One of the Philippines’ biggest sports patrons has passed away.
Eduardo Cojuangco Jr (June 10, 1935-June 16, 2020), known to many as Danding, has passed away due to heart failure and pneumonia, Wednesday.
He was 85.
He is best known to Filipino sports fans as the godfather who funded the Northern Cement basketball team that served as the national program during the 1980s.
Under the tutelage of the legendary American coach Ron Jacobs, and with players such as Hector Calma, Chip Engelland and Allan Caidic across different eras, the ballclub won the 1981 and 1985 Jones Cup, the 1985 PBA Reinforced Conference, the 1981 and 1985 SEA Games, 1982 ABC Juniors Championship and the 1985 ABC Championship.
As the chairman and CEO of San Miguel Corporation, Cojuangco continued to enjoy much success in the PBA until this day.
Notable achievements include the San Miguel Beermen’s 1989 Grand Slam under coach Norman Black; and the San Mig Coffee Mixers’ 2014 Grand Slam under coach Tim Cone; as well as SMB’s five-championship run in the Philippine Cup from 2014 to 2019.
He was a proud alumnus of De La Salle University, and he was the main booster of the DLSU Men’s Basketball Team from 2012 until 2019.
His reign yielded championships in 2013 with coach Juno Sauler, and 2016 with coach Aldin Ayo alongside a finals appearance in 2017. During his time, the likes of Jeron Teng, Jason Perkins, and Ben Mbala contributed heavily to the Green and White cause.
Cojuangco was also active in Philippine politics, mainly serving as the leader of the Nationalist People’s Coalition party.
He also ran for president back in 1992 and was named ambassador to the United States at some point in his career.