AT his current pace, Andrei Caracut is on pace to run away with the Rookie of the Year, an award the UAAP exclusively gives to a player fresh from high school.
But the La Salle freshman is still not looking that far ahead.
“Rookie of the Year?” said Caracut as he laughed off the question posed to him at the end of the postgame press conference following the Green Archers' 72-64 win over University of the East. “Sa ngayon, iniisip ko bawat laro lang.”
“Tulad ngayon, tapos na UE, UST naman. ‘Yun yung iniisip ko kung ano ba ‘yung dapat kong gawin sa game na ‘yun,” he added.
But if he keeps playing this way, Caracut can wriggle out of the RoY talk only for long. The former San Beda Red Subs hero is so far averaging 12.6 points in five games with the Green Archers this season.
On Sunday, Caracut was once again a key to another La Salle victory, scoring 16 points including two critical free throws which he casually made to preserve the Archers' third win against two losses.
He was at his best early in the fourth quarter when he followed a rare four-point play with another bomb from beyond the three-point arc that made it 58-41 for the Green Archers.
The streak-shooting guard attributed his fine play so far to the system of La Salle coach Juno Sauler, who he said gives players the freedom to look for their shots.
“Sa team namin, walang bawal eh. Basta ginagawa mo ‘yung tama, free-wheeling lang. Basta tama ginagawa mo at dumedepensa ka, walang problema kay coach ‘yun,” he said.
But if the Rookie of the Year award does come, Caracut, the Finals MVP in his last season in the NCAA with the Red Cubs, said it will only be a bonus.
“Bonus na lang siguro ‘yun. Gusto ko mag-champion,” said Caracut.