PBA great Jojo Lastimosa has been seen lately watching games involving Far Eastern University in the UAAP men's basketball tournament. He was even seen on Sunday wearing an FEU shirt while the Tamaraws played the Ateneo Blue Eagles.
So what is he doing with the Tamaraws?
FEU coach Nash Racela revealed Lastimosa is indeed involved in the team and is helping out in the development of players from the kids all the way to the school's seniors team.
“More on player development siya,” Racela explained. “He is involved in the whole FEU program. Mga younger kids, high school, and seniors."
Racela clarified that Lastimosa is not officially part of the FEU coaching staff.
“He is not officially part of the coaching (staff). But he goes to our practices, tinuturuan din niya ‘yung mga bata,” said Racela.
Lastimosa was named one of the 25 Greatest PBA Players of the league's first 25 years after an outstanding career with Purefoods and an Alaska team that won a league grand slam in 1996.
After being part of Alaska's coaching staff for a long time, Lastimosa has also been recently appointed as part of the coaching staff of PBA newcomer NLEX.
Incidentally, a number of Lastimosa's former teammates in those multi-titled Alaska teams are now in the UAAP.
Bong Hawkins is currently helping the coaching staff of the University of the Philippines led by head mentor Rey Madrid, whose staff also includes former Alaska stalwart Edward ‘Poch’ Juinio.
At FEU alone, Johnny Abarrientos serves as one of Racela’s coaching deputies.
Racela said the experience of Lastimosa is definitely a great asset for the Tamaraws, who already have Abarrientos and another former pro in Gilbert Lao as part of the coaching staff.
“’Yung mga beteranong ganyan, especially we want to help the players mentally, malaking bagay si Jolas sa kanila along with Johnny and Gilbert,” said Racela.