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    Olsen Racela says faster pace, stingier defense key for FEU to contend vs top teams in Season 80

    Sep 8, 2017
    Olsen Racela is excited to go up against top teams in his first stint as FEU coach. Jaime Campos

    A Racela may remain at the helm of Far Eastern University but new head coach Olsen takes over his brother, promising the same competitive Tamaraws team, with a few surprises in store for UAAP Season 80.

    After his brother Nash moved to the PBA with TNT following a 2015 UAAP title run, Olsen was tapped to lead the Tamaraws and he said the transition has been seamless even as he added some changes in their system.

    "Hindi naman ganun kalaki ang pagbabago. I still run the same system. Of course, may dinagdag ako na sa sarili ko. Basically, this team likes the dribble drive, 'yun pa rin ginagawa namin, dinagdagan ko ng deliberate type of offense. I think we've also improved defensively," said Racela.

    Racela has taken on a few tweaks based on his roster as FEU will feature a smaller team for the season, after the departure of top big men Raymar Jose and Steve Holmqvist. Another key player in Monbert Arong has also completed his UAAP playing years

    Still, the new FEU coach sees an advantage in his first year with the smaller but quicker Tamaraws.

    "As you can see, we are a much smaller team this year. Five guys from our Team B are mostly guards. We will be a quicker team," said Racela.

    Last year, FEU finished third in the elimination round with a 9-5 win-loss record but came one-point shy of pulling an upset when the Tamaraws bowed to Ateneo, 69-68, in the rubber match.

    Racela still has Prince Orizu and Richard Escoto for inside presence. Arvin Tolentino and Hubert Cani, meanwhile, are looking for a new beginning with FEU in their first season with a new school in the UAAP after transferring from Ateneo.

    Continue reading below ↓

    RJ Ramirez, one of the FEU players from Team B, will also be one of the key contributors for the Tamaraws in his first year with the UAAP squad.

    Being new to the collegiate scene, Racela admitted it will be a learning experience for him as he handles FEU. But he’s not backing down from the challenge.

    "We are excited to go up against the top teams. I'm hoping and expecting to learn a lot," said Racela.

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    Olsen Racela is excited to go up against top teams in his first stint as FEU coach. Jaime Campos
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