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Pat Aquino honored to be part of alma mater UP’s shortlist

Just like everyone else, University of the Philippines product and National University head coach Patrick Aquino felt surprised on Wednesday evening after Tiebreaker Times broke the news that Bo Perasol had resigned from his post as Fighting Maroons head coach.

“Yes, I’m surprised of course. Definitely,” Aquino told Sports Bytes.

What surprised him more was his inclusion on the school’s shortlist of potential replacements for Perasol.

Tiebreaker Times also reported an hour later that he and Goldwin Monteverde were being considered by the school.

But of course, the news of Perasol leaving was the only thing on his mind on Wednesday.

“Yes. I’m surprised of course, definitely. I’m not considering myself to be (part) sa shortlist nila. I’m happy and honored na kinoconsider nila ako to become the next head coach of the UP Basketball Team. I was surprised kagabi that when the articles come out that Coach Bo is resigning, then I was sobrang tired na rin at patulog na rin ako. Because of sobrang daming messages, mga tanong on what is happening, I wasn’t able to sleep. And until this morning, everybody still asking what is happening,” he recalled.

“Of course, I don’t know, I’m just surprised also with what happened to Coach Bo. Sa group nga namin mag-teateammates nagtatanong din. So we’re just hopeful that Coach Bo will continue with what he’s doing good, wished him the best in all the future endeavors na gagawin niya.”

Aquino though is as maroon as one can get.

The 50-year-old tactician graduated from UPIS in 1988. He then played for the Fighting Maroons from 1989-1993 while earning a degree in tourism.

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Exactly 10 years after leaving Diliman, he returned to UP as head coach of the Junior Maroons. From 2004-2007, UPIS made four Final Fours — including a Finals appearance in 2006.

He would then move to NU in 2012 where he steered the Lady Bulldogs to six-straight tiaras and a 96-0 record.

Despite all his accolades, Aquino knows that it will be hard to follow in the footsteps of Perasol if ever he gets to be the chosen one to be the Fighting Maroons’ next head caoch.

“I’m just happy na talagang kino-consider nila ako. Siyempre, it’s a great honor coaching UP, especially it’s my alma mater from kinder hanggang college.

“Excited if ever na mapili tayo but it’s still a long process. Basta nandito lang ako if whatever happens and hopefully they’ll pick the best for the UP. Ang hirap i-follow ang ginagawa ni Coach Bo. It’s gonna be hard whoever’s the next coach of UP,” he continued.

“So hopefully, kung sino man yung head coach, sana magpapatuloy yung ginawa ni Coach Bo.”

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