CEBU CITY - Southwestern University’s star Cameroonian forward Ben Mbala remains undeterred in his bid to don the green and white of the La Salle Green Archers in the UAAP even with the controversial amendments to the UAAP’s residency rules for foreign transferees.
On Tuesday, the UAAP board approved the lengthening of the residency period for foreign transferees from one to two years, pushing Mbala’s much-anticipated debut for La Salle from 2014 to 2015.
However, Mbala reiterated his desire to showcase his skills on the national stage after leading SWU to their first and only championship in the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) last year.
“It won’t change my mind,” said Mbala, who attracted interest from a lot of Manila-based teams after showcasing his skills in the last Philippine Collegiate Champions League.
"I will have to talk with La Salle officials to know more about this but the new rule changes won’t keep me from playing for the Green Archers," Mbala added.
Mbala was the centerpiece of La Salle’s recruiting spree during the offseason that also saw the Green Archers snag high school talents Babes Bollick from St. Benilde and Kib Montalbo from Bacolod.
However, five-time champion Ateneo's own buildup suffered a major blow when the new rules on high school players moving from one UAAP school to another was lengthened to two years, meaning prized target Jerie Pingoy will only be eligible to join the Eagles in 2015.