Mac Belo airs side, says he switched to MJM Builders on strength of 'verbal agreement' with Tanduay
FEU star Mac Belo scored 13 points in MJM Builders' 77-78 loss to former team Tanduay Light on Monday at the Ynares Sports Arena. Dante Peralta

FAR Eastern University star Mac Belo said he had a verbal agreement with Tanduay Light management that he will be allowed to play for his school if the Tamaraws have a team in the PBA D-League.

Belo said he signed a contract with the Asia Brewery franchise last year on the condition that that he will be allowed to play for any team that FEU will have a partnership with in the developmental league.

The Tamaraws formed a school tie-up with MJM M-Builders this season, prompting Belo to express his intention to play for the squad through a signed player membership form.

But Tanduay Light has threatened to sue Belo for breach of contract as the FEU star still has a year left in his two-year contract with the Asia Brewery-franchise.

“Sabi ko sa kanila na kung may team ang FEU, doon ako kasi mas priority ko ang school,” Belo to reporters on Monday after scoring 13 points for the M-Builders in a 77-78 loss to Tanduay.

[See Tanduay not giving up on rights to Mac Belo, threatens court action]

When pressed for comment, Tanduay Light coach Lawrence Chongson said he doesn’t remember any conversation with Belo about the pre-condition prior to signing a contract.

“Wala akong ma-recall na ganung pag-uusap,” said Chongson.

For his part, FEU athletic director Mark Molina said the school management is standing by Belo and is ready to support the star forward in the event he will be hauled to court by Tanduay.

“We are standing by him. We believe him and he told me that last year na may ganoong usapan,” said Molina.

Molina recalled the case of former FEU stars Terrence Romeo and RR Garcia, who signed a player management form with NLEX and Big Chill, respectively, even though the Tamaraws fielded a school-based team in Fruitas.

The FEU athletic director also hopes that the Belo issue won’t reach the courts.

“Sana wala pero if there are legal implications, we will be here to support Mac. But hopefully, wala. Wait and see lang,” said Molina.

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