DERRICK Pumaren makes his University of the East coaching against the very same team he steered to two UAAP men’s basketball title right on opening day of the FilOil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup.
The defending champions Red Warriors battle reigning UAAP title holder La Salle Green Archers in the main game of the seniors hostilities of the premier preseason tournament on April 26 at The Arena in San Juan.
Game time is at 4 p.m.
The UE-La Salle tussle highlights the quadruple header kicking off the collegiate division of the league, according to the initial schedule released by organizers.
Prior to becoming the Warriors’ head coach, Pumaren called the shots for the Archers, whom he guided to back-to-back championships in 1989 and 1990.
Following his stint in the college ranks, Pumaren turned to PBA coaching and handled teams such as the RFM franchise, Purefoods, and Talk `N Text.
He took over from Boycie Zamar as UE head coach only last week.
Two of Pumaren’s brothers, Fran and Dindo, also became head coaches of La Salle years after he left the Taft-based school.
Franz led the Archers to five UAAP championships, including four straight from 1998-2001, during his 11-year stay with his alma mater from 1998 to 2009.
Dindo coached La Salle in 2010. He is now part of brother Derrick’s coaching staff after once serving as UE head coach from 2002 to 2008.
Equally interestingis the clash between defending four-time NCAA champion San Beda against two-time runner-up Letran set at 2 p.m.
The Red Lions, bannered by Ola Adeogun and Baser Amer, will plunge into action immediately after a preseason training in Lithuania. They will be taking on a Knights side that will be playing its first game without top player Raymund Almazan, now with Rain or Shine in the PBA.
In other games, San Sebastian faces University of the Philippines at 9:30 a.m., while Far Eastern University takes on Mapua at 11:15 a.m.
The preseason tournament actually begins on April 23 with three women’s and two juniors games also scheduled after two days (April 25).