Source: Manila Bulletin
MANILA, Philippines — Ateneo’s multi-titled mentor Norman Black is set to be named head coach of the national team in next year’s Southeast Asian Games in Indonesia.
A ranking official of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) said the 52-year-old Black was the top choice from a short list of coaches because of his achievements, particularly the past five years with the Blue Eagles in the UAAP.
“He will be named as coach of the national team,” said the source who asked not to be named as the 73rd UAAP best-of-three Finals is ongoing, which the reigning two-time champion Ateneo is currently leading opposite Far Eastern University, 1-0, after winning Game 1 (72-49) over the weekend.
SBP executive director Noli Eala confirmed that Black, who won numerous titles in the PBA and considered as one of the greatest imports ever to have played in Asia’s first play-for-pay league, is one of the top candidates with FEU coach Glenn Capacio.
“We’re not going to make any announcement until after the collegiate season. But we’re leaning on either Norman Black or Glenn Capacio depending on the outcome of the UAAP Finals,” said Eala.
However, the same source mentioned that Capacio has already declined the job and instead, offered support as part of the coaching staff.
According to Eala, he believes that Black is interested, but will need clearance from the Ateneo management should he be the one appointed for the post.
Eala also pointed to Black’s coaching experience, including a ‘Grand Slam’ championship he won with with San Miguel Beer in 1989, and a coaching stint with the national team during the 1994 Asian Games in Hiroshima, Japan.
That team, composed of the core of All-Filipino champion SMB led by Allan Caidic and reinforced by Alvin Patrimonio, as well as amateur standouts like Marlou Aquino and Kenneth Duremdes, lost in the bronze medal game against Japan.
Black is the third winningest coach in the 36-year history of the PBA with 10 championships, 9 with SMB and one with Sta. Lucia Realty.
The national team hasn’t lost the SEA Games basketball gold since 1991, defending its title seven straight times. The last RP team to win it came in 2007 during the Nakhonratchasima Games where the Harbour Centre backed Nationals – coached by Junel Baculi – won games by an average winning margin of 43.0 points.
The game was not included in the 2009 Laos Games. (Tempo Sports)