The 2020-21 UMass Minutemen men's basketball team represented the University of Massachusetts, the flagship campus in Amherst. The Head Coach was Matt McCall. The team played its home games in the Mullins Center in Amherst, Massachusetts, and was a member of the Atlantic 10 Conference.
The 2020-21 season represented the 112th season of basketball in the school's history.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this season was mired in disruption. Games started more than a month later than normal, and numerous games were cancelled. The team also went on multiple pauses due to COVID protocols, as did several of their scheduled opponents.
UMass also lost a game due to the January 6 attack on the US Capitol and resulting city lockdown.
All in all, UMass played less than half the typical total amount of games, and only three non-conference games, two of which game on an unusual back-to-back against the same team.
|Date||Opponent||Game Results||High Scorer||High Rebounder||Overall||A10||UM||Opp|
|12/11||Northeastern||W 94-79||Tre Mitchell (31)||Tre Mitchell (11)||1-0||–||–||–||Tre dominates early and often, including 19 & 6 in the first half. Garcia impressive with 23 in his debut, including 9-13 FG. Pierre 14, Weeks 11. NU led by Walker's 29.|
|12/13||at Northeastern||L 78-75||Garcia (18)||Tre Mitchell (8)||1-1||–||–||–||At Cabot Center. NU goes on an 11-2 run in the second half, and holds a 10 point edge with 46 seconds to play. UM scrambles but the comeback attempt falls short. Husky defense limits Tre to 10 points and 3-10 shooting. Walker 20 for NU.|
|12/16||at La Salle||W 85-66||Tre Mitchell (37)||McCrory (9)||2-1||1-0||–||–||Tre shoots 13-17 overall and racks up 37 points for a new career high, shredding the Explorer defense. Pierre adds 14 points. Fernandes 11 pts, 9 assists, just 1 turnover.|
|12/21||Bryant||L 93-88||Pierre (23)||Fernandes, McCrory, Pierre (5 each)||2-2||–||–||–||Bryant's fast offense and hot shooting puts UM on their heels. Bulldogs' 22 turnovers lets UM hang around, but Bryant's zone neutralizes Tre (4 field goals, 3 rebounds), and UM settles for threes that won't fall (9-34 / .265).|
|12/30||George Mason||L 93-92 (2OT)||Tre Mitchell (23)||DeGray, Fernandes, Tre Mitchell (8 each)||2-3||1-1||–||–||Demoralizing loss as UM blows three late leads: up 8 with 1:08 left in regulation, up 7 with 3:00 left in OT1, up 6 with 1:30 left in OT2. Mason's zone defense frustrates UM, Tre stuck on 7 points until 4:30 left in regulation. Fernandes & Pierre with 19 pts each, Weeks 14.|
|1/9||La Salle||W 83-67||McCrory & Pierre (15 each)||Tre Mitchell (8)||3-3||2-1||–||–||Balanced attack with 4 M'men in double figures. Fernandes 13/7/7:1. Tre (11 points) relaxes a little with teammates carrying more load. DeGray 9/3/5, Garcia 8.|
|1/13||Rhode Island||W 80-78 (OT)||DeGray (21)||Fernandes (8)||4-3||3-1||–||–||UM uses a 17-3 second half run to go up 15, only to lose it and go into OT. Tre fights through 4 fouls and scores 4 critical points in OT, but star of the game was DeGray (7-9 FG, 6-8 FT, 6 boards, 3 assists, 2 steals).|
|1/17||at Fordham||W 65-46||Tre Mitchell (24)||DeGray (10)||5-3||4-1||–||–||UM throttled Fordham in the first, 44-17, and built it to 52-17, then offensively stalled, but it was enough. Tre 24 & 8, Weeks 11 pts, Pierre 9, DeGray 8 & 10.|
|1/24||Davidson||L 69-60||Tre Mitchell & Weeks (16 each)||Tre Mitchell (9)||5-4||4-2||–||–||UM went ahead 38-31 with 17:33 to play, and Grady stuck on 2 points. Davidson went on a 38-16 run after that, with Grady scoring 20. Tre leaves game with a shoulder injury. Fernandes 15 pts, but rest of UM just 13 combined.|
