SAYING his role in the team goes beyond just preparing the game plan, new Globalport coach Pido Jarencio has used his first month in charge to give the Batang Pier a “refresher course” on the essence of playing basketball, in the hope of seeing the players regain their winning mentality.
Jarencio, fresh from steering University of Santo Tomas' Tigers to their second straight UAAP runner-up finish late last year, said he wants to see the Batang Pier play with the rah-rah college spirit when he makes his head-coaching debut in the PBA Commissioner's Cup.
The former PBA star admitted players have a tendency to become complacent when they move to the pros.
“Actually, ang kailangan ng mga iyan (Batang Pier), kumbaga, parang refresher’s course kasi nadaanan na nila 'yan eh,” Jarencio shared to Spin.ph, shortly after Globalport played Barako Bull to an 89-89 standoff in their tuneup match on Thursday at the Gatorade Hoops Center.
“Siyempre, ang buhay ng PBA, naging maluwag. Tapos iyung grasya dumarating, so yung essence minsan ng pagmamahal sa basketball at yung hardwork nawawala na lahat, minsan pumapasok na sa ulo eh,” Jarencio, head coach in the pros for the first time after eight years of coaching the University of Santo Tomas in the UAAP.
Aside from being coach, Jarencio is playing the role of father to a Globalport team that has five rookies, several sophomores and just a few veterans led by Jay Washington, Eric Menk and newly-acquired guard Alex Cabagnot.
“At the end of the day, nasa lupa ka pa rin eh. So ibaba na lang natin ang sarili natin,” he said.
With a week to go before its first official game at the start of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup, Jarencio expects his new team to play with fire and a new spirit as they kick off their campaign against the Air21 Express.
The former PBA guard who played for six teams in a career spanning more than 15 seasons, said the four-team tournament in Cebu last weekend gave him a better grasp of the things the team still needs to improve on come the import-laced conference.
“Marami pang aayusin sa team, pero confidence-building yung panalo namin against Talk ’N Text sa Cebu. Tournament kasi yun eh,” Jarencio said, whose team defeated the Tropang Texters, 85-79, at the close of the Cebu City Charter Cup Invitational Basketball Tournament.