Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette spent some time with Freddie Riley last week and wrote the following story on the senior from Ocala, Fla.
Freddie Riley's friends do a double take when they see his University of Massachusetts student identification card.
The picture was taken when he got it almost four years ago during orientation before his freshman year. The young man in the picture has short hair and a clean-shaven face, a kid away from home for the first time, about to start the next chapter of his life.
It doesn't much resemble the man it belongs to anymore. Riley, now a senior guard for the Minutemen, has dreadlocks that fall beyond his shoulders. He has a mustache, a chin beard and sideburns that frame his face.
"When I meet someone new they're like 'Whoa that's you?'" Riley said.
It was him. But the Freddie Riley who will be in the starting lineup at 9 tonight when UMass takes on George Washington in the Atlantic 10 Tournament neither looks like nor feels like the young Floridian in that picture from the summer of 2009.
The UMass basketball team is down to its final two regular-season games, beginning with Thursday's home finale against Butler. While the Minutemen can't secure one of the four first round byes in next week's A-10 Tournament, they can make a statement on the national scene in regards to postseason play with the remainder of their schedule.
The doors will open at 5:30 tonight. The UMass football team and Mullins Militia will lead the "March to Mullins" tonight as the heavy student base will gather near the Southwest dormitories at approximately 5:15 p.m. and walk as one to the Student entrance at the south end of the arena.
Behind 18 points from Freddie Riley and 13 points from Maxie Esho, the UMass basketball team cruised past Eastern Michigan 75-61 on Saturday afternoon at the Mullins Center. A season-high 44 pct. effort from behind the arc paced the Minutemen thanks in part to Riley's 6-of-9 shooting performance.
Chaz Williams led four players in double figures, while Jesse Morgan and Freddie Riley drained four 3-pointers each as the Minutemen picked up an 88-81 win over East Carolina on Saturday. Here are some recaps and sidebars from the game. The team is off for a week until they travel to Northern Illinois next Saturday afternoon.
Stephen Hewitt of the Massachusetts Daily Collegian has an article on shooting guard Freddie Riley. The senior from Ocala, Fla. had a strong game in the exhibition opener against American International, but has gone just 2-for-10 from outside during the first four games of the regular season.
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has an update on basketball practice and some notebook items about the preseason. He has quotes from Chaz Williams and Freddie Riley about the excitement leading up to the season, along with info from coach Kellogg on scheduling and early games.
AMHERST -- Before his sophomore season, University of Massachusetts guard Freddie Riley was frustrated about everyone's lack of optimism surrounding the Minutemen. Preview magazines, newspaper articles and even fans had low expectations for the 2010-11 squad and Riley took it to heart.
Two years later, coming off the team's run to the National Invitation Tournament's semifinals, there's a positive vibe surrounding the Minutemen. The preview magazines that are already out and national websites are projecting UMass to finish among the top teams in the Atlantic 10 and perhaps reach the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1998. There's a buzz on campus among students greater than at any previous time.
National college basketball writer and television announcer Jon Rothstein offered up his thoughts on UMass as it prepares for the 2012-13 season. Leading off with a note on junior PG Chaz Williams' infectious energy that envelops the entire team.
Chaz Williams is a like a magnet. The undersized point guard has an infectious personality -- and it's easily noticeable if you're in the gym with him for even just a matter of moments. The 5-9 Williams was one of the best players in the Atlantic 10 a season ago and figures to be so again thanks to the biggest weapon he has -- his heart.
Yesterday we posted a video interview (see below) with head coach Derek Kellogg about
the work his program has done with sport psychologist Joe Carr. Today, UMass
beat writer Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has an in-depth story
about Dr. Carr's visit, dubbed "Brotherhood 2.0."
The Minutemen adopted the word a year ago when they met
with sports psychologist Joe Carr for preseason meetings that helped bond the
team and coaching staff together. On Tuesday, Riley and the rest of the UMass
players again met with Carr for "Brotherhood 2.0" sessions.
"Dr. Carr was a big part of the success we had last
year," UMass coach Derek Kellogg said. "It helped formulate our team,
and defined roles and the bonding of the brotherhood that we had."
"In July we have more time to implement the things we
want to implement and the new guys are getting a taste of how serious this is.
We want to do something special," he added. "It's been good for those
guys to get acclimated. It's been great to get to know them on a personal
level. It's a comforting kind of atmosphere where you know everyone in there is
there for you and part of your family."
UMass overcame an 11-point second-half deficit to pull out an 82-78 win over Siena on Friday night in the Hall of Fame Holiday Showcase at the Mass Mutual Center. Freddie Riley continued his streak of hot shooting draining six three-pointers for 20 points, while Chaz Williams tied his career-high with 22 points (20 in the second half).
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette recaps last night's big 36-point victory by the men's basketball team at Boston College to win the Commonwealth Classic by the biggest margin ever.
"This was a big game for us," Freddie Riley said. "It's a rivalry game. They beat us the last couple of years. They have a younger team and we have an older team. We just played hard and we got a win."
