A FINAL ruling on the eligibility of Ateneo guard Hubert Cani is expected to be made on Tuesday when the UAAP board meets again following the enactment of the Student-Athletes Protection Act last week.
The league’s board will tackle whether Republic Act 10676 authored by Sen. Pia Cayetano and signed into law by President Aquino applies for this season, and whether Cani can immediately play for the Blue Eagles.
Following his move from National University to Ateneo in 2014, Cani has been included in the 16-man line-up of the Blue Eagles for Season 78 when the Student-Athletes Protection Bill by the Senate and House of Representatives was passed last June.
The bill states that athletic associations should not impose residency periods for high school graduates transferring to a college, which outlaws UAAP’s two-year residency rule on such athletes.
The UAAP, however, voted in a board meeting, 5-2, that the application of the Act is retroactive, declaring Cani ineligible for Season 78.
Ateneo is also looking for other ways to be able to field Cani immediately as the Blue Eagles face Far Eastern University on Sunday, a day after the formal opening of Season 78.
“We will try to appeal again. I think what we will also try to do is kausapin ang NU na baka puwedeng i-release. Pero pupunta rin kami sa board and try it one more time,” said Ricky Palou, Ateneo's representative to the UAAP board.