UNIVERSITY of the Philippines team manager Dan Palami said he has recommended that the Maroons head-coaching job be 'virtually vacated' to begin the process of putting in a program to revive the long-suffering UAAP minnows.
“We already sent a recommendation for the school to open the postion (of head coach),” said Palami, who has called for a 'top to bottom’ revamp of the team after the Maroons endured another lackluster campaign in the college league in his first season as manager.
Although Rey Madrid is still officially the UP coach, Palami said he wants the school to open the head-coaching position so applicants along with the incumbent coach can present programs for a team that won just one of 14 games this season - and 10 of 102 matches over the past eight years.
That, the 44-year-old businessman-sportsman said, is the only way the Maroons can move forward.
“The coaching change is not up to me. I just make the recommendation. We wanted it open so Rey can submit his program, as well as some other coaches, who could present or offer their own programs,” said Palami, who is credited for the rise of the Philippine Azkals.
“That’s the only way UP can get back to winning form.”
Asked if Madrid is on the way out, Palami said: “Hindi naman, we just want to do a selection. Virtually vacate, yun siguro ang magandang term. We want others to submit their programs then we can evaluate properly.”
Palami, however, gave a pointed response when asked if Madrid deserves to stay.
“I always go by the results, you have a 1-13 result. If you feel that it is good enough, then you continue. Pero if you think maybe somebody else can offer a better program… atleast you give others a chance,” he said.
On Madrid's program, Palami said, “Ano yung ipagpapatuloy? I think the question now is not, ‘Who should be coaching?’ but rather: ‘What kind of coach and program do UP need?’ Wala kasi akong nakikitang program.
“Kasi that way, we can be held accountable. Sa ngayon kasi walang sinusunod na program eh,” he added.
Palami made it clear he is not out to pick a fight with school officials, acknowledging that the decision on the coaching position rests entirely on the dean of the College of Human Kinetics and the chancellor.
“Hindi naman kami makikialam sa coaching decision. Dun lang mag ka-clash yan like the previous years, if I am coming in with a coach in mind. Kami pinipilit naming na magka-programa and to choose the coach who can help the program,” he said.
The UP manager said he is only out to put a program in place so other supporters can come in.
“Nakakahiya kasi sa mga tumutulong kung wala man lang tayong programa na maipapakita. Walang direksyon ang UP na maipapakita,” he said.
“Kasi ang problema dito is, what happens to those who wants to support? It’s our responsibility to them na ipakita sa kanila na may ginagawa tayo para maayos yung programa,” he said.
Here's a podcast of full interview with Dan Palami: