UMass Minutemen basketball
|Massachusetts Minutemen Basketball|
|University||University of Massachusetts Amherst|
|Head coach||Frank Martin|
|Arena||William D. Mullins Memorial Center |
|Student section||The Militia|
|Colors||Maroon and white|
|NCAA Tournament Final Four|
|NCAA Tournament Elite Eight|
|NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen|
|1992, 1995, 1996*|
|NCAA Tournament Round of 32|
|1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996*|
|NCAA Tournament Appearances|
|1962, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996*, 1997, 1998, 2014|
|Conference tournament champions|
|1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996|
|Conference regular season champions|
|1962, 1968, 1969, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2007|
*Vacated by NCAA
The UMass Minutemen basketball team represents the University of Massachusetts Amherst in Amherst, Massachusetts, in NCAA Division I men's college basketball. They play their home games in the William D. Mullins Memorial Center. The Minutemen currently compete in the Atlantic 10 Conference.
The men's basketball program has a history of over 100 years. The Minutemen, as they have been called since 1972, celebrated their 100th season in 2008–09. Though the program's first game was played on January 10, 1900, there were several years in which no team was assembled.
The program's first coach was Harold M. Gore, who in 11 seasons compiled a record of 85–53 (.616 win percentage), highlighted by a 12–2 season in 1925–26. In 1933–34, Massachusetts was the only undefeated team in men's college basketball, going 12–0. For the 1948–49 season, Massachusetts joined the Yankee Conference to mark the first time they participated in conference play. UMass would go on to be 10-time champions of the Yankee Conference.
The 1960s and 1970s were prosperous for the program. The 1961–62 team went 15–9 and participated in the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history. They would go on to win 4 Yankee Conference titles in the 1960s, and played in the NIT at the end of the 1969–70 season. Though not a nationally recognized name, the program's coach with the most wins was Jack Leaman. Leaman guided Massachusetts to 217 wins, and coached players including Julius Erving, Al Skinner, Rick Pitino and Tom McLaughlin. The program compiled a record of 142–103 (.580) in the 1960s. The 1969–70 team featured Julius Erving. In his first game with the varsity team, a 90–85 win over Providence College, Erving scored 27 points and grabbed 28 rebounds.
In the first eight seasons of the 1970s, the Redmen/Minutemen compiled a record of 152–65 (.700). They won 5 Yankee Conference titles, and played in 5 NITs (the Yankee Conference did not have an NCAA Tournament automatic bid). The early 1970s teams featured players such as Erving, Al Skinner, and Rick Pitino. Jack Leaman, who coached the team for 13 seasons, hung it up after the 1978–79 season, with a record of 217–126 (.632). Though Leaman's last season as coach of the men's team was 1978–79, he remained a key part of the UMass Athletic Department until he died in 2004.
John Calipari era 1988–1996
The Minutemen fell on hard times in the late 1970s and 1980s, but would rebound under the direction of rookie coach John Calipari, perhaps the school's most recognizable coach, who took the head coaching job in 1988. Calipari took over a program that was on a streak of 10-straight losing seasons and had not been to the NCAA Tournament since 1962. Calipari led UMass to the NIT in his second season as head coach. In his fourth season, UMass won the A-10 regular season and tournament championships. Over the next few seasons, Calipari took the team to new heights and frequent #1 rankings in the AP weekly poll. In 1996, the Minutemen reached the Final Four for the first time. After the 1995–96 season, Calipari left UMass for the NBA as the new head coach of the New Jersey Nets. The 1990s were the defining decade for UMass basketball. Calipari helped the Minutemen become A-10 Tournament Champs five consecutive times (1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996), and appeared in the NCAA Tournament seven times, including two appearances in the Elite Eight (1995, 1996) and a Final Four appearance (1996), the only appearance ever for the Minutemen. However, NCAA sanctions stripped the Minutemen of their 1996 NCAA Tournament victories. The sanctions, based on star Marcus Camby admitting he took money, clothes, and jewelry from an agent during the season, removed the Final Four from the record books. Additionally, 45% of tournament revenue had to be returned to the NCAA. Camby reimbursed the school for the $151,617 in lost revenue.
Travis Ford era 2005–2008
In 2005, Travis Ford replaced Lappas. Though the Minutemen struggled with a 13–15 record in Ford's first season of 2005–06, he quickly improved the team in the next two seasons. In 2006–07, the Minutemen were co-champions of the Atlantic 10 (along with Xavier), reached the second round of the NIT, and finished with a record of 24–9. In 2007–08, the Minutemen reached the NIT championship game where they lost to Ohio State 92–85 and finished with a record of 25–11. Following the 2007–08 season, his third with the Minutemen, he left to take the head coaching vacancy at Oklahoma State.
