The Ateneo De Manila University Blue Eagles will be the host of this year's University Athletic Association of The Philippines (UAAP) 74. The biggest buzz right now is that they will incorporate an Olympic style of opening ceremony to usher in the UAAP Season 74 on July 9, 2011. The opening ceremony will be held at exactly 4:00 p.m. at the Marikina Sports Center. You will have to ask why in Marikina? When you look at the Google Map it's quite near at the Ateneo. Perhaps it will give them an easier time to transfer their props from Loyola Heights to Marikina. The ceremony will include the traditional parade of athletes and the Athenian torch relay.
When asked why they want that kind of opening ceremony, Mr. Richard Palou, the president of the UAAP 74th Season Basketball division said:
"We want something different and try something new. All athletes from various sports will participate in the opening ceremonies and show everybody that UAAP is not just basketball."
"All Out, All Heart," that will be the theme of this year's UAAP. The Ateneo composed a song centered on that theme. A special group of Ateneo graduates will be singing the song in front of the crowd.
The torch is currently circulating around the member schools of the UAAP. It will stop on July 9 at the Marikina Sports Complex where the lighting of the torch will happen.
The UAAP Secretary treasurer and at the same time the Ateneo De Manila athletics director Em Fernandez said:
"We have already done the torch relay and the people can also witness the lighting of the torch run from Marikina going to the sports complex."
If ever there will be a rain on the opening day, the Ateneo De Manila have prepared a back-up plan. Em Fernandez added:
"It (torch relay and lighting) would not be cancelled. We are well-prepared for the rain."
With regard to the UAAP Men'S basketball games, they are scheduled on the next day. There will be no games on the opening day.