Chess team no longer the most famous program at UMBC after NCAA tournament stunner

So you are waking up this morning and wondering what in the name of James Naismith just happened in the NCAA tournament?

A No. 16 men’s seed finally beat a No. 1, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County of the America East Conference, 74-54 over Virginia of the ACC.

So now you are wondering what exactly is a UMBC. Well, let’s start with chess. The school is known for its chess legacy.

The chess program has won a record 10 Pan-American Intercollegiate championships and six National Collegiate team chess championships. Although, according to The Washington Post, it ended a streak of 16 consecutive years in the collegiate final four in December 2015.

Other fun facts about UMBC:

• The school sponsors seven men’s and eight women’s NCAA programs (chess is not an NCAA sport). It does not sponsor football.

• The basketball team plays in the Retriever Activities Center (RAC) Arena, which according to the team website, opened in 1973 as the UMBC Fieldhouse. It seats 4,024.

• According to the America East website, UMBC has three former basketball players in professional leagues: one each in England, Germany and the Czech Republic.

• UMBC is located outside the Baltimore beltway with a fall 2017 enrollment of 13,662 (undergraduate 11,234, graduate 2,428, full-time 10,669, part-time 2,993, male 7,446, female 6,216), according to its website. The 2017-18 tuition, room and board and fees: Resident Tuition $11,264, Non-Resident Tuition $24,492, Room & Board $11,836.

• The athletic teams’ nickname is not just Retrievers but Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, and the colors are black and gold.

• The school president is Freeman A. Hrabowski, III. His research and publications focus on science and math education, with special emphasis on minority participation and performance.

• UMBC is part of the University of Maryland system and, in fact, lost to the Maryland Terps, 66-45, in December. Maryland did not make the NCAA tournament.

• Famous alumni include actress Kathleen Turner and Dan Patrick — not that Dan Patrick but the Dan Patrick who is Lt. Gov. of Texas.

• Want to watch their next men’s basketball game: It is Sunday against ninth-seeded Kansas State on truTV, after the conclusion of the 5:15 p.m. North Carolina-Texas A&M game.

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *