Limpag: A potential win-win partnership

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Sunday, June 29, 2014


A FEW years ago, I got an unexpected call from Ed Hayco, who was then about to be tapped as chairman of the Cebu City Sports Commission. He asked for advice about the post and I told him simply: Don’t take it.

I was afraid that the amiable godfather of dancesport would be stuck in the quagmire that goes along with being a political appointee in a sports landscape.

Besides, at the time, what happened to the former chairman Jonathan Guardo was still fresh in my memory.

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It’s a good thing the chairman never listened and four years later, we have a solid CCSC with programs that are the envy of other sports commissions in the country.

Sports commissions who have lame duck political appointees as leaders who do nothing.

Aside from leading the challenge, the CCSC chair is trying to get everyone involved in sports development. And his latest challenge is for the members of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc.

“Share what you have with public schools,” Hayco challenged the coaches during a seminar. And no, it’s not about sharing equipment and players, it’s about sharing knowledge.

If Cesafi takes it, it’s going to be a challenge that will benefit all.

It’s one of the truths in the landscape of sports in the country—public schools have the players, but don’t have the knowhow, private schools have the coaches, but sometimes, lack the players.

This challenge is already being done by some private schools, although in a small scale. I know Paref Springdale is partnering with Lahug Elementary School in helping its football team, and in the process, turned it into a powerhouse squad, while in the past, SHS-Ateneo de Cebu, has also helped out Canduman Elementary School. A few years ago (I’m not sure it is still being done) CIS held a volleyball tournament for its neighboring schools.

What makes the challenge to Cesafi different is that if the league accepts it, this is going to be taken up by all its members and so far, things are looking bright.

“That proposal was raised during our coaches seminar. That will be taken up with the schoolheads. But the feedback from all was positive. (We) just need to fine tune the details,” said Cesafi’s Rico Navarro, who is also the atheltic director of SHS-AdC.

I don’t know how the Cesafi will arrange it, but, the league could recognize each strengths of its member school and let them pick a sport.

Say, the University of Cebu is strong in table tennis, let it take charge of the sport. Ditto with USC and swimming, or SWU and volleyball.

How would it benefit the Cesafi? Simple, if you got hundreds of students from the public schools taking up volleyball, table tennis or swimming or any other sport, then, there is no need for Cesafi schools to look further for recruitment.

The players they teach can be their recruitment base, not just for the school that initiates it, but for all members of the Cesafi.

Like I said, it’s a potential win-win relationship that benefits the Cesafi, the private schools and the players.

However, its success would depend on how the schools involved sees the relationship—a burden or a challenge.

(mikelimpag@gmail.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on June 30, 2014.

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