Even the hardiest institutions have been hit hard by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the resulting quarantine protocols implemented across the country.
Colegio de San Juan de Letran, a school celebrating its 400th year, will have to scale down its athletic operations moving forward in order to continue and recover from the losses it has incurred.
In a letter penned by Letran rector and president Fr. Clarence Marquez, OP, it was recommended that the school must downsize operations, cut budgets, control cash flow, and manage limited resources in order to survive. All possible scenarios lead to cuts to the school’s athletics department.
The following will be executed immediately:
First off, Letran will send home its student-athletes for the school’s third term (June-July, 2020) to reduce dormitory and meal expenses.
Then come the first semester of the academic year 2020-2021, athletic scholarships and discounts will only be given to a maximum of 372 students. The committee will re-evaluate the scholarships given during the second semester.
Moreover, dormitory and meal expenses for student-athletes will be reduced to 25-percent of the previous allocation and will only be restricted to “economically-disadvantaged” student-athletes.
Scholarships will also no longer be given to the Juniors Basketball “Team B” and other recruits not included in the official NCAA roster.
Finally, student-athletes who have finished their NCAA eligibility but are still finishing their degrees will still have their scholarship or discounts for a period of one academic year. However, they will no longer have dorm and meal privileges.
Besides this, Letran is looking to formally withdraw from the following NCAA events, namely Seniors’ Volleyball, Seniors’ Beach Volleyball, Seniors Football, Seniors’ Swimming, Seniors’ Track and Field, Seniors’ Taekwondo, Juniors’ Track and Field, and Juniors’ Taekwondo.
Just like basketball, volleyball, swimming, and track and field are core events of the Grand Old League.
If Season 96 — which Letran will host — will either be suspended, delayed, or scaled-down, coaches of affected events will see their compensation scaled down by 50-percent. Meanwhile, uniforms, equipment, training, and team-building expenses will be “strictly and severely” limited.
On the other hand, the student-athletes are expected to be more diligent with their academics.
To close his letter, Fr. Marquez calls for understanding as the school is going through tough times.
“These are most difficult times for the Colegio,” his statement read.
“It is with a heavy heart that we are deciding on this matter. We continue to pray for the good health, safety, and well-being of all our student-athletes and coaches.”
Once the school recovers and the world stabilizes, Letran will reconsider re-entering events and recruiting more student-athletes.
“In God’s time, the Colegio looks forward to the return of our student-athletes in full strength and numbers and quality to render honor and glory to our beloved Alma Mater.”
Tiebreaker Times sought Fr. Vic Calvo’s comments regarding the matter but has yet to receive a response as of publishing.