season 83 on April next year. UAAP photo

THE UAAP is now plotting to start its coronavirus-stalled Season 83 competitions by April next year.

Like all collegiate leagues, the UAAP is still waiting for the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious
Diseases (IATF) to approve the implementing rules and regulations of student-athletes’ return to training – a first of a long, slow step
towards having the season to push through.

During last Saturday’s “Power and Play” cable television appearance, UAAP executive director Rebo Saguisag, who worked on the
guidelines as part of the Technical Working Group put together by the Commission on Higher Education, said the protocols are being fine-tuned for the IATF’s final approval.

Yung face to face training, eh wala pa. So until the IATF finally clears the return of face to face training, wala pa po. As we
speak, wala pa, hindi pa pwede,” said Saguisag.

With holding events in 2020 a foregone conclusion of being shelved, the league is now studying its options for 2021.

Pending a UAAP Board of Trustees resolution, Saguisag said that the league is hoping that the new season can start in April.

Again, this is not an official UAAP position,” said Saguisag. “But we are probably looking at, if ma-approve ang training, hopefully we
can start training by mid-January, after the Christmas break.

And tamang-tama, sabi ng coaches they need mga two to three months to prepare. So after Easter Sunday naman, I think that’s April 4, or 5, hopefully if all goes well, we may be looking at starting the season by April,” he added.

However, a full season may not be possible, as Saguisag also noted that the UAAP is looking at holding a few selected sports to be
played in a “bubble“, which has the professional leagues has been doing to restart the tournaments.

Among the sports being considered are the centerpiece men’s basketball and women’s volleyball events.

Yun po ang mga pinag-aaralan. Hindi pa sinasabing tuloy, pero pinapag-aralan,” said Saguisag.

The UAAP was forced to cancel its second semester sports in April due to the Luzon-wide lockdown. The league last played on March 9, when Nazareth School of National University was crowned as the high school boys basketball champions.

The new season was supposed to have its traditional September start, but the persistent coronavirus pandemic in the country prevented
the league from pushing through the tournaments.