The 2010s: The Sunflower’s Wichita State men’s basketball All-Decade Teams


Joseph Barringhaus

File Photo: Wichita State senior Samajae Haynes-Jones watches the pregame video prior to a game last season inside Charles Koch Arena.

The 2010s brought tremendous success for the Wichita State men’s basketball team. During the decade, the team won an NIT Championship, went to seven NCAA Tournaments, including a Final Four run in 2013, started off the season 35-0 in 2014, and won multiple conference championships – both regular season and tournament. On top of that, five Shockers have played their way into the world’s most prestigious basketball league, the NBA.

The end of the decade also brought change to the program. In 2017, the Shockers moved away from the Missouri Valley Conference to join the more respected American Athletic Conference after not gaining the respect they wanted from the selection committees for various sports.

But none of this would’ve been possible without the players on the court. With that being said, The Sunflower’s Marshall Sunner and Sean Marty sat down and looked at the statistics. Here is The Sunflower’s men’s basketball All-Decade Teams.


Note: The All-Decade team was determined on individual performance over the course of a player’s best season — not by team success throughout their career. The statistics displayed are those from the player’s most outstanding year from the decade.


First Team

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PG: Fred VanVleet (2015) – 13.6 ppg, 5.2 apg, 4.5 rpg

Fred VanVleet will go down as one of the best players to have ever put on a Wichita State uniform. In 2015, VanVleet finished the year on the AP All-American team (Honorable Mention) and was First Team All-MVC.

During that season on Nov. 14, VanVleet tied a school-record after tallying seven steals against New Mexico State. On Feb. 26, he broke WSU’s all-time assist record. VanVleet was also one of 17 finalists for the Cousy Award, which is awarded to the nation’s top point guard.

In the NCAA Tournament, VanVleet was impressive. In the team’s first game against Indiana, VanVleet matched a career-high 27 points. Against Kansas, the point guard dropped 17 points against the 2-seed in route to a Sunflower State win — one of the most notable wins the program has had in the past decade. He followed with a 25-point performance in the loss to Notre Dame. –Marshall Sunner


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SG: Landry Shamet (2018) – 14.9 ppg, 5.2 apg, 3.2 rpg

Landry Shamet, even though he only played two years, helped set the future standard for the Shockers in the American Athletic Conference. As a redshirt sophomore, Shamet led the team in scoring at 14.9 points per game.

Coming into the year, the guard was selected to the Preseason First Team All-AAC and was one of 50 players named in the Preseason Wooden Award Watchlist, an award that is given to the country’s top player. Shamet scored a career-high 30 points against Oklahoma State on Dec. 9, 2017, which led to a 78-66 win in Stillwater.

By the end of the year, the sophomore was one of 25 midseason finalists for the Wooden Award and led the AAC in assists per game, true shooting percentage, and offensive box plus/minus rating. Following his career year, Shamet declared for the NBA Draft. He was picked No. 26 overall by the Philadelphia 76ers. –Marshall Sunner


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SF: Tekele Cotton (2014) – 10.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 2.4 apg

The numbers from Cotton’s career might not be the most eye-popping but the athletic wing was one of the most consistent players over the past decade. Cotton was a lock-down defender who Wichita State could count on to stop the other team’s best.

Cotton will always be remembered for his countless posterizing dunks or alley-oop finishes, but his defense is the main reason why he earned first-team honors. In his final two seasons at WSU, Cotton averaged 1.4 steals per game while also finishing with fifth-most steals over the course of his WSU career. In 2014, Cotton packed the stat sheet, and was a do-it-all guy for WSU.

Overall, Cotton is one of the best two-way players in the last decade and was also a huge part of the team’s 95 wins while he was a starter. Also, being one of the most athletic players in school history can’t hurt. -Sean Marty


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PF: Cleanthony Early (2014) – 16.4 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 0.8 apg

Cleanthony Early came to Wichita State as a hidden gem – a rather unknown junior college transfer. But in his short two year stint with the Shockers, he made an impact. In 2014 as a senior, Early led the team in scoring at 16.4 points per game.

Early was Preseason Player of the Year for the MVC and was named to the top-50 watch-lists for the Wooden Award and Nasmith Award for national player of the year. Early helped lead the Shockers to a 35-0 start and a 1-seed in the NCAA Tournament – the Shockers eventually lost to Kentucky in the second round of the tournament. In the game against Kentucky, Early left everything he had on the floor, posting an impressive 34 points and seven rebounds on 12-17 shooting.

Early was recognized for his efforts as a senior, getting drafted by the New York Knicks in the NBA Draft as the 34th overall pick (second round). -Marshall Sunner


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C: Shaquille Morris (2018) – 14.0 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 1.5 bpg

After his first three seasons in a Wichita State uniform, Morris would most likely not find his way on to the first team. This goes to show how much Morris developed into a superstar in Marshall’s system and overall as a player.

