Where To, Nico?

Among this year’s “Big 3”, or the top 3 high school basketball players who are graduating next year, it seems that NICO SALVA is the only one still without a clear college team to go to. Though nothing is final yet until they go out & enroll in a school, it seems the other 2 top prospects, RYAN BUENAFE & JUSTIN CHUA, have a very good chance of playing for the Ateneo De Manila University (ADMU) college basketball team.

Nico Salva’s Choices are a bit complicated as they are now, & here is some of them:

* SBC Red Lions
– Will be competing for playing time w/ the now established star, Ogie Menor at no. 3
– SBC also is fully loaded on almost all positions, likelyhood of establishing a name for himself quickly on his rookie year will be bleak
– However, if he can wait no more than 2 years (Ogie will graduate in 2009), then he will have a serious crack of becoming one of the team’s main men for the next three years after that (from 2010 to 2012)
– Will likely see at least one Championship finals at SBC. Could be more, & even win a championship or two if he lives up to the hype

* ADMU Blue Eagles
– Will likely be competing for playing time w/ Ryan Buenafe (assuming Buenafe enrolls at ADMU) at no. 3, though Buenafe could also move to 2
– The “MVP” (“Manny V. Panglinan”) connection between SBC & ADMU (Salva played his senior year w/ the SBC high school team) could, though, mean that Salva will have an “easier” transition from SBC to ADMU
– Would be nice to see him team up w/ Buenafe & Chua, though, to what perhaps could be the most distinguished rookie batch in decades. A final 4 appearance, then, or even UAAP championship perhaps?

* DLSU Green Archers
– Possible bad blood w/ DLSU as he was a former member of DLSU’s Jrs. team, before he transferred to the SBC Red Cubs
– But will likely find ample playing time there if he pushes thru, perhaps helping lead DLSU to another title

* To any other NCAA School
– Will likely have to sit out a year of residency as I don’t think SBC will allow him to transfer to an NCAA school without sitting out a year of residency

* UP Maroons
– Academically prestigious school who definitely will see him as a Saviour, what w/ UP losing all of its games last year
– But current politicking w/ the Coaching staff has so far been very, very ugly, & could be a major distraction for the players & new coach
– “Perks” will likely be also limited
– If Burke ends up there also, they could team up for a very formidable duo in the UAAP

* UST Tigers
– Combining w/ Jervy & Mirza, could help lead the Tigers to a Championship title
– But again, “perks” could be limited, at least not like if he transferred to DLSU

* To any other UAAP team
– Could be vital cog w/ any of the other UAAP teams, but again, he will have to sacrifice possible “perks”. Plus championship appearance w/ any of them could be unlikely


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