Natalo. Nagreklamo. Nag-back out.

You know what has been the most surprising thing in the 79th season of UAAP?

The Fighting Maroons Men’s Basketball team have won 4 games!

That’s no typo. THEY HAVE WON 4 GAMES.

That equals the total victories they had for the last two seasons. I had the Over/Under line at 2.5 when I thought the only team they would beat is UE. Speaking of UE, I had their OU line at 0.5 and even that went over (note to self: don’t make OU lines ever again).

The University of the Philippines’ UAAP season is off to a great start. The Lady Maroons have recently won both badminton and swimming competitions, the men finally showed up for this year’s basketball tournament and, with the annual Cheerdance Competition just around the corner, the UP Pep Squad will look to redeem their 3rd place finish last year.

(Somebody start the bonfire now!)

That is until they announced that they’re skipping it this year.

(Ok, put that bonfire on hold for a second)

You may have heard that the UP Pep Squad won’t participate in this year’s cheerdance competition. Why? Apparently, it’s something to do with the 2015 results.

Last year, we saw the National University achieve a three-peat, the first to do so since UP and the third team to accomplish such a feat along with University of Santo Tomas and UP (I’m far from being the best guy to ask when it comes to cheerdancing so I’ll let you be the judge).

After clearing out all the fallen bodies from all the failed NU stunts, the judges crowned the National U Pep Squad as the champs while both UST Salinggawi and UP Pep were named runner-ups. Sure enough, that decision didn’t sit well with a lot of people. It didn’t take long for UP to file a complaint regarding the scores but the organization committee turned a blind eye in the hopes that everyone will move on from this. But expecting a university like UP to back down from a fight in which they have a point (and trust me, they do) is like expecting Duterte to say nice things about America — it won’t happen.

True to their words, the UP Pep Squad officially announced their separation from the UAAP Cheerdance competition.

Anyway, I’m not going into the specifics of what the scores should have been and who should have really won because I rather not be an expert of a field that I am not that well aware of (shout out to all our friends turned political analysts on Facebook), but we need the UP Pep Squad in the Cheerdance Competition!

Without UP in the competition, it’ll be like drinking sago’t gulaman without the sago. Without UP, it’ll be like eating halo-halo without the ube (why ube and langka works so well with ice cream is beyond me). Without UP, the cheerdance competition isn’t the cheerdance competition.

It’s just not the same. But it still doesn’t justify the UP Pep Squad’s decision to back out from competing in the UAAP Cheerdance Competition this year.

Like any other game, the Cheerdance Competition will have winners and losers. Last year, NU came out on top and everyone else just missed out. Sure it was questionable, to say the least, but NU won. UST even placed 2nd and yet we didn’t hear any complaints coming from them (not that I know of). ADMU placed 8th and no complaints either! I understand the UP Pep Squad are protesting the poor judging that may or may not have cost them another championship but how does sitting out this year prove anything?

Do they also sit out next season’s competition and the season after that until the organizers admit their mistakes? And, it’s a very long shot, if the judges admit they made a mistake and apply the necessary point deductions to NU, UST (rating of 81.44) will still win the competition over UP (76.31). Will the UP Pep still continue to protest until they are named the champions of a competition that was held last year?

I imagine UP will be facing sanctions from the UAAP board as well. The organizers and association should not let this get away and rightfully so. If they fail to address this issue as early as now, there will always be the threat of universities backing out from competitions that were closely decided.

The UP Pep Squad could have done more than just pulling out to prove their point. They have used the competition either to raise awareness (remember the time they shaved their heads to promote gender equality?) or pay homage to pop stars (remember the time they dyed their hair for Madonna?). The most badass thing they could have done is make a theme by using all 3 themes that NU used to win the past 3 titles. That would have been their middle finger to the rest of the competition.

The UP Pep will be missed, but the show must go on without them. And when you think about it, halo-halo isn’t actually that bad without the ube.

– David Gamboa

One thought on “Natalo. Nagreklamo. Nag-back out.


    I respect your opinion David.
    I also am saddened with the Squad’s decision but they said it a year ago, “Kung ‘di sinagot, then UP will be out of UAAP CDC next year,” (coach Pereña)
    Dapat nilang panindigan yun.
    In the first place all they wanted was – let me borrow this line from Piolo (Starting Over Again) – “I deserve an explanation! I need an acceptable reason!”.
    They did not even want to file a protest, they were just asking for an informal dialogue to clarify if their understanding of the rules were correct.
    But since the organizers themselves advised the squad to write a formal complaint, that’s what they did.
    The complaint’s contents were very specific. But none of it was answered directly.
    So what was the point of the organizers asking to file a written formal complaint if they will not answer it properly pala??
    Reference: (…/up-s-future-in-uaap-cheerdance-…)
    The squad explained their side already (…/up-pep-squad-withdraws-from-uaap-seaso…)
    and to quote:
    “Last year was one of the most striking seasons in the history of our team. If you have been following our story since, thank you for your interest and patience. Finally, we can share the news to those who have been wondering that, regretfully, we will not be part of this season’s UAAP Cheerdance Competition. From our first request for an informal meeting, to the letter of protest advised by the organizers themselves, we have exhausted all our efforts to reach a resolution. We have repeatedly sought out the delegated individuals to no avail. And after many weeks, months, and now a year of waiting, our issues and questions remained unresolved. Reared in the institution we represent, we abide with our principles of honor and integrity, and stay true to our word of foregoing with the competition, should the same organizers be hired to handle the event again. Though you may not all agree with us, we hope that our supporters will understand our decision and remain behind us in harnessing our freedom to prioritize our principles and the welfare of our student athletes.” – UP Pep Squad.
    With what I got from that. Until those questions are answered or the organizers are replaced (or both) UP Pep will stay out of the competition.
    You are right though, “UP Pep will be missed, but the show must go on without them.”
    And again, I respect your opinion but I beg to disagree… UP PEP is not just the ube.
    and I don’t know if you can say that halo-halo ain’t bad without the ice.


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