ABS-CBN Sports, the UAAP's media partner, has announced that the Season 76 will open in 50 days.
50 days to go until UAAP Season 76! Greatness never ends!
— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) May 10, 2013
I didn't look into the implications the first time I read that; it was only today that I realized it meant Season 76—and necessarily the centerpiece Men's Basketball tournament—will start on Saturday, June 29. That's an adjustment of sorts for the UAAP, which for the past four years has opened in the second weekend of July.
I'm guessing the reason for the change is the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship for Men that will be held in Manila from August 1 to 11. Perhaps the UAAP is doing its part to ensure that in early August at least, the Asian basketball championships will be the only game in town. Surely it's not due to a lack of playing venues. Although the Mall of Asia Arena and the Ninoy Aquino Stadium will be in use for the FIBA Asia tournament, the UAAP still has the PhilSports Arena, the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan, and the Araneta Coliseum—arenas where the league has staged majority of its basketball games in recent years—as possible venues.
One other effect of the UAAP opening day moving up the calendar? The interval between the 2012-2013 NBA Finals (which could end as late as June 20) and the start of Season 76 is lessened. That's a boon for those among us who need their basketball fix.
[24 May 2013]
Here's one other change in the upcoming season: the Men's basketball games will be held on Wednesday, Saturdays, and Sundays instead of the Thursday-Saturday-Sunday schedule in years past.
The UAAP 76 men's srs. basketball games will take place Wed, Sat and Sun at MOA Arena and Araneta Coliseum.
— UAAP Sports TV (@UAAPSportsTV) May 24, 2013