Derek Kellogg era 2009–2017
On April 23, 2008, former Minutemen player Derek Kellogg returned to Amherst and became the 21st coach of the program. In 2011–12 the Minutemen appeared in the NIT after a successful season with a 22–11 record, reaching the semifinals, where they lost to Stanford. The Minutemen were again invited to the NIT in following the 2012–13.
The 2013–14 season was a massive success, as the Minutemen qualified for the NCAA tournament for the first time in 16 years. The team started off the season 10–0 and then 16–1, while reaching as high as #13 in the AP poll, and #12 in the Coaches poll. However, the Minutemen, a #6 seed, were defeated in their first game against #11 seeded Tennessee.
Kellogg was fired on March 9, 2017.
Matt McCall era 2017–2022
Shortly after Kellogg was fired, the school announced that Winthrop head coach Pat Kelsey had been hired as the new head coach at UMass. However, shortly before the press conference to announce his hiring, Kelsey announced he would not accept the position. On March 31, the school announced they had hired Chattanooga head coach Matt McCall.
McCall's tenure was not particularly successful, finishing with a 60–81 overall record at the school before being fired at the end of the 2022 season.
Through 2009, Massachusetts and the Rhode Island Rams have played over 130 times and at least once a year every year since 1950. The Atlantic 10 regularly pairs UMass and URI in a home-and-home series each season.
Starting in 1995, Massachusetts and Boston College played annually for the Commonwealth Cup, in the "Commonwealth Classic". Following the 2011–2012 season (in which UMass defeated the Eagles 82–46 in Chestnut Hill), Boston College discontinued the series in part due to changes to the ACC conference schedule and canceled their return trip to Amherst in late 2012.
UMass and Temple had an intense rivalry in the 1990s, during which time the schools were coached by John Calipari and John Chaney. The two coaches had to be restrained from each other during a 3-overtime game in 1990. After a game in 1994, Chaney charged at Calipari during a post-game press conference, and in front of reporters and television cameras, threatened to kill Calipari.
From 1996 to 2005, Massachusetts and Connecticut played in the "Mass Mutual U-Game", a reference to the two schools' nicknames, UMass and UConn, respectively. UConn won nine of the ten games. UMass won the 2004 game, in which the Huskies were the defending national champions.
|UMass Minutemen History|
|Mel Taube 1933–1936|
|Lorin Ball 1946–1952|
|1946–47||Walter Hargesheheimer (0–7)
Lorin Ball (4–5)
|Lorin Ball: 26–74 (.260)|
|Robert Curran 1952–1959|
|Robert Curran: 81–80 (.503)|
|Matt Zunic 1959–1963|
|1961–62||Matt Zunic||15–9||8–2||NCAA first round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|Matt Zunik: 57–41 (.582)|
|Johnny Orr 1963–1966|
|Johnny Orr: 39–33 (.542)|
|Jack Leaman 1966–1979|
|1967–68||Jack Leaman||14–11||8–2||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1968–69||Jack Leaman||17–7||9–1||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1969–70||Jack Leaman||18–7||8–2||NIT first round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1970–71||Jack Leaman||23–4||10–0||NIT first round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1972–73||Jack Leaman||20–7||10–2||NIT second round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1973–74||Jack Leaman||21–5||11–1||NIT first round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1974–75||Jack Leaman||18–8||10–2||NIT first round||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1975–76||Jack Leaman||21–6||11–1||Yankee Regular Season Champions|
|1976–77||Jack Leaman||20–11||3–4||NIT Quarterfinals|
|Eastern Collegiate Basketball League|
|Eastern Athletic Association|
|Jack Leaman: 217–126 (.633)|
|Ray Wilson 1979–1981|
|Ray Wilson: 5–48 (.094)|
|Tom McLaughlin 1981–1982|
|Atlantic 10 Conference|
|Tom McLaughlin: 16–40 (.286)|
|Ron Gerlufsen 1983–1988|
|Ron Gerlufsen: 55–84 (.396)|
|John Calipari 1988–1996|
|1989–90||John Calipari||17–14||10–8||NIT first round|
|1990–91||John Calipari||20–13||10–8||NIT Fourth Place|
|1991–92||John Calipari||30–5||13–3||NCAA Sweet Sixteen||A-10 Regular Season and Tournament Champions|
|1992–93||John Calipari||24–7||11–3||NCAA second round||A-10 Regular Season and Tournament Champions|
|1993–94||John Calipari||28–7||14–2||NCAA second round||A-10 Regular Season and Tournament Champions|
|1994–95||John Calipari||29–5||13–3||NCAA Elite Eight||A-10 Regular Season and Tournament Champions|
|1995–96||John Calipari||35–2||15–1||NCAA Final Four||A-10 Regular Season and Tournament Champions|
|John Calipari: 193–71 (.731)|
|Bruiser Flint 1996–2001|
|1996–97||Bruiser Flint||19–14||11–5||NCAA Tournament first round|
|1997–98||Bruiser Flint||21–11||12–4||NCAA Tournament first round|
|1999–2000||Bruiser Flint||17–16||9–7||NIT first round|
|Bruiser Flint: 86–72 (.544)|
|Steve Lappas 2001–2005|
|Steve Lappas: 50–65 (.435)|
|Travis Ford 2005–2008|
|2006–07||Travis Ford||24–9||13–3||NIT second round|
|2007–08||Travis Ford||25–11||10–6||NIT Final|
|Travis Ford: 62–35 (.639)|
|Derek Kellogg 2008–2017|
|2011–12||Derek Kellogg||25–12||9–7||NIT semifinal|
|2012–13||Derek Kellogg||21–12||9–7||NIT first round|
|2013–14||Derek Kellogg||24–9||10–6||NCAA first round|
|Derek Kellogg: 155–137 (.531)|
|Matt McCall: 61–82(.427)|
|Frank Martin: 0–0 (–)|
|Overall Record: 1338–1213 (.525)|
NCAA tournament results
The Minutemen have appeared in the NCAA tournament nine times. Their combined record is 11–9. Their 1996 victories have been vacated by the NCAA thus their official tournament record is 7–8.
