THE NCAA is looking at tapping referees from the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) for Season 94 of the collegiate league that's set to open on July 7 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Perpetual Help’s Frank Gusi, who chairs the NCAA management committee, said the MPBL's pool of referees will take the place of the Basketball Referees Association for Schools, Colleges and Universities (BRASCU), which was tapped a season ago.
“The pool of referees from the MPBL will officiate this year,” said Gusi.
League commissioner Arturo “Bai” Cristobal, back at the helm for the second straight year, confirmed the recent development but stressed the NCAA board will only finalize it this week.
“The league will make the final decision this coming week,” said Cristobal, who, incidentally, is also in charge of officials in Manny Pacquiao's home-and-away league.
Ironically, the bulk of the MPBL's referees also came from the BRASCU, sources said.
The new season's opening game puts defending champion San Beda against Perpetual Help at 2 p.m. followed by the 4 p.m. encounter between San Sebastian and last year’s losing finalist Lyceum.
The opening rites will start at 12 noon.
Meanwhile, Gusi said the NCAA on Tour will continue with Perpetual Help, Letran-Calamba, Jose Rizal, Arellano U, and La Salle-Greenhills or San Sebastian-Cavite playing host to first-round games.