WHAT if an NCAA player chooses to play in pro leagues?
For the country’s oldest collegiate league, the issue of possible repercussions on the players’ eligibility if and when they chose to suit up in the pros by getting a special guest license from the Games and Amusements Board should be promptly tackled.
A highly-reliable Malaya-Business Insight source said one of the agenda in today’s Management Committee meeting is whether players will be allowed to play in pro leagues and still be eligible in the NCAA.
University of the Philippines prized playmaker Juan Gomez de Liaño saw action for Nueva Ecija in the 2020 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3×3 President’s Cup, a pro league, after he was granted a special guest license from the GAB, and put to risk his remaining two years of eligibility for the Fighting Maroons.
“That’s one of the agenda of the ManCom meeting today. It’s a pressing issue,” the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.
“While the GAB has given Juan Gomez de Liaño a special license to play in the Chooks-to-Go 3×3 league, collegiate leagues like the UAAP and the NCAA, they have their own ground rules,” the source added.
The source said there were two NCAA member schools who asked if their players can be allowed to play in the Chooks-to-Go 3×3 tilt but opted not to push through with their plans and risk the players’ eligibility status. The source refused to name the schools.
“Actually, may two schools ang nagpaalam if puwede payagan iyong players nila sa Chooks 3×3 pero hindi na lang tumuloy,” explained the source.
“Mahirap na. Kasi, ‘di ba, pro leagues iyon, so if you play there, hindi ka na amateur. That’s why agenda din sa meeting, para mas malinaw.”
What actually gnaws at the NCAA is the fact that several of its players are moonlighting in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League.
“Iyong mga liga like Chooks-to-Go 3×3 and NBL, hindi masyadong iniisip ng NCAA. Ang concern is iyong MPBL kasi doon maraming players ang NCAA,” said the source.
“Buti nga hindi pa ulit nakasimula ang MPBL kasi possibly marami ulit ang maglalaro doon.”
In a joint resolution signed last Oct. 16, the Philippine Sports Commission and the GAB drew the line between professional and amateur athletes and pro and amateur leagues.
“This resolution was done on the initiative of PSC chairman Butch Ramirez in defining amateur and professional athletes and competitions,” GAB chairman Abraham “Baham” Mitra said.