UAAP Basketball

FEU names Denok Miranda as Tamaraws head coach, Johnny Abarrientos as consultant

JR Isaga

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FEU names Denok Miranda as Tamaraws head coach, Johnny Abarrientos as consultant

HOMEGROWN COACH. Denok Miranda is named the new head coach of the FEU Tamaraws men's basketball team

FEU Tamaraws Facebook page

FEU goes through its own backyard for its men's basketball coaching search and taps school legend Denok Miranda as head coach, with hoops icon Johnny Abarrientos as consultant

MANILA, Philippines – FEU stayed in its own backyard in its search for a new men’s basketball head coach, tapping Denok Miranda to call the shots for the Tamaraws starting Wednesday, January 18.

Joining him on the sidelines is hoops legend Johnny Abarrientos, who has been elevated from assistant coach to team consultant, per the school release.

“Known as an elite defender and leader during his time, Coach Denok is expected to instill a defensive and winning mentality with the team,” the school wrote.

Miranda and Abarrientos take over for PBA legend Olsen Racela, who parted ways with the illustrious UAAP program after the Tamaraws bottomed out to seventh place in Season 85 – their worst finish in 26 years and the first non-Final Four run since 2012.

“Of course, I’m grateful for the opportunity FEU gave me. You all know I played there in college and they gave my career a chance to blossom,” Miranda said in Filipino.

“Our culture is unlike other schools. We’re low-profile, but the pride is there. I’m excited to be a rookie coach going up against heavyweights. You know my identity as a player. It’s all hard work.”

Miranda will take over a team in flux, but still led at the moment by LJay Gonzales, Cholo Anonuevo, Xyrus Torres, and Bryan Sajonia.

The former guard gets his experience from more than a decade’s worth of playing in the PBA, with stints for Coca-Cola, Sta. Lucia, San Miguel, and TNT, among others.

Miranda is also a two-time PBA champion and a two-time UAAP champion, having won the latter in back-to-back fashion in 2003 and 2004 before missing out on the three-peat in 2005 due to graduation.

Since then, FEU has only won one more title in 2015, beating the UST Growling Tigers in a thrilling three-game Season 78 finals series. –

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