THE Blue Eagles can relax a bit during the holidays but work resumes in January as they prepare for the title defense in Season 81, according to coach Tab Baldwin.
“I suspect that the target on our backs will be clear,” said Baldwin in a press conference on Saturday before the bonfire celebration.
“It will be bigger. La Salle had to carry it this year and I thought they did it incredibly well. There is no fooling ourselves that we will be everybody’s big game as La Salle was this year.”
Baldwin said he expects other teams to be better especially La Salle, Adamson and National University.
“Looking ahead, we know that this league is a league that is dominated by certain style of plays. La Salle does it well but also coach Franz (Pumaren) at Adamson. He is going to be one year deeper into that job he is working on. His pressure defense is going to be better. Jamike (Jarin) will be better with his pressure defense.
“We know that the UAAP is, in essence, a speed-it-up, fast-paced, high-pressure, high-intensity league and we will try to be methodical, disciplined, and I don’t see any reason why we will change that,” said Baldwin.
For now, Baldwin will let the players celebrate the school’s first championship since the last of five straight titles in 2012. On Friday, parents of the players organized a party to celebrate the title.
“It’s a great occasion for us. We had the opportunity for the first time to get together. The parents of the boys threw a party for the team. We had some laughs. We had some good times last night. You are blessed to win a championship and you sit down with the guys who orchestrated that, it’s a blessing,” said Baldwin.