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has a story in Thursday's edition on UMass junior shooting guard Freddie Riley, who is expected to start for the Minutemen in their season opener on Friday night at 9 p.m. at the Curry Hicks Cage. The story talks about how the Ocala, Fla. native is confident going into his junior season and taking over the shooting guard spot from Anthony Gurley.
"If you don't have confidence in yourself, it's hard for other people to have confidence in you. If you think negative, then you're probably going to have negative results," Riley said. "If you work hard and keep a positive attitude, things are going to go your way eventually. You're not going to have a good shooting night every night, but if you get down on yourself, you're just making it hard on yourself. You want to keep a positive attitude through everything."
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has a story on Derek Kellogg indicating at UMass media day on Friday that the starting five for the Minutemen's season opener this Friday against Elon at the Curry Hicks Cage could be Chaz Williams, Freddie Riley, Javorn Farrell, Raphiael Putney, and Sean Carter. The Minutemen played their second and final closed scrimmage of the season on Saturday at Seton Hall.
Vautour also points out some jersey number changes for the Minutemen this season. Check out the online roster.
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette takes an in-depth look today at the UMass men's basketball lineup and who could potentially take over more of a scoring role for the Minutemen in 2011-12. Vautour goes through each player, saying why he's a candidate to increase his scoring, and what could possibly prevent that. An interesting read for UMass fans.
The UMass men's basketball team and coaching staff were out in the community on Tuesday night when they attended the renovated basketball court dedication and barbecue at St. Brigid's Church in Amherst. The event, which was open to the public, was hosted by Fr. John Smegal and gave the local kids a chance to meet the 2011-12 Minutemen. Check out the video below.
On the UMass Basketball Radio Show, head coach Derek Kellogg gave an update on the injury statuses of Sean Carter and Freddie Riley. Carter is nursing a hyper-extended elbow and Riley is hurting with a right foot/ankle swelling.
Both players are "questionable to out" according to coach.
Shoes are more than just athletic footwear in basketball culture. They're fashion statements, status symbols and collectors' items. For professional players, getting a signature shoe separates the elite players from the rest.
UMass sophomore Freddie Riley has two pairs of white shoes that he wears only in games, with similar phrases on both. They serve as a tribute, a memorial to people he cares about living and dead, and a window into a difficult past he's trying to put behind him.
The Atlantic 10 has ruled that Freddie Riley will not be suspended for Saturday's game at Saint Joseph's as originally thought. The A-10 said that because the flagrant foul was not with a closed fist or with a fight, Riley will not be suspended.
It would have been a big game under any circumstance for Freddie Riley. The University of Massachusetts sophomore guard has had a difficult time finding an offensive rhythm all year so 18 points in any game would certainly have been welcomed.
But it meant more Wednesday. Late Tuesday night, Riley's brother told him that their friend Antonio "T.J." Gordon had been shot and killed in an incident outside of a bowling alley in Riley's hometown of Ocala, Fla. Before Wednesday's game with Charlotte, Riley quietly dedicated his performance to the memory of his friend.
"I decided to dedicate the game to him after one of my younger friends called me (Wednesday afternoon) and was crying," he said. "It hurt him really bad because they were really close."
Ron Chimelis has three stories on the men's basketball team including a column on Freddie Riley and all of the personal adversity he has dealt with since Tuesday. The Republican also has an update on the Daryl Traynham suspension.
Here are stories on the UMass basketball team as the Minutemen prepare to face Sacred Heart tonight at the Mullins Center. The Daily Collegian ran its 2010-11 season preview with tons of coverage on the Maroon & White.
The Bud Light UMass Basketball Radio Show returns to the airwaves tonight at 7 p.m. Listen to the show on 100.9 WRNX or join us at the Hangar Pub & Grill. Sophomore guard Freddie Riley will be the guest as he will talk about his big night on Friday with 28 points along with head coach Derek Kellogg.
A year ago, the four University of Massachusetts freshmen didn't know just how much they didn't know.
As they prepared for the 2009-10 season, the rookies - Terrell Vinson, Javorn Farrell, Freddie Riley and Sampson Carter - all declared the freshman class ready for prime time.
At times they looked the part. Each had promise-revealing moments during their first collegiate season in which all four played a lot of minutes. But over the course of the year the Minutemen freshmen played like freshmen.
Now sophomores, the quartet is considerably more seasoned and wiser about what to expect.
Big day down at the Basketball Hall of Fame as the Enshrinements of the Class of 2010 is nearing ... UMass head coach Derek Kellogg along with sophomores Freddie Riley and Terrell Vinson are down at the Hall and have had the chance to see and meet the likes of 1992 Dream Team members Charles Barkley, Magic Johnson, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Chris Mullin, Larry Bird, David Robinson and Scottie Pippen as well as "The Logo" Jerry West.
Here's a photo from @TerrellVinson, his twitter page.
UMass sophomore Freddie Riley scored 30 points last night as the Springfield Slamm lost in Pro-Am Basketball, 125-118 to the Fairview All-Stars. Riley nailed four 3-pointers including three in a row in the first half. Fellow Minuteman Sampson Carter had 10 points and five rebounds. The Springfield Republican has a small story on the game.