FORMER national coach Joe Lipa has been appointed anew as basketball commissioner for Season 89 of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
This is the second straight year the Policy Board and Management Committee (MANCOM) of the NCAA selected the revered mentor to take charge of basketball-related matters in the league.
"We're excited to have coach Joe Lipa again, a respected coach and basketball official in our country. We're looking forward to work with him again this season," said the league in a statement.
St. Benilde is this year’s NCAA host.
Lipa has been involved in various capacitires in the NCAA in the past, although it was only last year when the collegiate body - through last season's host Letran - appointed him as commissioner.
According to the 68-year-old Lipa, he will be bringing with him referees from the Basketball Referees Association for Schools, Colleges and Universities (BRASCU) led by technical chief Romy Guevara, to officiate the games.
"I'm very happy the NCAA gave me the trust and confidence to be the commissioner again," said Lipa on Friday. "I'm thankful and appreciative to the NCAA Policy Board and MANCOM, which I have to reciprocate by doing my best."
"Our goal this season is to continue the NCAA tradition of fairness, empathy, and respect in the true spirit of sportsmanship and to continuously educate the players, as well as the coaches about the rules of the game of basketball," Lipa added.
Opening games on June 22 at the SM Mall of Asia will have defending champion San Beda and host school Benilde facing off at 4 p.m., while San Sebastian and last season's runner-up Letran clash in the 6 p.m. main game.
Meanwhile, this year’s host will have its kick-off party on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Augusto-Rosario Theater, 5th floor of the DLS-CSB Taft Campus.
This will be the second time Benilde will play host to the NCAA since 2006.
"After seven years, we're thrilled to be the host again this year. We're optimistic that Season 89 will be another banner year for the NCAA," said league ManCom chairman Dax Castellano of Benilde.