For the love of UMass and Football
Longtime UMass Amherst supporter and alumnus Martin Jacobson and his brother, Richard, are making an impact that will last for generations to come. The brothers and business partners have committed $2.5 million to the university which will honor them by naming the new Martin and Richard Jacobson Press and Skybox Complex at McGuirk Alumni Stadium.
In a ceremony featuring UMass Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy, Athletics Director John McCutcheon, and Head Football Coach Charley Molnar, Jacobson stated that the chance to make a difference during this new era in UMass history following the university's transition to the Football Bowl Subdivision was the impetus for the gift.
"I've been a huge proponent that athletics enhance the value of going to a state university," said Jacobson. "I enjoyed my time at the university and the fact that we are now able to play FBS football each Saturday is very exciting. UMass is building a program that my brother Dick and I are thrilled about and to help in this way is something that gives us great gratification."
A 1968 graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Isenberg School of Management, Jacobson has been a long-time supporter of UMass Athletics. His brother Richard (Dick) is a 1966 graduate of the University of Michigan and also a UMass Football fan and supporter. Marty and Dick found success working together as businessmen. Their sports apparel company Nutmeg Industries, Inc., created upscale sportswear with licensing agreements that included the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, MLB, the NCAA and major colleges and universities.
"What's particularly exciting for me is doing this with my brother. He and I have done things together throughout our business careers," said Jacobson. "We believe in giving back, and even though Dick went to Michigan and I went to UMass, it was important to do something to help people for many years to come. Our hope is that by giving back, others will come forward and join us. I would like to see the whole community get behind the program. The whole value of sports, I believe, adds to the value of going to the University of Massachusetts."
"Marty's generosity is absolutely fantastic," said Chancellor Subbaswamy. "We are going through our sesquicentennial year and we are continuing to build up our football program at the FBS level. A gift like this not only helps us accomplish our high aspirations but it also makes a tremendous statement about the confidence people who have been a part of the university have in our future. For our program at this time, it is a boost in the arm that has a value even beyond the dollars."
The Martin & Richard Jacobson Football Press and Skybox Complex is part of a $34.5 million enhancement project at McGuirk Alumni Stadium. The press box will be a 5,800 square foot space designed to accommodate a range of media with the primary focus on television production accessibility. The new press box will replace the one originally built for the stadium in 1965 when the Minutemen began using the facility.
Jacobson's gift is another highlight of the UMass Rising campaign. To date, the Athletics Department has raised $20.15 million towards its $33 million goal (61 percent) as part of the campaign. The athletics portion of the campaign will go towards supporting facilities through capital projects, supporting student-athletes with endowments, supporting the 21 intercollegiate programs, and annual support for The Minutemen Club.