WHEN ITS 13th season opens next month, the National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAASCU) will welcome two new members that are seen to increase the level of competition. The Rizal Technological University Blue Thunder and Polytechnic University of the Philippines Mighty Maroons carry with them winning traditions that they hope will continue in their new league.
Both RTU and PUP are expected to crowd defending champion Saint Clare College of Caloocan in the centerpiece Senior Men’s Basketball competition. The Saints finally won their first NAASCU trophy last season by sweeping the Centro Escolar University Scorpions in the best-of-three series.
Opening day is set for July 20, 2013 (Saturday) at the historic Rizal Memorial Coliseum. Other details will be announced soon.
Despite the entry of new members, the NAASCU remains an eight-school derby. STI College, the 2007 champions, opted to file for a leave this year together with the Trace College Stallions.
Completing the cast are Our Lady of Fatima University Phoenix, AMA Computer University Titans, New Era University Hunters and City University of Pasay Eagles. Centro Escolar is also the defending champion in both Junior and Women’s basketball.
Basketball will be the lone discipline during the first semester. The other disciplines – volleyball, athletics, swimming, chess, badminton, table tennis, taekwondo, billiards, street dance and cheerleading – will be disputed in the second semester.
UPDATE (June 22, 2013): The opening ceremonies of the 13th National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAASCU) has been moved to August 13, 2013 (Tuesday) in order to give way to the country’s hosting of the 27th FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship from August 1 to 11, 2013.