|2/3||Fordham||W 60-54||Garcia (14)||Weeks (12)||6-4||5-2||–||–||Tre and Noah sit out with injuries. Gasperini (9 & 5) and Garcia (14/3/5) start in their spot. TJ tallies a double-double with 13 & 12. Fordham misses with 21% from 3, 50% from the line.|
|2/6||at Rhode Island||W 75-63||Pierre (19)||McCrory (11)||7-4||6-2||–||–||With Tre and Noah still out, UM shoves their 10-point underdog status down Rhody's throat. Pierre hits a season-high 5 threes. Gasperini gets his breakout game: 11 pts, 5 boards, 4 assists, 2 steals, and his first UM three-pointer. McCrory 11 & 11 off the bench. DeGray 11 & 6, Garcia 8 points before leaving after an elbow to the eye. URI doesn't hit a three, first time since 2011.|
|2/23||at Richmond||L 79-65||Dominguez (15)||DeGray and Weeks (5 each)||7-5||6-3||–||–||New high for DD with 15, but rest of team looks rusty after the long layoff, and has trouble stopping the UR flow and back-door cuts. Weeks scores 11 early, but only 3 over the final 27+ minutes. Tre limited to 9 & 4 in 22 foul-plagued minutes, Noah 3 & 3 in 20 minutes, both off the bench.|
|3/1||at Saint Louis||L 78-57||Fernandes (16)||Tre Mitchell (5)||7-6||6-4||–||–||UM flubs their chance to get a double-bye, getting crushed on the boards (-13). Tre limited to 10 pts on 2-7 FG as SLU plays him tough. Pierre 12 pts. SLU gets 5 in double figures.|
|3/4||vs Saint Joseph's||W 100-66||DeGray (19)||Tre Mitchell (11)||8-6||–||–||–||A-10 Tournament, Second Round. Seeds: UM 5, SJU 13. UM absolutely on fire early, scoring 74 points with 17:33 left in the game. UM shot 66% in the first, including 60% from 3, 56% overall in the game. Six M'Men in double figures. UM holds SJU to 34% overall, 30% from 3, Daly just 2-10.|
|3/5||vs Saint Louis||L 86-72||Tre Mitchell (30)||Tre Mitchell (6)||8-7||–||–||–||A-10 Tournament Quarter-Final. SLU seeded 4. SLU imposes their physicality, dominating the glass 45-22. Great shooting from Tre (10-16 / 2-3 / 8-8), but not enough from rest of UM. Garcia 11, McCrory 9, Pierre 8. Perkins 25 pts for SLU (+8 over his average). UM leaves Collins open on double-teams and he ties his career high with 17 (+12 vs average). Goodwin 18 & 14, French 8 & 11.|
Category leaders highlighted. Clear leaders in yellow. Blue indicates leaders with differing minimum thresholds.
|#||Name||Height||Weight||Class||Pos.||Hometown / HS / Prep / College Transfer||Status|
|00||Antonopoulos, Brady||6-1||165||Sr.||G||West Brookfield, MA / Quaboag Regional HS||Active, walk-on8)|
|13||DeGray, Ronnie||6-7||220||Fr.||F||Parker, CO / Woodstock Academy||Active|
|4||Dominguez, Dyondre||6-8||195||Fr.||F||Providence, RI / Woodstock Academy||Active|
|11||Fernandes, Noah||5-11||172||So.||G||Mattapoisett, MA / Woodstock Academy / Wichita State||Active|
|1||Garcia, Javohn||6-2||175||Fr.||PG||Pickerington, OH / Brewster Academy||Active|
|10||Gasperini, Mark||6-10||245||Gr.||F/C||Moscow, Russia / Brimmer and May School / American Univ.||Active|
|20||Marcus, Ryan||6-3||175||Fr.||G||Wakefield, MA / Wakefield HS||Active, preferred walk-on9)10)|
|5||McCrory, Cairo||6-5||185||Fr.||SG||Hartford, CT / Masters/Northwest Catholic / Woodstock Academy||Active|
|3||Mitchell, Kolton||6-3||175||So.||G||Fort Myers, FL / Victory Rock Prep||Active|
|33||Mitchell, Tre||6-9||235||So.||F/C||Pittsburgh, PA / Woodstock Academy||Active|
|12||Pierre, Carl||6-4||190||Sr.||G||Boston, MA / Boston College HS||Active, team captain11)|
|2||Santos, Preston||6-6||180||So.||G/F||Warwick, RI / Woodstock Academy||Inactive. Opted out of the season for personal reasons.|
|24||Walker, Dibaji||6-7||190||Jr.||F||Columbus, OH / Woodstock Academy / Cleveland State||Active|
|23||Weeks, TJ||6-4||185||Fr.*||G||Warwick, RI / Woodstock Academy||Active|
* Eligibility difference.
