MANILA, Philippines – The NCAA Season 94 awarding ceremony was supposed to be the best moment of graduating Perpetual Altas big man Prince Eze.
He hauled in 4 awards in total to close out his career: an All-Defense Team selection, a Mythical Five award, the Defensive Player of the Year plum and most importantly, the Season 94 MVP trophy.
However, as his name was called for the fourth and final time, Lyceum fans in attendance who were waiting for the start of the NCAA Finals Game 2 against San Beda booed Eze and hoisted numerous pictures of disqualified candidate CJ Perez.
Eze fired back at the doubters of his trophy haul.
“I won the MVP. If you think you are better, come and get it,” he said. “CJ is MVP last season, but I could’ve been MVP last season but I didn’t get to the Final Four. I had to work harder.”
Perez was supposed to be the MVP runner-up with a 58.28 player all-around value (PAV) but his suspension from Game 1 of the Finals disqualified him from all award races, per NCAA rules.
With or without Perez in the races, Eze is still the MVP with a 61.39 PAV.
Eze was the two-way rallying force behind Perpetual’s charge to the Final Four, finishing with monster averages of 17.9 points, 16.3 rebounds and 3.3 blocks.
However, the Altas ran straight into the walls of the San Beda dynasty, which eliminated them en route to the NCAA Finals.
“I mean life is not fair. Some people get what they don’t deserve,” he continued. “We have to deal with what we have. What our coach keeps on telling me, no excuses. You have to get something from what you have.”
“It’s here now,” he said as he picked his 4 trophies one by one, looking for the MVP award.
If Eze had his way, he would have wanted Perez to still be in the race with him.
“If you want it more, you have to work for it,” he said. “I wish CJ was here with me. He’s a great player and he’s hard for me to guard. He really put his team on his back.”
Amid the positive end to his NCAA career, Eze only had one regret.
“Last season. I wish I skipped last season” he quickly answered. “I wish I skipped last season and played from this season to next season.”
Clearly, the competitive Eze is still raring to legitimize his stand as the league’s best, even though he already is. – Rappler.com