IS National University the biggest threat in La Salle's bid for the UAAP Season 79 crown?
The Bulldogs were the squad most coaches mentioned as the best bet to take the number two spot, in particular, and pose a threat to the preseason favorites Green Archers this season.
In fact, the Bulldogs proved they can play against the best after defeating the Green Archers in a tune-up game in the lead-up to the new UAAP season.
But NU coach Eric Altamirano played down the tag as the team that could quash La Salle’s title hopes.
“Obviously, the team to beat talaga ang La Salle. I think everyone will agree. It’s a two-group thing. It’s La Salle and the rest. We are all in the same boat,” said Altamirano.
The Bulldogs have an intact core, not only from last year's squad, but also from its Team B roster that has been together for a few years already.
Altamirano said that while he believes that NU can beat anybody, including La Salle, this season, the question for the Bulldogs will be consistency.
“Pare-pareho lang ‘yan. That’s the characteristic of one team ‘yung inconsistency. We are trying to work on our consistency. Of course, we are capable of beating top teams but the question is how consistent are we in doing the same thing?,” said Altamirano.
Altamirano, the longest tenured coach in the UAAP, said the coaching changes most of the teams underwent before the season could also be a challenge to the Bulldogs.
“Personally, very challenging kasi maraming new faces, new players, new coaches. ‘Yung mga pumalit na coaches, magagaling, well-accomplished, and multi-titled. Kailangan din naming mag-adjust kasi bagong sistema,” said Altamirano.