MANILA, Philippines -- The University of Santo Tomas (UST) has decided to back former head coach Aldin Ayo in his appeal of his indefinite ban from the UAAP.
This comes a month after the league declared that Ayo is banned "indefinitely from participating, in any capacity, in all UAAP events and UAAP sanctioned-activities."
This, as Ayo was found responsible for "endangering the health and well-being of the student-athletes under his charge" when the Growling Tigers allegedly trained in his hometown of Capuy, Sorsogon in June.
Quoting a school official, the Varsitarian reported that UST has "endorsed the letter of appeal of coach Aldin Ayo subject to the qualification that it stands by the report of its fact-finding committee."
The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the school found the penalty on Ayo to be "too harsh."
Ayo resigned on the first week of September, ahead of the UAAP's decision to ban him. He has since filed an appeal of the ban, while the Office of the Governor of Sorsogon has also cleared him of any violations.
A memorandum signed by Sorsogon Gov. Francis "Chiz" Escudero said they found the activities done by Ayo and the Growling Tigers to be "legitimate." According to a report by Sorsogon police, the players' activities were focused on "agricultural activities" instead of basketball training.
Ayo coached UST for two seasons, leading the Growling Tigers to a finals appearance in Season 82.