By: JONAS PANERIO July 10,2018 - 09:39 PM

Student-athletes who have played in PBA
D-League now allowed to compete in Cesafi

A major revision in the rules of the Cesafi for this season include allowing student-athletes who have played in the PBA D-League to play here, provided that they had played for a school-based team.

Cebu Daily News was able to obtain a copy of the “Major Rules Revision for CESAFI 2018” that was approved by the league’s Board of Trustees during a meeting in May. The said rules were discussed during a meeting with coaches of the different member schools yesterday at the Cebu Coliseum.

One of the revised rules tackled was the eligibility of players that had competed in the PBA D-League. And according to amendments that were made, the new rule now states that “A student-athlete who had played for a school-based team in the PBA D-League, and later joins a CESAFI team, is eligible to play in the CESAFI. The CESAFI will coordinate with the PBA with regard to the recognized school-based teams in the PBA D-League.”


Previously, the Cesafi had been adamant about disallowing student-athletes who had played in the D-League from playing in the Cesafi.

Among those affected by this rule were power forward Criz Dumapig, formerly of Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma, back in 2012, and Joel Lee Yu, a guard from Far Eastern University (FEU), who had wanted to play for SWU in 2017 but was also denied.

Informed of this, Lee Yu, who is now finishing his degree in FEU, couldn’t help but feel frustrated that he wasn’t able to benefit from this development.

“I really wanted to play but was told that it just isn’t possible even though I played for a school-based team. And now, I was shocked to find out about these changes,” said Lee Yu, who previously played for the University of San Carlos (USC) in high school before transferring to FEU.

Nevertheless, Lee Yu said he’s happy that changes have been made as this would open up opportunities for a lot of players who aren’t being given playing time or exposure in Manila.

“If they want to come to Cebu and play, they should grab the opportunity rather than waste their talent and playing eligibility in Manila. They should probably accept the reality that every year, there are good players coming in, either from abroad or from high school, that might keep them from getting playing time or even a spot on the team.”

The very first player to benefit from this change is Paul Galinato of the University of Cebu (UC). The left-handed guard had played for Centro Escolar University in the D-League. He said that he’s thankful for this change as it offers him a chance at a new beginning.

“The good about this rule is that it gives us players another chance to play on other collegiate teams that will give us new beginnings and opportunities.”

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TAGS: allowed, came, Cesafi, change, compete, d-league, PBA, Student-athletes

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