|1962||First Round||NYU||L 50–70|
|#15 Southwest Texas State
|#15 Saint Peter's
#4 Oklahoma State
|1997||#11||First Round||#6 Louisville||L 57–65|
|1998||#7||First Round||#10 Saint Louis||L 46–51|
|2014||#6||Second Round||#11 Tennessee||L 67–86|
* vacated by NCAA
The Minutemen have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) 13 times. Their combined record is 13–14.
|1970||First Round||Marquette||L 55–62|
|1971||First Round||North Carolina||L 49–90|
|1974||First Round||Jacksonville||L 69–73OT|
|1975||First Round||Manhattan||L 51–68|
|1990||First Round||Maryland||L 81–91|
3rd Place Game
|2000||First Round||Siena||L 65–66|
|Stephen F. Austin
|2013||First Round||Stony Brook||L 58–71|
Several Massachusetts alumni have gone on to play in the NBA:
International league players
Honored members of UMass Minutemen basketball history
|UMass Minutemen retired numbers|
UMass Athletic Hall of Fame
Many former members of the basketball program have been elected into the school's Hall of Fame. Class years listed in parentheses.
- David Bartley (1956)
- George "Trigger" Burke (1956)
- Lou Bush (1934)
- John Calipari (coach)
- Marcus Camby (1996)
- Joe DiSarcina (1969)
- Ray Ellerbrook (1970)
- Frederick "Fritz" Ellert (1930)
- Julius Erving (1972)
- Jack Foley (1957)
- Harold "Kid" Gore (coach)
- Emory Grayson (1917)
- Doug Grutchfield (1961)
- Ned Larkin (1959)
- Jack Leaman (coach)
- Joseph Lojko (1934)
- Jim McCoy (1992)
- Edward McGrath (1949)
- Bill Prevey (1952)
- Lou Roe (1995)
- Al Skinner (1974)
- John Stewart (1936)
- Billy Tindall (1968)
- Rodger Twitchell (1964)
- Harper Williams (1993)
The Hall is officially named "The George 'Trigger' Burke UMass Athletic Hall of Fame" in recognition of Burke's generous support of UMass Athletics and student scholarships.
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- "NCAA College Basketball Polls, College Basketball Rankings, NCAA Basketball Polls – ESPN". ESPN.com.
- Thamel, Pete. "UMass to hire Winthrop's Pat Kelsey as head coach". SI.com. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
- "Pat Kelsey bails on UMass presser, turns down job at last minute, will remain at Winthrop". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
- "Matt McCall hired as new UMass head coach". Coaches Database. March 30, 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
- Borzello, Jeff; Thamel, Pete (March 1, 2022). "Matt McCall out as UMass men's basketball coach at end of season, school announces". ESPN. Retrieved March 2, 2022.
- "Calipari's greatest coaching feuds". MCA.
- Moran, Malcolm (14 February 1994). "COLLEGE BASKETBALL; Chaney Lambastes UMass's Calipari". The New York Times.
- "Massachusetts". College Basketball at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved 2017-03-21.
- "University of Massachusetts Official Athletic Site – Traditions". umassathletics.com. Archived from the original on 2011-07-23.
- "UMass basketball will retire Marcus Camby's No. 21 jersey". masslive.com.
- "Marcus Camby's No. 21 retired at UMass ceremony". GazetteNet.com.
- "University of Massachusetts Official Athletic Site – Traditions". umassathletics.com. Archived from the original on 2012-03-11.