Nelle says DLSU Green Archers are favorites to win the UAAP title

Evan Nelle believes DLSU can win it this time. (

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

Fresh off a stellar off-season after upsetting the Marinerong Pilipino squad to win the 2022 PBA D-League championship title, the De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Archers are on an all-time high heading into the new season of the UAAP men’s basketball tournament.

With experts and analysts picking the University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Maroons and the Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) Blue Eagles to meet again for a grand finals rematch, others have chosen DLSU as the dark horse of the conference.

However, Green Archers superstar point guard Evan Nelle, thinks that the green and white are the no. 1 team in the league and are favored to win the prestigious title.

“I really think we’re the favorites because we bonded. The way our preseason games concluded, we really showed what we can do as a team,” said Nelle during the UAAP Season 85 press conference.

Defeating Marinero was probably the Green Archers’ biggest off-season victory after going up against Juan Gomez de Liaño and other former collegiate superstars.

Aside from their PBA D-League stint, the Green Archers also managed to clinch the bronze medal during the 2022 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup.

DLSU had a chance to set up a grand finals clash with the Blue Eagles last season after holding a double-digit lead against the Fighting Maroons during the do-or-die semifinals.

However, the Fighting Maroons found a way to storm back from the deficit and stunned the Green Archers in Game 2.

“Hindi ako nakatulog ilang linggo rin. Up to now, it still pains me. Every time we have bad practices, every time we don’t wanna practice, coach reminds us that we were like, three minutes, 30 seconds away from the finals. Coming into the new season, we’re using that as motivation,” added Nelle.

DLSU also fortified its roster for Season 85 and brought in one of the most dominant juniors player in the history of the UAAP, Kevin Quiambao.

Known for his high court IQ during his stint with the Gilas Pilipinas men’s national basketball team, Quiambao will team up with Michael Phillips in the paint to form one of the best frontcourt duos in the UAAP.

Still with the Green Archers are Nelle, scoring machine guard Deschon Winston, former Hua Siong College of Iloilo superstar Mark Nonoy, and veteran Joaqui Manuel.