UAAP reigning champion Ateneo has secured the commitment of Filipino-Australian big man Mason Amos who will be suiting up for the Blue Eagles in Season 86.
The development was announced in a short media briefing attended by head coach Tab Baldwin, team manager Epok Quimpo, and Amos himself Monday, April 25.
The 18-year-old Amos is set to graduate from Brisbane State High School this year, where he continued to improve his basketball skills in preparation for the collegiate level.
Fortunately, Amos chose the Philippines and the Katipunan-based squad for his next destination for his young career even as the Eagles have been dominating the 84th season with 11 straight wins en route to an easy Final Four berth.
"I think Mason gives us something that we don't have right now. He's a guy that can play both big man positions," said Baldwin.
"He can put the ball down, he's not gonna be able to be a slick, quick guard in the UAAP but as he evolves into a professional player, he's gonna be a guy that can live on the perimeter but also has the ability to take smaller players down low because of his height," added the three-time UAAP champion coach.
Standing at 6-foot-7, Amos can fill an integral cog in the stretch-four position. By Season 86, veteran center Ange Kouame would already be in his final year and Mason's company will just come in time for the defending champion.
Baldwin also emphasized the versatility that Mason can bring on the floor as he is known for being a consistent shooter from the perimeter.
Mason actually had practice sessions with the Ateneo high school basketball team and was supposed to suit up in Season 82.
His announcement served as a recommitment to the Ateneo community and vowed to give his "110 percent" both in basketball and in the classroom.
"I felt like Ateneo was the place that I would develop the most and that I can really excel with education," said the Fil-Aussie cager, who was born to a Filipino father and Filipino-American mother. "So that’s like the main reason why I chose Ateneo."
Per Baldwin, Amos, who was part of the Batang Gilas that was supposed to compete in the FIBA U-16 Asian Championship, will have five full years of eligibility in the UAAP.