“POWER and dominance.”

This will be the battle cry of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi), which will kick off a milestone 10th year this Saturday at the Cebu Coliseum.

“We motivate all school to put their best foot forward and to try their best to dominate so that it won’t be just another UV show,” said commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy in yesterday’s press conference. “10 years is a milestone. We hope to have a smooth-sailing season.”

Updates on President Benigno Aquino III's presidency

And to answer the expectation set by the commissioners, teams are beefing up.

Even last year’s whipping boys, the Cebu Eastern College, promise to give a credible performance with a more prepared team.

To try and dominate may be look like an easy task but it won’t be the case for the University of San Carlos Warriors, a once powerhouse team that challenged the University of the Visayas in three title fights. This year USC might return to being

doormats after only nine players passed the stringent screening process.

“The most common problem of their players is failing to comply with the academic requirements,” said Tiukinhoy.

This is the first time a team will be fielding only nine players.

Coaching staff of USC, which is known for its strict academic requirements of its athletes, refused to comment on their plight for the upcoming season but whether the team will sink or swim will depend on Joven Cortes, Sam Hermosa, Giovanni Padillo, Carl Santos, Chino Uy, June Michael Cantonao, Robert Codilla, Nilton Otida and Mark Panerio.

Tiukinhoy added after a tumultuous 2009 season where they were bombarded with several controversies, they made sure it will be a better year.

“We ironed out all the kinks in the rules. We left no gray area. All those rules that came into question last year were reviewed and the draft of the changes sent to the athletic directors for their inputs,” said Tiukinhoy.

Tiukinhoy also said players have to pay attention to their actions this year.

“For players with attitude problems, we will be banning them for the rest of the season instead of just for three games,” said Tiukinhoy.