WITH the NCAA eyeing to launch its 96th season early next year, Lyceum coach Topex Robinson does not see the need to rush his team’s preparations.
Not now, especially with the country’s COVID-19 pandemic woes having no end in sight.
“Well, everything for us right now is done online,” Robinson told Malaya-Business Insight yesterday.
“We were able to send all our players to their families so that’s a big relief for us,” he added.
After reaching the finals in 2017 and 2018, the Pirates finished the elimination round with a 13-5 record for second but bowed to eventual champion Letran in their stepladder semifinal duel in the last NCAA cage wars.
Lyceum lost 6-foot-6 Cameroonian import Mike Harry Nzeusseu, forwards Ralph Tansingco and Jeff Santos, and guard Spencer Pretta due to graduation.
Speedy twins Jaycee and Jayvee Marcelino, who were both drafted in the pro league by Alaska and Phoenix, respectively, also opted to forgo their fifth and final year for the Pirates.
Jaycee Marcelino, a member of the league’s Mythical team, led the Intramuros-based five with 18.6 points per game, to go with 5.1 rebounds, and 2.8 assists last season in the post CJ Perez-era.
Nzeusseu was good for 16 points per game and a team-best 10.6 boards.
Playmaker Renzo Navarro and forwards Jayson David and Reymar Caduyac are expected to lead Lyceum’s bid to win its first title since joining the league in 2011.
Among the blue-chip recruits of the Pirates are Gilas Pilipinas Youth and Lyceum high school standout Mac Guadana and high-scoring wingman John Bravo of First City Providential College.