THE University of San Carlos Warriors are facing a tough challenge of building a champion team for the upcoming season in August.

This early, newly named coach Rodolfo “Bong” Abad has to dig deep into the school’s list of reserves, hold tryouts and even tap scouts from abroad in order to come up with a strong team for its title retention bid in the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi).

Financially, USC still enjoys the full commitment from the Green and Gold Warriors Alumni headed by Bogo City Mayor Celestino “Junie” Martinez Jr.

And there’s the pledge of support from businessman Joe Soberano and the other members of the Warriors Alumni who remain committed to the team.

“I have already given my commitment to Fr. Andring (Ocariza). Although the team has yet to see me during their practice sessions because of my bid for a congress seat (Cebu 4th district). I am fully committed and in fact we are currently negotiating with a Fil-American player who can help our campaign for the upcoming season,” Martinez told Sun.Star Cebu.

The Warriors will be leaving for Koronadal City for the Private School Athletic Association (Prisaa) National Meet but the team is not as strong as it was before without top scorer Shooster Olago and big men Charles Pepito, William McAlloney and Nico Magat.

Kiefer Lim will also skip the tournament as he has not joined the Warriors practice since January.

Lim earlier told Sun.Star Cebu that he is still trying to consider his decision to concentrate on his studies as he will be entering his fourth year in the coming school year.

Lim is still trying to weigh his options wether to finish his studies by March next year or stay for one more year just to play for one more season with the Warriors.

“As you can see, the PBA is a long shot for me. I might consider concentrating on my studies and start my own business and leave the Warriors. But I am still doubtful, I do have plans but I am considering all my options,” Lim said.