The UMBR lived up to our ‘beat writer’ title and were the only bloggers on hand to meet Coach Matt McCall tonight at the UMass Club in Boston.
It was a surprisingly quiet crowd at 1 Beacon St. of mostly UMass athletics employees, alumni association board members, and other prominent alumni / donors. Coach McCall floated around the room shaking hands and meeting the fans. He’s an incredibly nice guy and really seems excited to be part of the program. Ryan Bamford was also in the room working the crowd like an absolute pro.
After the brief networking session, AD Bamford brought Coach McCall up to the front of the room and let him field some questions from the crowd. Most of the questions centered around how to make UMass basketball great again; recruiting, player development, schedule, and game attendance were a few topics of concern. Even Trigger Burke asked if he could suit up for one more season!
I was pretty impressed by Coach McCall’s answers. He was confident but not unrealistic in his expectations for the team. He understands that before there will be success, he needs to build a solid foundation. He’s recruiting players he knows will buy into the UMass culture and is not wasting energy on players who are not invested. Coach plans to run a high energy, pressing defense and an offense built primarily around shooters. He also specifically mentioned how impressed he is with Rashaan Holloway so hopefully that means we will also see a lot more minutes from the big man.
After meeting the coach and hearing his plans for the future, the UMBR is all in! We’re looking forward to a new era of UMass Basketball!