Like father, like son: Kellen Marshall hopes to rise into the coaching ranks


Hannah Roberts

Kellen Marshall holds up his piece of the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament Championship net. Kellen is Gregg Marshall’s son, and the head manager for the men’s basketball team.

Kellen Marshall, son of Gregg Marshall, had dreams of being a D-I basketball coach since he was 14 years old.

“I want to follow the same career path as my dad,” he said, “be an assistant for awhile and then work my way up and eventually become a head coach.”

Kellen, a sophomore at Wichita State, is currently putting his plans in action by working as the Shockers’ head basketball manager. His duties are operating the shot-clock and scoreboard in practices.

In game, his role switches to an off-the-court assistant coach. He keeps tabs on the play calls of the opposing team.

“I watch the coach or the point guard and I try to read their lips or see their hand signs,” he said. “I write their calls down then I put those calls into terms of what we do.”

With his assistance, he’s able to help the Shockers’ defense recognize the game strategy and find ways to stay ahead of a transition offense.

Kellen said he looks up to his dad, who, in his 10th season with the Shockers, is the program’s winningest coach.

I look up to my dad as far as coaching with the success that he’s had,” Kellen said. “He’s in a very small percentage of people that have had that much success.

“Both schools he’s coached at he’s the best coach to have ever coached there, so that’s pretty special.”

Working with the team has opened a lot of doors for Kellen, and Marshall’s success has helped him make many connections for Kellen’s future endeavors in the coaching industry.

His father doesn’t try to push coaching on his son. He wants his son to follow his heart.

“He’s a bright kid,” Gregg said. “I always try to talk him out of coaching but he has his heart set on it.

“He would be successful in anything he chooses to do.”