What’s the secret to Wichita State’s winning streak? Players have their superstitions


Joseph Barringhaus

Wichita State freshman Erik Stevenson and forward Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler celebrate after a basket is made during the game against Tulane on Feb. 9, 2019 at Charles Koch Arena. (Photo by Joseph Barringhaus/The Sunflower).

Erik Stevenson wants a say regarding which jerseys the Shockers roll out with.

Why? Because Wichita State has rolled to a four-game winning streak after losing its first six out of seven games in conference play. And after a dragging start to conference play, Stevenson doesn’t want to rule out any factors.

“We’ve got to keep wearing the yellows,” Stevenson said Saturday following the team’s 15-point win over Tulane. Stevenson doesn’t have to look far to pinpoint the source of his suspicion.

Joseph Barringhaus
Wichita State guard Erik Stevenson sticks his tongue out after making a three-point basket during the game against Tulane on Feb. 9, 2019 at Charles Koch Arena. (Photo by Joseph Barringhaus/The Sunflower).

With a win on Saturday against Tulane, the Shockers are currently riding a four-game winning streak heading into Sunday’s matchup with Cincinnati. The Shockers have won the last four games all wearing the team’s yellow alternate jerseys.

All five of WSU’s conference wins this year have come when the team wears the yellow jerseys. More so, since the early season loss to Alabama, the Shockers haven’t lost a game when wearing the yellow jerseys. Overall, they’re 6-1 with the alternates (7-1 if you count the team’s preseason exhibition game). 

What’s more shocking is that WSU has lost its last seven games when wearing its white or black uniforms.

When asked about who makes the jersey decision, Stevenson was quick to answer.

“It should be me,” he said.

“I’ve seen it,” senior Markis McDuffie said. “Everyone’s taken notice. Sometimes, basketball takes some luck.”

Joseph Barringhaus
Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall reminds the ref three free throws should be given after a call is reversed during the game on Jan. 30, 2019 against SMU. (Photo by Joseph Barringhaus/The Sunflower).

Coach Gregg Marshall has noticeably removed his glasses and opted for contacts, too, during the team’s four-game winning streak. He told reporters Tuesday that he’s “purposely misplaced” his glasses before the team’s last four games. 

WSU will resume play after an eight-day break. The Shockers hit the road, completing a home-and-away series at Cincinnati on Sunday.

Joseph Barringhaus
Wichita State stands for the National Anthem before the game against Tulsa at Charles Koch Arena on Feb. 2, 2019. (Photo by Joseph Barringhaus/The Sunflower).

— Evan Pflugradt contributed to this story