This one has been out there for weeks – UMass finally made it official today. Here’s the release:
University of Massachusetts men’s basketball head coach Frank Martin announced the hire of assistant coach Brett Nelson on Wednesday afternoon. Nelson joins the Massachusetts staff after spending the last four seasons as the head coach at Holy Cross.
“Extremely excited to introduce Brett Nelson as an assistant coach on our staff here at UMass,” said Martin. “Brett, who I was fortunate to coach in AAU basketball, had an incredible high school career culminating as a McDonald’s All-American. He followed that up with a great career at Florida, where he helped the Gators reach the national championship game in 2000. After his playing days, he’s gone on to build himself a tremendous resume as a basketball coach with incredible stops at numerous institutions, including being the associate head coach at Marquette for Steve Wojciechowski when they rebuilt their program and went to the NCAA Tournament. He has spent the last four years as the head coach at Holy Cross. He will add tremendous value and knowledge to our staff and to our players.”
Prior to his time at Holy Cross, Nelson spent five seasons at Marquette including the last two as the associate head coach. The Golden Eagles made two NCAA Tournament appearances and went 24-10 with a second-place finish in the Big East in Nelson’s final season as associate head coach. Nelson spent the 2013-14 season as the associate head coach at Ball State following two seasons at Drake and one at Arkansas. Nelson began his collegiate coaching career at Marshall from 2007-10.
“I am extremely grateful and excited for this opportunity to be with Coach Martin and everyone involved with the program,” said Nelson. “UMass has a great basketball history and I look forward to helping build and bring value to continue this tradition.”
A 2004 graduate of Florida, Nelson was a three-year starter for the Gators and helped his team to four NCAA Tournaments and to the 2000 national championship game. The two-time all-SEC and third-team all-America selection concluded his collegiate playing career as Florida’s all-time leader in 3-pointers made while ranking second in steals and 14th in points. Nelson played professionally in Sweden following his time at Florida.