A TOP Letran official has vowed to conduct an investigation into a campus bonfire celebration shortly after the Knights' conquest of the NCAA championship where San Beda banners and shirts were burned, saying such actions won't be tolerated by the school.
Viral photos of the bonfire has sparked anger online and Letran athletic moderator Fr. Vic Calvo said the school won't condone such 'improper' actions.
"We will not tolerate those kinds of actions," said Calvo, who was in Iloilo when reached by Spin.ph on Sunday. "Nasa Iloilo ako ngayon eh. Sembreak ngayon eh, walang pasok. Pero I will check on the student services, kasi sila ang naglead ng celebration eh.
"Mamaya nga, I will call them na, (ask) why ginawa nila yun," he said.
Calvo clarified that the bonfire was an impromptu celebration and was not staged by the school, which he said won't hold a campus celebration until students return from a Halloween break on Monday.
He said his specific instruction was to hold a mass after Game Three of the finals.
Still, he admitted such actions were improper.
"Hindi yun bagay eh. Pwede namang wala 'yun. Pwede namang wala yun eh. Pero siguro during that time, emotions ran high. Rivalry issue tapos nagkagulo pa after ng game, may nagbatuhan pa," he said.
"Mahirap talagang i-control eh. Pero hindi proper yun."
Calvo also revealed he intends to personally call Letran star Kevin Racal regarding his racial slur against San Beda naturalized center Ola Adeogun a day after the title-clinching Game Three victory.
The soft-spoken Letran priest said he is aware that Racal has already issued a public apology, but vowed to talk to the Knights star just the same.
"I will still talk to him and tell him that such actuations should not be made. We can feel his emotion, siguro dahil madalas sila ni Ola ang nagkakagirian, but I will tell him not to let his emotions get the better of him," he said of Racal, who will now play for the Alaska Aces in the PBA.
Meanwhile, supporters of San Beda were understandably fuming over the incidents.
San Beda supporter and merchandise provider Amis Tumang of Amazing Playground said the bonfire insult is deplorable and goes against the tenets of sportsmanship.
"Sobrang sakit sa mata nun. Imagine, sinusunog nila ang mga gamit ng San Beda. Ano ba ang ginawa namin sa kanila?" said Tumang, whose company is one of the biggest producers of Red Lions lifestyle shirts.
"Never namin ginawa sa San Beda 'yun, no matter how emotional the series went not just against Letran but sa iba pa naming mga nakalaban," added the San Beda marketing graduate.
San Bed's representative to the NCAA board, Jose Mari Lacson, also aired his thoughts.
"Hindi kami nasasaktan, kasi hindi naman kami ang gumawa ng mali. Pero naawa kami sa kanila, kasi parang hindi nila alam ginagawa nila. I cannot tell people how to react. It's important that in victory and in defeat, you should act accordingly," said Lacson.
"Hindi siguro sila sanay sa protocol na hindi dapat gawin. Pero hindi na namin pinapansin 'yun, kasi kung disente ka hindi mo gagawin yun," he added.
"We bonfire, it's just fire, with blocks. Hindi kami gumagamit ng paraphernalia ng iba. Kasi we know, it's insulting."
Asked if they will file a protest over the incident, Lacson said, "Hindi na siguro. Bahala na sila sa kung ano ang ginawa nila."
Listen to interview with Fr. Calvo: