Frank Martin, UMass Basketball Make Splash: Land Four-Star Recruit

Frank Martin made his first splash as head coach of the Minutemen

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August 10

The Frank Martin era at UMass is off to a hot start.

Martin and the Minutemen landed their first four-star recruit in three years on Wednesday, with Class of 2022 recruit Tafara Gapare announcing his intention to play in Amherst this fall.

“I chose UMass because during the recruitment process, coach Frank Martin built a relationship with me and my family and it felt genuine, real, and not forced,” Gapare told Joe Tipton of On3. “What he values as a person and coach matched the same type of energy I’ve been looking for as a person and player. I feel like I’ll be utilized the right way on the court and I’ll grow more off the court.”

Gapare is the first big recruit to commit to UMass since Martin’s arrival in March 2022, but he isn’t the first big-time addition to the program. Martin lured in five transfers to join the Minutemen in 2022-23, including former four-star recruits Matt Cross and Rahsool Diggings.

The additions are welcomed for a UMass program that has been stuck in mediocrity for a long time. UMass has only reached the NCAA Tournament twice in the last 25 seasons, filtering through five different coaches before landing on Martin for the upcoming season. The addition of Gapare could put an end to that streak.

“UMass will be getting a chess piece, a player that you can use in many ways on the court,” Gapare said. “A player who wants to help the players around him shine just as much as I want to. A player with no ego and loves to play selfless basketball. I’m all about team goals over personal goals. I’m someone who puts the team first before myself as a player in-game. I bring a lot of length and versatility to a team. Also, I can start the fast break, space the floor and I love setting up my teammates first. I can play from the post as well and see the floor or score.

“To the fans of the Minutemen at UMass, the love and support has been great. Let’s tell these people who we are and claim the Atlantic 10!”

UMass made it to the quarterfinals of the A10 tournament in 2022 and with the addition of Gapare, Cross and Diggings, they’re sure to make a push to win the whole thing.

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