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MANILA, Philippines — Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin said UAAP game officials have been put under an “inordinate” amount of pressure amid officiating complaints from other teams in recent games.
Baldwin called the public criticism of the league officiating a “shameful” act, minutes after his Blue Eagles downed the UE Red Warriors, 80-74, to inch closer to a men’s basketball semifinal berth.
“On behalf of, and I know that that the UAAP doesn’t need me to speak for it, but I’m going to anyway, on behalf of the UAAP, I am embarrassed for some of the people in our family of this UAAP, exerting the kind of pressure that they did on the referees and on the commissioner’s office,” said Baldwin on Wednesday, November 15.
“I think it’s shameful. I think you all know exactly what I mean,” he added.
Baldwin’s comment came after separate incidents involving Adamson and University of the East.
UAAP | WATCH:— Rappler Sports (@RapplerSports) November 15, 2023
Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin launches a scathing attack over a “member of the UAAP family” who called into question the officiating in some games.#UAAPSeason86 pic.twitter.com/ankXMwBW0S
Adamson coach Nash Racela lashed out at the league officiating following his Soaring Falcons’ crucial 62-58 loss to defending champion Ateneo last Sunday, November 12.
Racela then got slapped by the league with a “stern reprimand” as he alleged that the UAAP wanted Ateneo to make the Final Four.
In a letter sent to the UAAP commissioner’s office on Tuesday, November 14, Racela said he sees no reason to apologize for what said, but regrets dragging the league in his rant, saying there was “no malice intended and there was no intention to cast doubt on the integrity of the league.”
UE president Dr. Zosimo Battad, meanwhile, resigned as chairman of the UAAP Board of Trustees on Wednesday, November 15, following the suspension of Red Warriors standout Precious Momowei.
The Warriors had appealed for a review of the one-game ban, which the league issued as Momowei incurred his second unsportsmanlike foul of the season.
“We showed them the video that yes there was contact, there was a foul, but it was not enough to cause a suspension,” said UE coach Jack Santiago, adding it’s also “unfair” for Momowei, the Rookie of the Year frontrunner.
Baldwin said comments on the officiating could be detrimental to the sport.
“They are immediately my number one enemy,” said Baldwin.
“This game has given every single one of us in the sport way, way more than we have given back to it,” he continued.
“And I think it is shameful when people bring the game into disrepute and I’ll leave it at that.” — Rappler.com