Smaller programs are always as hungry for success as teams that come from perceived power-conferences. It seems like each year, however, the gap between “smaller” programs and historical powers are getting much smaller. It is as if the world of college basketball is becoming less about the have and have-nots, but more about everyone having something — anything that makes them as dangerous as anyone in the country.
Most programs rely on coaches to help them achieve whatever level of success they set out to obtain. It is strange though, because whenever a smaller program has success, that coach is all of a sudden thrust into every big-time coach opening in the country. The small schools become a victim of their own success to some point.
That is where the Wichita State Shockers and their head coach, Gregg Marshall, come in. Obviously, the Shockers had great success under Marshall’s leadership just this past season. Taking the program to the Final Four was monumental, but for Wichita State, the run made it obvious that they were going to have to open their checkbooks a little bit.
Marshall has gone on the record as saying he loves coaching for Wichita State. He has also said that he is not going to look for other jobs and that only the “perfect” situation would even tempt him from leaving. Most coaches say those kind of things when rumors start to swirl around them. They are just trying to be politically correct while leaving little loopholes for their eventual escape.
For Marshall, however, he has also stated that perceived bigger programs no longer offer that much more money than schools like the one he is currently with — making it look like he might actually be genuine in his statements about staying for the long-term.
I don’t know if Marshall has a dream job out there, but if he doesn’t, it is not inconceivable that he could end up being with the Shockers longer than anyone would expect.
Joe is a Senior Writer for Rant Sport. Follow him on Twitter @JosephNardone