Massachusetts Men's Basketball 2014 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Massachusetts Minutemen
Atlantic 10 (24-8, 10-6)


Massachusetts has not been to the NCAA Tournament since 1998, but they wasted no time turning into the team to beat heading into A-10 play. The Minutemen started the campaign 10-0 with wins over the likes of LSU, Nebraska, New Mexico, Clemson and BYU. Not surprisingly, the team fell off a touch in A-10 play. However, there is no shame in losing to teams like Richmond and St. Joseph’s, especially on the road.

Big Wins: 11/22 vs New Mexico (81-65), 2/15 at George Washington (67-61), 2/21 VCU (80-75)
Bad Losses: 1/22 at Richmond (55-58), 1/19 at St. Bonaventure (65-78), 2/12 George Mason 80-91)
Coach: Derek Kellogg (6 seasons at Massachusetts)

Why They Can Surprise:
Coach Derek Kellogg runs a seven man rotation and those seven players are very good. Senior point guard Chaz Williams is the superstar. He led the team with 15.8 points and 7.0 assists per game. His assist total ranks among the best in the nation. Umass can certainly feel comfortable when Williams has the ball in his hands; which is just about all of the time. Derrick Gordon, a tough do-it-all sophomore, joins Williams in the backcourt. Trey Davis has quickly developed into a solid secondary ball handler and also provides an offensive spark off of the bench with his three-point shooting ability. Sampson Carter, Raphiael Putney and Cady Lalanne are the starters up front. At 6-8, 6-9 and 6-10, respectively, the frontcourt does not lack in size. Carter and Putney can both stretch the defense and Lalanne has developed into a consistent double-double threat.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Unfortunately, that toughness up front can lead to foul trouble. There have been occasions throughout the season where the Minutemen have to be very careful on defense. Careful is not always the best way to make deep tournament runs. Maxie Esho is a great option off of the bench and Umass can play small with Williams, Gordon and Davis on the floor at the same time, yet the foul issues can bite the backcourt too.  

Probable Starters:
Chaz Williams, Senior, Guard, 15.8 ppg, 7.0 apg
Derrick Gordon, Sophomore, Guard, 9.3 ppg, 2.1 apg
Sampson Carter, Senior, Forward, 10.5 ppg, .9 rpg
Raphiael Putney, Senior, Forward, 9.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg
Cady Lalanne, Junior, Center, 11.4 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 2.2 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Trey Davis, Sophomore, Guard, 9.2 ppg, 2.5 apg
Maxie Esho, Junior, Forward, 8.8 ppg, 5.0 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 76.4 (48th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 70.6 (195, 10)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.6 (62, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.8 (86, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.5 (250, 10)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.5 (121, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 67.5 (250, 8)
Rebound Margin: 3.2 (77, 4)
Assists Per Game: 15.6 (25, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.5 (275, 11)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NIT        First Round loss to Stony Brook
2012    NIT        First Round win over Mississippi State
2012    NIT        Second Round win over Seton Hall
2012    NIT        Quarterfinal win over Drexel
2012    NIT        Semifinal loss to Stanford
2008    NIT        First Round win over Stephen F. Austin
2008    NIT        Second Round win over Akron
2008    NIT        Quarterfinal win over Syracuse
2008    NIT        Semifinal win over Florida
2008    NIT        Final loss to Ohio State
2007    NIT        First Round win over Alabama
2007    NIT        Second Round loss to West Virginia
2000    NIT        First round loss to Siena
1998    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Saint Louis
1997    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Louisville

*all team stats through 3/9


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules