TERRENCE Romeo is under suspension. Russel Escoto is out for the coming UAAP season.
The Far Eastern University Tamaraws' preseason buildup has turned from bad to worse with news that Romeo, a prolific scorer who has had a testy relationship with the team, has been suspended indefinitely for arriving late in the team's recent preseason game, among a number of violations.
As if that was not enough, an MRI examination showed that Escoto has suffered an ACL injury on his left knee while playing for Fruitas in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup quarterfinals on Tuesday that could sideline him for up to six months.
FEU coach Nash Racela admitted that Escoto’s injury is a big blow to a team that is left with only four players in its frontline rotation in foreigners Anthony Hargrove and Christian Sentcheu, Mark Belo, and Carl Bryan Cruz after Arvie Bringas, Mark Bringas and Clarence Foronda were dropped from the roster.
Racela also pointed out that the Tams can only field Hargrove and Sentcheu one at a time due to the league's rule on foreign players.
With regards to Romeo, Racela said one of the reasons for his suspension was when he came late for their Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup game against San Beda.
Racela, however, hinted that the suspension won’t be for a long period of time.
“With the way things developed in the past two to three days, tingin ko maikli lang. Again, we do (these) things to teach the players. We are all after their good. The way I see it, mukhang may effort to change,” Racela said.
Racela said that Romeo’s suspension has nothing to do with his star guard's stint with Big Chill in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup quarterfinals against Fruitas, which has a school tie-up with FEU.
The Shakers were eliminated by the Superchargers despite holding a twice-to-beat advantage. In the series, Romeo erupted for at least 20 points in both games.
The Tamaraws were holed up for almost an hour after a preseason loss to the College of St. Benilde on Friday as they took the opportunity to thresh out their differences.
“Maganda ‘yung nangyari. We opened up because I hear a lot of things sa kanila when it comes to their personal relationships. And now, it’s out in the open. We took advantage of the opportunity,” said Racela.
“Para kaming nag-forced team building. We are very positive. It’s a good introduction,” he added.