ALJAMAL AND THE RED LIONS FACE TOUGH WATERS

The biggest sports news of the hour was the battle against San Beda and JRU last Wednesday in the controversy ridden NCAA Basketball Tournament at the Arena in San Juan City.

The MANCOM earlier ruled to disqualify Aljamal from the rest of the tournament for reported failure of seeking permission from the MANCOM that he was joining the draft. Here is the body of the letter, served on Fr. Paul de Vera, OSB, the athletics moderator of San Beda College on 21 August 2007.

                          NATIONAL COLLEGIATE ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION
                                             Host School: Jose Rizal University

For:          Fr. Paul de Vera
                  San Beda College Sports Director

FROM:    EFREN JOSE Y. SUPAN
                 83rd NCAA Chairman

Date:       August 8, 2007
__________________________________________________ ____________

               Greetings from the Mancom!

               After presentation of facts and deliberations, Mancom arrived unanimously at a decision that the following
               infractions have been committed by Mr. Youseff (sic) Aljamal:

                      1. No permission from NCAA Mancom prior to draft application.
                      2. He participated in other basketball games while NCAA basketball tournament is on-going.

               Hence,

               Mr. Youseff (sic) Aljamal will no longer be allowed to play in NCAA for the remainder of the 83rd NCAA
               Basketball Season.

               For your information and guidance.

               Signed:

               Fr. Victor C. Calvo, OP
               CSJL Mancom

               Francisco Gusi
               SSC-R Mancom

               Michael del Mundo
               UPHSD Mancom

               Fernando Lozano
               MIT Mancom

               Henry Atayde
               CSB Mancom

               Efren Jose Y. Supan
               Chairman Mancom

The next day, hours before the game pitting San Beda and season host JRU, San Beda secured a temporary restraining order (TRO) from Executive Judge Reynaldo Ros, enjoining the MANCOM from enforcing the said resolution quoted above. The text of the said order appears below:

                                                           REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPINES
                                                              REGIONAL TRIAL COURT
                                                      NATIONAL CAPITAL JUDICIAL REGION
                                                                 BRANCH 33, MANILA

                                                       OFFICE OF THE EXECUTIVE JUDGE

SAN BEDA COLLEGE, ET. AL., Petitioner;
        versus
NATIONAL COLLEGIATE ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION, Respondent

Civil Case No. 07-117799

                                                                          ORDER

       This resolves the URGENT PRAYER FOR ISSUANCE OF TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER filed by petitioner, through counsel.

       This is a petition for injunction directed against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) to prevent them from enforcing its MANCOM resolution dated August 8, 2007.

       The Court finds the prayer to be MERITORIOUS. The Petitioners allege that the letter by MANCOM of the NCAA dated August 8, 2007 disallowing petitioner Yousif Aljamal, Jr. from playing in the remaining games of the league was handed to him yesterday August 21, 2007 in the afternoon. The game for which the penalty is supposed to start at 2:00pm which is determinative of the position of San Beda College NCAA Basketball team in the ranking in the final four for this season.

       The Rules of Court provides in Section 5 of Rule 58 that an ex-parte 72-hour Temporary Restraining Order shall issue if the matter is of extreme urgency and the applicant will suffer grave injustice or irreparable injury before the matter can be heard on notice. These elements are present in the present case.

       WHEREFORE, the prayer for the issuance of an ex-parte 72-hour temporary restraining order is hereby GRANTED. The respondents or any of its agents is hereby enjoined from enforcing its MANCOM resolution dated August 8, 2007 for a period of seventy-two hours. This Temporary Restraining Order is effective Seventy-Two (72) hours from its issuance. Accordingly, let this case be scheduled for Special Raffle this afternoon at 2:00Pm with notice to parties.

       SO ORDERED.

       Manila, Philippines. August 22, 2007, 10:30 AM

                                                                                                Sgd.

                                                                                                REYNALDO G. ROS
                                                                                                Executive Judge

Aljamal went on to play and led the San Beda Red Lions with 23 points and 9 rebounds in trouncing the Heavy Bombers, 82-74, but not after a near bench clearing incident that pitted the opposing coaches, San Beda coach Frankie Lim and JRU mentor Ariel Vanguardia in a shouting exchange. The skirmish did not end there. After the game, both coaches engaged in a shoving incident, which was featured in all major dailies.

In further developments, members of the MANCOM threatened to scrap the tournament altogether if San Beda decides to extend the TRO it filed Wednesday. But San Beda, through statements of Rector-President Fr. Mateo de Jesus, OSB will not withdraw its legal recourse notwithstanding the pronouncement of the MANCOM.

The legal battle continues as the summary hearing was set at 8:30 am today. So the world awaits for the next chapter of this ongoing saga.

For my comments on the said issue, which I have lots… and lots, I am still trying to compose myself. I will do so this afternoon.

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