2019-20 players lost:
Baptiste, Djery - Eligibility exhausted.
Buggs, John - Opted to transfer during the off-season.15)16)
Chatman, Sy - Transferred out after the Fall 2019 semester.17)18) Ultimately chose Illinois State.19)
Clergeot, Keon - Expected to graduate in Spring 2020, and has opted to transfer and play elsewhere as a grad student.20) Ultimately chose Southeastern Louisiana.21)
Diallo, Samba - Opted to transfer after the end of the season, will continue to play at Manhattan College.22)23)
East, Sean - Opted to transfer after the end of the season, will continue to play at Bradley.24)25)
Higginbottom, Davonte - expected to graduate in Spring 2020, would have college athletics eligibility left, but not expected to return.
Jackson, CJ - Opted to transfer after the end of the season.26) Ultimately chose Florida Southwestern State (JuCo)27)28)
West, Randall - Eligibility exhausted.
Back row (L to R): Ronnie DeGray (13), Dibaji Walker (24), Tre Mitchell (33), Mark Gasperini (10), Dyondre Dominguez (4), Cairo McCrory (5)
Front row (L to R): Brady Antonopoulos (00), Noah Fernandes (11), TJ Weeks (23), Carl Pierre (12), Kolton Mitchell (3), Javohn Garcia (1), Ryan Marcus (20)
Not available at time of photo: Preston Santos
|12/11||Fri||1:30||Northeastern||Mullins Center||–||NESN||NESN, ESPN+|
|12/13||Sun||Noon||at Northeastern||at Cabot Center, Boston MA||–||NESN||NESN|
|12/1629)||Wed||Noon||at La Salle||at Tom Gola Arena, Philadelphia PA||–||none||ESPN+|
|12/21||Mon||4:00||Bryant||Mullins Center||–||NESN||NESN, ESPN+|
|12/30||Wed||6:00||George Mason||Mullins Center||–||NESN||NESN, ESPN+|
|1/9||Sat||4:00||La Salle||Mullins Center||–||NBC Sports||NBC Sports|
|1/1330)||Wed||7:00||Rhode Island||Mullins Center||–||NESN||NESN, ESPN+|
|1/17||Sun||2:3031)||at Fordham||at Rose Hill Gym, Bronx NY||–||NBC Sports||NBC Sports|
|2/3||Wed||6:00||Fordham||Mullins Center||–||NESN||NESN, ESPN+|
|2/6||Sat||8:00||at Rhode Island||at the Ryan Center, Kingston RI||–||ESPN2||ESPN+|
|2/23||Tue||6:00||at Richmond||at the Robins Center, Richmond VA||–||NBC Sports Washington+||NBCSW, ESPN+|
|3/132)||Mon||6:00||at Saint Louis||at Chaifetz Arena, St. Louis MO||–||CBSSN||CBSSN|
|3/4||Thu||1:00||Saint Joseph's||at the Robins Center, Richmond VA||A-10 Tournament Second Round||NBC Sports||NBC Sports|
|3/5||Fri||1:00||Saint Louis||at the Robins Center, Richmond VA||A-10 Tournament Quarter-Final||NBC Sports||NBC Sports|
Everything this season was dependent on how the men's basketball program, the the University, the Atlantic 10 Conference, and the NCAA reacted to the threat of COVID-19 on health for all involved.
Keeping some notes here as details come together.
All of these possibilities were set before COVID hit. These matchups may no longer happen, or delayed into future season.