IF there was one thing Dwight Ramos was looking forward to in his run with Ateneo, it was teaming up with his brother Eli.
After all, it has been five years now since the Ramoses last played in the same team during their time with Walnut High School in California.
"I really wanted to play with my brother there and share that whole Ateneo and UAAP experience," he told Radyo5's Power and Play with Noli Eala.
It was in the 2015-16 season when the Ramoses last wore the same jersey.
Dwight was a senior for the Mustangs, posting 28.0 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 2.5 steals, and 1.6 blocks, while Eli was a freshman averaging 9.2 points, 4.4 boards, and 2.1 dimes.
Since then, Dwight has gone on to play college ball for Cal State Fullerton and Cal Poly Pomona before he and his brother chose to head home to the Philippines and commit to Ateneo in 2019.
Unfortunately, the global COVID-19 pandemic and opportunities that arose for Dwight stemming from his excellent performance for Gilas Pilipinas led to him leaving the Blue Eagles' nest and turn pro in Japan for the Toyama Grouses.
It was a tough decision for Dwight to make, all the more as he hoped to pair a deadly combo with his younger brother Eli.
But he's confident that those who are left will be able to still continue Ateneo's dynastic run in the UAAP.
"Even without me, that team is really strong and they have a lot of new guys," said Ramos, pointing out that aside from his brother Eli, the Blue Eagles have also welcomed new faces like Chris Koon, Kai Ballungay, Andrew Bongo, and Gab Gomez.
Still in the saddle for Ateneo are Ramos' Gilas peers Ange Kouame and SJ Belangel, transferee Dave Ildefonso, and incoming rookies Forthsky Padrigao and Josh Lazaro.
"Everybody’s just been working hard, so I think even without me that team is gonna be super strong, too," he said.
The Blue Eagles have shown proof to that, winning the 2019 Philippine Collegiate Champions League just before the pandemic hit.
Nonetheless, Ramos couldn't help but dwell on the what ifs, as he's certain that had he played, Ateneo would have definitely won another title and extend its dominance to a four-peat, saying, "To be honest, I think we would have won the title, for sure."
For now, though, Dwight have to settle to cheering the blue-and-white from the bleachers and support his brother Eli from the sidelines whenever the UAAP Season 84 finally commences.
"I’m excited to watch them when the season starts," he said.
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