Scrolling Headlines:

‘Stopping Genocide and Mass Atrocities by Stopping the War Profiteers’ talk at UMass -

February 19, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 6 UMass Lowell for third time this season -

February 18, 2017

UMass hockey breakdown in final minutes of the second period on route to 5-2 loss to UMass Lowell -

February 18, 2017

Notebook: Jack Gibbs stars as UMass men’s basketball team drops game to Davidson Saturday -

February 18, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops another close game, falls to Davidson Saturday afternoon -

February 18, 2017

Local blogger Larry Kelley dies in car crash, remembered by community -

February 18, 2017

REPORT: UMass football to name Ed Pinkham as next defensive coordinator -

February 18, 2017

UMass students skip class to stand in solidarity with undocumented immigrants and refugees -

February 18, 2017

NPR Education Correspondent Eric Westervelt talks on future of education -

February 18, 2017

Faculty of journalism department discusses failures of journalism during Trump era -

February 16, 2017

UMass hockey prepares for third and final match-up against No. 6 UMass Lowell on Saturday -

February 16, 2017

Panelists hold discussion on embodying global coalitions -

February 16, 2017

Journalist speaks on criminalization of youth in the United States -

February 16, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse heads to Florida in search of first win of 2017 -

February 16, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse looks to get offense back on track against Ohio State -

February 16, 2017

Duquesne stomps UMass men’s basketball 96-66 in Pittsburgh -

February 16, 2017

UMass softball focuses on mental approach ahead of Madeira Beach Invitational -

February 16, 2017

UMass women’s basketball drops eighth straight in loss at Richmond -

February 16, 2017

‘50 Shades Darker’ steams up all windows in the nation -

February 16, 2017

’20th Century Women’ is a love letter to women across generations -

February 16, 2017

Brison Gresham makes long awaited debut for UMass men’s basketball

(Robert Rigo/ Daily Collegian)

(Robert Rigo/ Daily Collegian)

Brison Gresham’s days of having to watch the Massachusetts men’s basketball team play from the bench are over. The freshman forward/center was cleared by NCAA before practice on Tuesday and found himself in uniform and on the court for the Minutemen’s home game against Wagner Wednesday night.

Having already missed UMass’ first five games, Gresham was not completely sure if he’d play at all this season.

“It was like 50/50,” Gresham said. “I was like on the edge a little bit. But in the back of my mind, my mom kept telling me to just keep praying so that’s all I was doing.”

Gresham admitted that he was nervous entering the game and it showed in the three minutes he played. The 6-foot-9 big man fumbled a pass in the paint resulting in a turnover and had to be reminded on a couple of occasions by a screaming Derek Kellogg that the press defense required him to stay up front on the opponent’s impound pass. Two missed free throws didn’t make anything better either.

Though his inexperience and nerves showed, Gresham still managed to smirk during the game and laugh after it.

Gresham believes his efforts in practice will translate into more productive and consistent performances.

“I definitely can do a lot of things in practice,” Gresham said. “Just rebounding everybody. I felt like the three minutes I did have I could have done a lot of stuff. I just was off a little bit, loopy, got the jitters in me.”

A New Orleans native and long-time teammate of freshman guard DeJon Jarreau, Gresham was the No. 7 ranked center in Louisiana according to ESPN.

Despite his accolades in high school, Gresham did not yet seem to be caught up with the pace of the game Wednesday night.

“Yea, like now I’m being in front of the press, so I’m used to everybody just getting back,” Gresham said. “Now I gotta stay up front so that’s something my body gotta get used to.”

“It’s a whole different ball game when you step on the floor,” Kellogg said. “You can’t really breathe when you’re out there for the first time. You’re trying to figure out what’s going on.”

Kellogg understands that Gresham, like the other freshman will be trying to earn minutes. Kellogg looks at this as a positive thing.

“(Gresham) is gonna be playing and trying to get him minutes, within the context of we’re trying to win basketball,” Kellogg said. “I’m trying to get Chris (Baldwin) more playing time. I’m trying to get Ty (Flowers) more playing time. I’m trying to get Brison in. I think those guys when the league play comes around can be helpful to us. If you go in and the score goes from up four to down two that’s tough for me to keep you in, so there’s a delicate balance. I’m continuously talking to the team about not everybody’s going to get everything they want playing-wise or shot wise, but if the team’s doing well, I think we all can deal with that.”

Philip Sanzo can be reached at psanzo@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @Philip_Sanzo.

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