Seeking validation, Gregg Marshall prepares for personal battle Sunday

“It took a loss to validate our team, which I think is really ironic and sad.”


Brian Hayes

Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall talks to CBS news anchor after the Shockers’ 64 – 58 victory over the Dayton Flyer at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. (Mar. 17, 2017)

Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall knows his team is routinely undervalued come March. No matter his successes, he doesn’t seem to have validation from national media.

In 2014, while Marshall fought the line of if his 34-0 Shockers were deserving of the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

The selection committee slotted a way too good Kentucky team as the No. 8 seed to evaluate how good Gregg Marshall’s team really was.

“But in the end, it took a loss to validate our team, which I think is really ironic and sad,” Marshall said.

Kentucky, as Marshall expected, prevailed. Wichita State guard Fred VanVleet missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to win the game.

For the second time in the two schools’ history they’ll meet on the hardwood.

We’re not a number one seed, we’re a 10-seed,” Wichita State forward Zach Brown said was the major difference between the game in 2014 and Sunday.  

Wichita State in the last four years has a perfect record against No. 2 seeds in the tournament.

“We’re excited, and this will be a great opportunity for us,” Marshall said.

Wichita State players all remember the game. No Shocker played in the game. Few Kentucky players could recount even a few details from the game. In Marshall’s personal opinion, Sunday is his own battle.

“The bottom line is the only two guys that remember that game, other than you media people, are Coach Cal and I. Everyone else is new,” Marshall said. “There might have been a couple of my guys that were freshmen at that point, but can’t think of too many that played in that game that are going to be playing.”