NATIONAL University will have to make a strong impression early as it will perform second in the UAAP Season 84 Cheerdance Competition this Sunday.
UAAP Cheerdance order
It's a triumphant return for the midseason extravaganza after three long years with the NU Pep Squad aiming for a three-peat after winning six of the last seven competitions.
Ateneo Blue Eagles will raise the curtains on Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena, followed by NU and eight-time champions UP Pep Squad.
FEU Cheering Squad, which is looking for its first title since 2009 after finishing runner-up in the last two competitions, will be the fourth to take the stage.
Adamson Pep Squad, which was the last team outside of NU to win the crown back in 2017, will be at fifth followed by the DLSU Animo Squad and UE Pep Squad.
UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe, which won eight championships in the past but last reigned in 2006, will perform last.
Changes are aplenty for this year's event with routines limited to just three minutes from six, and the group only having 15 members on the floor from the previous 25.
"Hindi ito yung normal CDC. When the Board decided to bring back CDC, we're still in Alert Level II or III. At that time, we're already looking at having the cheerdance without a crowd," said UAAP president Nonong Calanog, taking into account the preparations that the pep squads had to undergo before the event.
"The cheerdance coaches come up with their routines six months before. It's not easy to say na if things get better, we'll bring it back to normal."
He furthered: "Things are a little better now, but we had to contend with the uncertainty. We didnt know what will happen this time, but we were ready with whatever decisions we made at that time. We just went on with the safest way of conducting the CDC."
Champions of this year's competition will take home the P50,000 cash prize, with the second placer at P30,000, and third placer at P20,000.
Unlike in the past seasons, though, there won't be any group stunts competition for the first time since 2010.