Friday, June 28, 2013

Fair Play: Basketball gets boost, what about others?

SO APPARENTLY, despite a pre-season tournament and a season that starts a month early than the rest of the other events, there is a “glaring need” for more games in Cesafi basketball.

So this year, there will be a single round elimination, a quarter final round and a double round robin semifinal round. Which means the season would be longer than usual.

With the rivalry of powerhouse University of the Visayas and Southwestern University getting another chapter, that longer season won’t really be such a bad thing.

But I hope the other sports take cue from that and also implement changes so they’ll have more games this season. Two of the more popular “other sports”--the term used by Cesafi to lump non-basketball events--are volleyball and football and last season’s matches where well-attended. These events follow a straight elimination-semifinal-final format and I hope this year, especially, for football there will be major changes.

One coach told me that he agrees there are too few games in Cesafi football--five if you reach the final--and for a school that maintains a 20-team roster, that isn’t a nice return of investment. His proposal? Double-round robin elimination with the top two teams making the finals since going through a semifinal with a five-team tournament means a team can afford to take it easy in some matches.

Of course, more games mean playdates and I believe that problem can be easily solved by starting the other events together with basketball, or a day after basketball starts. Why the customary one-month delay, I really don’t know.

Consider this curious fact, the Cesafi football finals between the University of San Carlos and the University of San Jose-Recoletos, attended by Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy, was the second most-watched and second noisest football match in Cebu last year. Second only to Singapore vs. Philippines. I think there were more people in that Cesafi finals than there were in the final match of the AFC President’s Cup early this year.

Imagine that.

This year, I’m pretty sure the fans will troop to the games.

I just hope there will be a lot of games. After 13 years, Cesafi football deserves some changes don’t you think?

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