Coach thankful for second chance
After being meted a lifetime ban back in 2009 for his role in a walkout during the semifinals of a volleyball tournament during that season, veteran coach Cecil Jotojot is grateful to be given another chance to mentor the University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers.
Jotojot regained his position after his lifetime ban was reduced to five years by longtime Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy, who confirmed the development to Cebu Daily News in a brief talk yesterday.
Jotojot was tapped to replace former coach Jason Gabales, who accepted a post with Perpetual Help of the NCAA and Cignal of the Philippine Superliga. Jotojot shared that he met with Tiukinhoy earlier this month and asked pardon for his role in the controversial walkout that marred the men’s volleyball tournament in 2009.
“I’m just very happy to be back. All these years, I wasn’t really sure if I was ever going to be able to become a head coach again. I wasn’t even sure if the school would still even retain my services,” said an elated Jotojot in his native Cebuano.
It can be recalled that Jotojot along with Roderick Arenasa of the University of San Carlos (USC), and Jonathan Aves and Raul Briones of the University of the Visayas (UV) were all slapped with lifetime bans after they kept their respective teams out of the semifinals, in protest of the eligibility of then University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) player Jade Dionson.
“I never expected to be back on the bench again. Even those who got the same punishment as me aren’t with their schools anymore. I’m just thankful that USPF still gave me a job even though I was banned,” Jotojot said.
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