Returning Renzo Subido believes he’s ready to lead UST
MANILA, Philippines – When the UST Growling Tigers open their first season under head coach Aldin Ayo against National U on Saturday, September 8, it will also mark the return of spitfire guard Renzo Subido.
A former La Salle Zobel standout, Subido sat out last year’s UAAP season in order to improve his game by joining the PBA D-League, where he starred for Marinerong Pilipino.
But Subido returns to a Tigers team far different from the one he left. With 9 rookies lined up, UST will need the fourth-year Subido to act as leader to the young recruits, just like the way Kevin Ferrer, Ed Daquioag, and Louie Vigil did for him in the past.
“I’m always up for the challenge. I’ve gone through a lot of experiences. I’ve played against veteran players. I’ve played with veteran players. With all the experience I had, I think I’m ready to lead this team. Also at the same time, [I’m] also learning from the rookies,” he told Rappler.
Subido also said skipping the UAAP in 2017 helped him become a better player, but not just in terms of his abilities on the basketball court.
“I think it’s more of the experience I had that one year that I sat out last season. That was really a big thing for me, especially honing my skills. Aside from [that], it was more of the experiences of the mental part – how to look at the game, how to prepare for every game.”
UST’s coaching staff raves about Subido’s work ethic and his ability to lead his teammates.
“Iba yung leadership ni Renzo,” said assistant coach Bonnie Garcia. "Yung time and score, when the game is on the line, siya yun eh – yung stabilizer on the court, directing traffic on the court, si Renzo ang binibigay sa amin.”
(Renzo’s leadership is different. When the game is on the line, he’s the man – the stabilizer on the court, directing traffic on the court.)
After showing glimpses of his skills in his first two seasons, Subido stood out in his junior campaign in 2016 with a 26-point outburst against UE. Although UST was one the worst team in the UAAP that year, Subido’s potential gave fans hope for the future.
Under Ayo, who’s known for getting the best out of his combo guards, Subido should shine and take his game to another level.
“Coach Aldin is a great coach. I also had good coaches, but coach Aldin is the only one who I think gave me the chance to showcase my skills. Not only me. He gives everyone the chance to play their game,” he said.
When asked about the difference in UST’s culture between Ayo’s regime and his past coaches, Subido talked about equality within the ranks.
“I think it’s more of everyone having equal chances. I appreciate coach Aldin because he gives everyone an equal chance, even if you’re a veteran or rookie. For him, he sees everyone as equal.”
Although the Tigers would love to make it back to the Final Four this season, they know it will be a tough process. Aside from being young, UST has to deal with much improved UAAP opponents.
That’s part of the reason why the team’s slogan this year is “Hail Mary.”
“We don’t look at the results yet. For us, we just want to play our best every game. We want to play hard every game and we just want to compete,” said Subido.
“Our goal is to get back on top, but we all know that it’s not going to be that easy, that’s why we’ve been practicing 4-5 hours every day. During the break we’ve been practicing twice a day, so we all know it’s not going to be easy but that’s our goal – to get back on top.” – Rappler.com