In his senior campaign, Morris set new career-highs in scoring (14 points per game), rebounding (5.6 rebounds per game), shot-blocking (1.5 blocks per game), while also introducing a three-shot to his game (39.1% from beyond the arc).

Morris served as the perfect big man for the prime years of the decade while becoming one of the most improved players since he got on campus as a freshman. –Sean Marty


Second Team

PG: Joe Ragland (2012) – 13.4 ppg, 3.3 apg, 2.9 rpg

Despite only playing two seasons in a Wichita State uniform, Ragland was one of the more efficient scorers, especially from the guard position.  In his senior campaign, Ragland went 59-117 from downtown, good enough for a 50.4% clip.

Not only did Ragland have one of the most efficient shooting seasons from beyond the arc, but he also showed a vast improvement in that jump shot. The season prior, Ragland went 30-96, 31.3%, and averaged only seven points per game. The following season, the junior college transfer bumped his scoring up to 13.4 points while improving his three-point percentage by 19.1%.

Ragland helped to start the decade of success for Wichita State, with an NIT championship along with ending the six year NCAA Tournament drought the following the season. In those two seasons, WSU went a combined 56-14 as they returned to national prominence. -Sean Marty


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SG: Ron Baker (2016) – 14.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 2.5 apg

When you think of Wichita State basketball, most people around the country associate it with Ron Baker and his play throughout the prime years in the early part of the decade. Baker was one of the more offensively-talented players of this decade of Shocker basketball tallying a career-high 14.7 points per game during his junior season.

Despite being one of the most prolific shooters in school history, Baker was underrated in terms of his ability to run the point at times during his career. For his career, Baker finished ninth in total assists with a total of 345 assists in his career.

Baker will always be remembered for his scoring over the course of his career and he made an impact in the Shocker record books. The Scott City, Kansas native finished eighth in scoring (1,636 points), second in three-pointers (242 three-point field goals made), and 11th in field goals (522 field goals made). -Sean Marty


SF: Toure’ Murry (2012) – 12.2 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 3.3 apg

Toure’ Murry was another four-year guy that helped build the future decade of success for Wichita State basketball. Murry finished his senior year with 12.2 points per game and helped lead the Shockers to the NCAA Tournament a year after winning the National Invitational Tournament.

At 6’5, 200 pounds, Murry saw his late career success transfer over to the next level. On Nov. 12, 2012, he was selected with the No. 15 pick in the NBA G-League draft – after not getting selected in the NBA Draft. The season after, Murry would work his way onto the New York Knicks roster. -Marshall Sunner


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PF: Markis McDuffie (2019) – 18.2 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.0 apg

Markis McDuffie went through plenty of ups and downs throughout his Wichita State career. But as a senior, McDuffie helped turn a broken season into the one to build off of going into the next decade.

By averaging 18.2 points per game, McDuffie led the Shockers to a 14-4 finish to the year, which included an NIT final four run in New York City. In the NIT, the Shockers became the first team in NIT history to defeat the No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 seeds on the road. McDuffie’s 21 points against Indiana in the historic Assembly Hall punched the team’s ticket to Madison Square Garden.

The end of season success, led by McDuffie and fellow senior Samajae Haynes-Jones, paved the way for future success for the program. The experience gained for the young guns during that late season run has propelled them to a 11-1 start heading into the 2020 calendar year and a No. 24 ranking in the AP Poll. Something that may not be the case without McDuffie’s career year last season. – Marshall Sunner


C: Carl Hall (2013) – 12.6 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.7 bpg

Similar to Ragland, Hall arrived in Wichita following two seasons at the junior college level. Hall fit right in as a more old-school type of power forward and did most of his work in the post.

Hall was a crucial member of the Final Four team in 2014, averaging 12.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks per game during his senior season. Hall’s 1.7 blocks per game is the eighth-highest single-season mark in school history.

One of Hall’s distinguishing characteristics was that of the Rec Specs that he wore throughout his WSU career. Hall exemplified that Play Angry mentality to bully his opponents on both the offensive and defensive side of the basketball. -Sean Marty


Honorable Mention: Malcolm Armstead, PG, 2013 (10.6 ppg, 4.0 apg, 3.8 rpg); Samajae Haynes-Jones, PG/SG, 2019 (11.9 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 2.7 apg); Rashard Kelly, F, 2018 (5.6 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 2.5 apg); Darius Carter, F, 2015 (11.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg); Garrett Stutz, C, 2012 (13.3 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 1.1 apg)