It’s become a rite of spring.
Will Gregg Marshall stay at Wichita State or will he be wooed away by one of the Power 5 Conference schools?
WSU fans are certainly sweating bullets as Marshall’s name is an automatic now when it comes to job openings.
Indiana fans are certainly lusting for the Hoosiers to back up the truck and offer Marshall the keys to the city. Indiana, despite its recent failings, is still considered college basketball royalty, that small select group of blue bloods that also includes Kansas, Duke, Kentucky, North Carolina, UCLA and, in my opinion, Michigan State.
Now that Brad Underwood had 2 million reasons to leave Oklahoma State for Illinois (tough to pass up a raise like that), the Cowboys’ job is open as well.
Despite all his success in the Air Capital City, Marshall experiences angst. The Missouri Valley Conference fell off drastically this year after WSU and Illinois State. Illinois State didn’t even make the NCAA Tournament despite going 17-1 in the MVC, which drew an outcry from Marshall.
I’m sure the Shockers have tried to schedule up. Kansas wants nothing to do with them as Bill Self supposedly has said it’s a no-win situation for his team and you can just bet he would want every meeting at Allen Field House if they do play. Kansas State also wants to avoid the Shockers as that mid-major stigma is a scheduling hurdle.
Marshall’s team had an amazing season and this may have been his best coaching job. To win 30 games after losing All-America types like Ron Baker and Fred VanVleet is phenomenal. The Shockers won a game in the NCAA Tournament and then stared Kentucky right in the eye before finally blinking. I’m sure John Calipari would just as soon not play the Shockers again, because they have met twice in the tourney and both times WSU nearly shocked the Wildcats.
It’s amazing a school WSU’s size can continually raise Marshall’s salary, especially since there’s no football revenue. It’s obvious they don’t want to lose him because the guy can flat-out coach. I’ve heard some commentators say they believe if he could recruit McDonald’s All-Americans like the blue bloods, he could be cutting down the nets in April.
The Shockers will only be better next year. They basically have everybody back and Marshall certainly will add a piece or two to the puzzle. They still need to get bigger inside, but on the perimeter they can match up with about anybody they play.
The Marshall rumors will start swirling in earnest any day and for Shocker fans, hang on to your horseshoes and start picking some 4-leaf clovers.