21 December 2016

Another collegiate season has passed and basketball fans following the NCAA and the UAAP were once again left with memorable individual performances from players from both leagues. 

Sports Illustrated Philippines dedicated this week in ranking the 50 best players from the UAAP and the NCAA, based on their individual statistics, team roles and how far their respective teams went with their campaign. 

We start with players 50 to 41 and will continue count down up until the week ends. 

Editor’s note: There may be some disparity between the numbers of NCAA and the UAAP considering that the style of play is faster in the NCAA with most UAAP teams opting to set-up and play it in the halfcourt. This issue was put into consideration. 

50. Abu Tratter 

La Salle - 6.0 PPG, 7.3 RPG

The numbers weren't necessarily there for Abu Tratter especially after a strong showing in the preseason but his impact in Aldin Ayo's championship team is more than the statistics. 

He basically eases the job of Ben Mbala as his presence allows the UAAP Most Valuable Player to move freely without worrying of leaving a hole in the interior. 

49. Paolo Pontejos 

Jose Rizal University - 10.9 PPG, 2.6 RPG

Paolo Pontejos is the perfect example of a player who would have been higher in the rankings but was plagued with inconsistencies. 

On a good day, Pontejos is still one of the most lethal scorers in the whole collegiate ranks but his inability to pull off consistent performances for coach Vergel Meneses eventually led to their downfall. 

48. Joseph Eriobu 

Mapua - 9.1 PPG, 5 RPG 

Versatility is one aspect which stands out in Joseph Eriobu's game and he could have been so much better if he was given more minutes to play alongside NCAA Most Valuable Player Allwell Oraeme. 

In the times where he saw extended minutes, the Cardinals gave everyone fits as his ability to stretch the floor while playing at the four spot gives Oraeme the leeway to wreak havoc in the paint. 

47. Bonbon Batiller 

University of the East - 9 PPG, 4 RPG

Bonbon Batiller burst into the scene last year when he delivered a string of impressive performance to kick off UE's campaign. Since the he has failed to regain that traction and his struggles continued this season. 

But when Batiller is on point, UE's a whole lot better and that was evident as the Red Warriors won two of their final three games with Batiller playing well. 

46. Adrian Wong

Ateneo - 9.4 PPG, 2 RPG, 2.1 APG

The reason why Adrian Wong is this low is that his squad, Ateneo, is built on a strong team performance, instead of individual mastery. 

That being said, it doesn't take away the fact that Wong is a player that flew under the radar for most parts of the season. His strong performance in the Finals against La Salle was a good indication of what he can really do. 

45. Michael Calisaan 

San Sebastian - 10 PPG 6.5 RPG

Things were looking bright for Michael Calisaan until a motorcycle accident last Summer derailed his development. As expected, he lost all sorts of momentum at the early part of the tournament, having problems with timing and overall fitness. But that slowly changed as he gradually got his groove back, eventually leading San Sebastian to a respectable second round showing. 

44. MJ Ayaay 

Lyceum - 9.4 PPG, 5.6 RPG, 2 APG

Playing on a team with several players playing the same style, it's really hard to stand out. However, MJ Ayaay did just enough to get noticed. 

Comfortably playing one to three positions, his versatility and his all-around appraoch to the game was enough of a reason to grant him a place in the SI 50. 

43. Aljun Melecio

La Salle - 8.4 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 1 APG 

When Aljun Melecio moved up to the seniors from an illustrious juniors career with Zobel, a lot of people were wondering if the diminutive guard actually had a place in the La Salle roster. 

A few clutch baskets, a rookie of the year award and a strong outing in the Finals changed all of that and it looks like the team will be his for the taking in the future. 

42. Abdoul Poutouchi

Jose Rizal University - 8.6 PPG, 8.5 RPG, 2 APG

There will be times where Abdoul Poutouchi would look like an absolute beast, a big man which can impact the game on both sides of the court, most times he looks lost and disengaged from the scene. 

If he sticks with JRU and finally finds his niche, then good things might be in store for the Heavy Bombers. 

41. Alvin Pasaol

University of the East - 11 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 1.6 APG

A slow start to the season hampered Alvin Pasaol's stock in this ranking but his position in this list isn't a good basis of how good this kid can be. 

His confidence suits well with his bullish physic and no-let-up attitude. Right now, it's all a matter of improving his decision making and shot selections.