Recruitment the key as Pido Jarencio plots UST Tigers revival
BACK when he first became the head coach of University of Santo Tomas, Pido Jarencio led the Growling Tigers to the 2006 UAAP championship.
Jarencio though is tempering expectations in his second stint with the Tigers, a team that has spent most of the past seasons at the bottom of the UAAP race.
“Siyempre happy na nakabalik ako sa UST, ‘yung alma mater. Maraming tatrabahuin. Maraming aayusin sa team,” said Jarencio days after he was appointed head coach of UST, replacing Bal David.
Jarencio made his return to the Tigers nearly 10 years since leaving to coach GlobalPort (now NorthPort) and following his appointment, he has wasted no time overseeing the team’s buildup in the preseason.
UST is coming off a disappointing Season 85 campaign where the Growling Tigers lost all but one game. The Growling Tigers last reached the finals in 2020 under coach Aldin Ayo, but the program fell into hard times following the exodus of players in the wake of the so-called ‘Sorsogon bubble’ at the height of the pandemic.
Santo Tomas has not returned to the Final Four since.
The former Glowing Goldies star during the 1980s said he will do his best to beef up the team in the lead-up to Season 86, knowing how difficult the competition will be with defending champion Ateneo as one of the contenders.
Recruitment will definitely be one of the keys in reviving the UST program.
“Basta magpe-prepare kami. Tignan natin kung saan tayo pupunta. Mahirap mag-predict dahil alam naman natin ang sitwasyon. Talagang recruitment at training ‘yan ang pinaka-importante ngayon,” said Jarencio, who became known for his ‘Puso. Pride. Palaban’ mantra during his first coaching foray with UST.
Jarencio looks forward to once again working with the UST community.
“Happy siyempre. Trabaho ‘to. At the same time, alma mater. Sobrang happy na makapag-serve uli sa eskwelahan and at the same time, sa UST community. Na-miss ko rin sila,” said Jarencio.