SAN Beda men’s basketball team coach Boyet Fernandez insisted Andre Paras is not a shoo-in as far as the Red Lions’ roster for Season 91 of the NCAA is concerned despite his decision to enroll at the Mendiola-based school.
Fernandez confirmed on Thursday the 18-year-old Paras has transferred from University of the Philippines to the Lions’ den, but is not making any promises to the son of San Beda assistant coach and PBA great Benjie Paras.
“He still has to earn his slot,” Fernandez told Spin.ph, referring to the former Maroon, who has started his one-year residency at SBC by suiting up for the Team B of the Lions. “No promises, kasi ayaw ko maging kampante mga players ko. I always want them to be on top of their games.”
“Even Baser (Amer) and Ola (Adeogun are not assured of slots),” the San Beda mentor admitted. “Basta kung sino deserving, sila ang papasok sa lineup. Malaking plus rin ang academics.”
Amer and Adeogun, both of whom happen to be dean’s listers, however, are assured of spots in the upcoming Season 90 as they banner the Lions’ quest for a fifth straight title.
But Fernandez was quick to add the 6-foot-3 Paras will be a huge addition to a San Beda side that will see the departure of starting center Kyle Pascual next season.
“Pag nag-graduate mga bigs ko, wala na akong malaki. Hindi naman napupunta sa amin yung mga prized freshmen (na big men),” Fernandez said candidly. “So feeling ko, at least makakatulong si Andre.”
Fernandez actually made a run at Paras after he graduated from La Salle Greenhills, before the big man decided to go to UP and take up a Film course.
Paras, who dabbles in show business and recently starred in the blockbuster movie, 'Diary Ng Panget,' has shifted to marketing at SBC.
“He wanted to transfer, so we welcomed him with open arms,” Fernandez said. “Actually before he decided to go to UP, we courted him kasi coach Benjie is part of the coaching staff.”
“But I asked him to make sure he settled all his matters with UP kasi ayaw ko magalit sila sa akin,” added Fernandez, a former UP coach.