THE chance of Hubert Cani and Jerie Pingoy making it to Ateneo's lineup in this season’s UAAP is getting slimmer by the day.
The Blue Eagles did not include the names of Cani and Pingoy in their provisional roster for Season 77 after Friday’s uneventful eligibility committee meeting as the two has yet to secure a release from their former schools, sources told Spin.ph.
Cani is covered by the controversial two-year residency rule on high school graduates transferring to another UAAP member school in college. Pingoy is entering his final year of his residency with the Blue Eagles after transferring from Far Eastern University.
With the UAAP opening just two weeks away, the chance of the two playing this season may rest on the passage of a Senate bill passed by Sen. Pia Cayetano which, among others, prohibit 'unfair practices' in varsity sports including mandatory residency.
However, sources also said that although Cayetano's bill has been passed on third and final reading in the Senate, it still needs to be passed Congress which will only resume its sessions next month.
Nevertheless, Ateneo team manager Epok Quimpo said Ateneo is reaching out to Cani's former school National University to seek the former UAAP juniors star's release.
“To be honest, we are formally seeking approval from Cani’s former school, which is NU. We hope that somehow, they can give the release not only for the team but also for the sake of Hubert and his family,” said Quimpo.
The UAAP is not expected to have issues regarding eligibility in Season 77 as the committee saw no problems with the papers so far of players in the roster submitted by the teams, according to a source.
Although the findings of the eligibility committee will be submitted to the board, teams can still make changes to their roster before the final approval by the board sometime next week.