MARK Isip is the latest former Tamaraw to return to his alma mater and pitch in as a member of Far Eastern University's coaching staff
FEU head coach Olsen Racela shared that the 10-year PBA veteran has joined the coaching staff primarily to aid the development of the Tamaraws' next generation of big men.
"He's here for the bigs. Mainly, his focus is our bigs dahil doon ang kailangan namin ng tulong," he said after Isip made his maiden appearance on the bench on Thursday in Chadao-FEU's 83-64 win over Perpetual in the 2019 PBA D-League.
Isip, 38, last played in the PBA in 2016 with GlobalPort and spent some time in the MPBL as a member of the Makati Skyscrapers before joining the FEU coaching staff.
FEU has lost Nigerian big man Prince Orizu and forwards Arvin Tolentino and Richard Escoto to graduation, leaving Racela with an inexperienced frontline madeup of Ken Tuffin, Barkley Ebona, Clifford Jopia, and Cameroonian Patrick Tchuente.
"Kailangan namin ng coaches who will help us with the skill work," the PBA great said.
Aside from Isip, Racela also added that Vic Pablo will be part of his staff.
Denok Miranda has earlier been unveiled as an assistant coach, with his focus on the development of guards like L-Jay Gonzales and Alec Stockton.
Racela has a stacked coaching staff behind him, with brother Nash, Johnny Abarrientos, Eric Gonzales, Richie Ticzon, Gilbert Lao, Ryan Betia, and Jonathan de Guzman.
"We're trying to win as many games as possible here. Kung pumasok kami sa top four, it's better for us, but our main focus now is giving exposure to our players," he said as the Tamaraws sport a 3-3 slate in the Foundation Group.
"If you notice, some guys who are second stringers last year are playing major roles now, and those who are not used as part of the team are playing regular minutes now. This is good exposure for all of them."