Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s track and field takes first, men fourth at Joe Donahue Games -

January 20, 2018

Sanzo: UMass’ game vs. St. Louis is a sign of what it is without its grit -

January 20, 2018

UMass men’s basketball gets blown out by Saint Louis, 66-47 -

January 20, 2018

UMass hockey shuts down No. 8 Northeastern with 3-0 win -

January 19, 2018

Matt Murray hands Northeastern its first shutout of the season -

January 19, 2018

Minutewomen stunned by last-second free throw -

January 19, 2018

UMass hockey returns home to battle juggernaut Northeastern squad -

January 18, 2018

Slow start sinks Minutemen against URI -

January 17, 2018

UMass three-game win streak snapped in Rhode Island humbling -

January 17, 2018

Trio of second period goals leads Maine to 3-1 win over UMass hockey -

January 16, 2018

Small-ball lineup sparks UMass men’s basketball comeback over Saint Joseph’s -

January 14, 2018

UMass men’s basketball tops St. Joe’s in wild comeback -

January 14, 2018

UMass women’s track and field have record day at Beantown Challenge -

January 14, 2018

UMass women’s basketball blows halftime lead to Saint Joseph’s, fall to the Hawks 84-79. -

January 14, 2018

UMass hockey beats Vermont 6-3 in courageous win -

January 13, 2018

Makar, Leonard score but UMass can only muster 2-2 tie with Vermont -

January 13, 2018

Pipkins breaks UMass single game scoring record in comeback win over La Salle -

January 10, 2018

Conservative student activism group sues UMass over free speech policy -

January 10, 2018

Report: Makar declines invite from Team Canada Olympic team -

January 10, 2018

Prince Hall flood over winter break -

January 10, 2018

Victor Cruz pays visit to UMass

Jeff Bernstein/Collegian

Jeff Bernstein/Collegian

Fresh off of his recent Super Bowl victory two weeks ago, a familiar face made a pit stop to the Mullins Center on Tuesday night to pay his alma mater a visit.

Victor Cruz, the New York Giants sensation and former Massachusetts football star, sat courtside as he watched the men’s basketball team defeat Xavier, 80-73, to move into a tie for third place in the Atlantic 10.

Cheers filled the arena in response to any sighting of him. The occasional, elongated “Cruz” chant let out by UMass faithful and a collective media storm swept over him as he made his way through crowds for the majority of the game.

He even had a chance to judge a salsa-dancing competition at halftime in which three students received the opportunity to show their moves at midcourt. The dance has been much publicized recently and a trademark of Cruz’s, who made it popular this season when he made it his signature touchdown celebration.

“It’s definitely been surreal, it’s definitely just been a whirlwind, and I’m just soaking in all of the moments and all the times I get to enjoy it,” said Cruz of the aftermath of the Super Bowl win.

Even through all of the emotions of the Super Bowl win, Cruz felt at home during his return to the Pioneer Valley, and noted how different it was to see people wearing his No. 80 jersey in the stands and even a blown up fat-head of his face in the student section.

“It’s crazy seeing all of the jerseys and t-shirts,” said Cruz. “It just shows kind of how far I’ve come and how much I’ve done to change the culture around here.”

Although he said he didn’t get to see most of the game, he was also impressed with the play of the basketball team on the court.
“From what I’ve seen, Chaz Williams has done an outstanding job and from what I hear this whole season,” said Cruz. “I hear we’re on the verge of doing some really good things. I’m excited for our basketball team.”

Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette contributed to this report.

Stephen Hewitt can be reached at shewitt@student.umass.edu and followed on Twitter @MDC_Hewitt.

 

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