SINCE Spin.ph broke the news that Boycie Zamar has been axed as coach of the University of the East, the question running in the minds of most UAAP watchers is, ‘Who will replace him?’
Well, it looks like Derrick Pumaren has the inside track on the Red Warriors job.
By a mere process of deduction, the source said the veteran Pumaren already stands out from among those in the UE wishlist that also includes brother Dindo, Louie Alas, Robert Sison, Lawrence Chongson, and even UE greats Jimmy Mariano and Robert Jaworski.
In explaining the decision to part with Zamar, UE officials said they want a coach who can give the job his full, undivided attention - something Zamar apparently couldn't commit since he also has commitments as coach of Cebuana Lhuilier in the D-League and an assistant at San Miguel Beer in the PBA.
Another source bared that school officials prefer to name an alumnus to the job.
Now let’s begin trimming down the list.
Multi-titled NCAA coach Alas is a former Adamson Falcons star, Sison is a graduate of San Beda while UE former coaches Dindo Pumaren and Chongson are from La Salle.
This leaves Mariano and Derrick Pumaren as the sole options.
However, Mariano has already told Spin.ph that he is no longer interested in the job which he prefers to leave to young coaches, though he is open to accepting a consultant’s role.
That leaves out Derrick Pumaren, who, like father Pilo, played for the Red Warriors in college before winning championships as a coach with La Salle in the UAAP and with Swift in the PBA.
Except for a few consultant roles, Derrick is also unattached with any team at the moment.
“Reading between the lines, sa mga sinasabing qualifications ng UE, mukhang si Derrick na nga 'yan. Derrick can give them full commitment,” said a source.
UE management headed by executive vice president Carmelita Mateo is set to name the new UE head coach on April 1.