Perasol on game ban: 'We need to rise above this adversity'
MANILA, Philippines – As the University of the Philippines (UP) tries to do without head coach Bo Perasol at the start of the UAAP Season 82 men's basketball second round, the suspended mentor believes his Fighting Maroons can cope well without him at the sidelines.
"We need to rise above this adversity," Perasol told Rappler in a text message. "I'm confident with their abilities to adjust."
UAAP officials deemed that Perasol committed "continuous flagrant acts of aggression" toward a game official despite being restrained repeatedly by the UP team members.
The Maroons mentor – who found the suspension "too much" – filed an appeal within the prescriped 48 hours after the league released the memo on his suspension last Tuesday, October 1 at 2 pm.
UAAP Season 81 MVP Bright Akhuetie – who backed up his coach's actions by calling the officiating "shitty" – felt that Perasol's absence contributed to the team's blowout loss to the defending champions.
As Perasol waits for the decision on his appeal, he hopes the Fighting Maroons get to keep hold of the No. 2 spot even without him.
"We're hoping, praying [that the appeal will be heeded]. We're preparing, so that we can make the right adjustments," added Perasol, who led UP to a breakthrough Finals appearance after 32 years last season.
Perasol got ejected at the 6:23 mark of the 3rd quarter tussle between Ateneo and UP after running toward referee Jaime Rivano with a closed fist, vehemently contesting a non-call on Ateneo's Angelo Kouame for blocking the layup attempt of Jerson Prado of UP.
The embattled coach, though, alleged that several wrong calls triggered his outrage, including the technical foul slapped on Akhuetie where Rivano ran after the UAAP Season 81 MVP all the way to the other end of the court to signal the foul.
After the game, Perasol apologized in front of reporters and even wrote a letter calling for a united UP community. (READ: Perasol calls for UP unity, sets self-ultimatum for Season 82)
If the league denies Perasol's appeal, the Maroons mentor will sit out UP's games against Far Eastern University (October 6), University of the East (October 12), and University of Santo Tomas (October 16). – Rappler.com