WSU honors its four seniors following conference championship


Kaylee Stout / The Sunflower

Wichita State seniors pose with their framed jerseys after a game against South Florida during senior night at Charles Koch Arena on March 6

As Wichita State hosted its final home game of the season on Saturday and wrapped up a conference championship, it also gave the team the opportunity to honor its seniors. 

WSU had four seniors on its roster this season which included Alterique Gilbert, Trey Wade, Brycen Bush and Jacob Herrs. All four seniors will have the option to return next season as the NCAA is giving them an extra year of eligibility but Herrs and Bush have already announced they will be moving on after the season.

Here is what each of the four seniors had to say about playing their (possible) final game inside Charles Koch Arena:

Alterique Gilbert

Gilbert spent the least amount of time at WSU amongst the group but his impact was felt immediately this season. Gilbert, arrived at WSU through the graduate transfer route after playing the last four seasons at Connecticut.

“It’s just a blessing for me to wake up and play the sport of basketball,” Gilbert said. “Let alone what I’m doing with this great group of guys, great coaching staff and I’m in a place I feel comfortable. That helps a lot. Now we’re just going to take it day by day, still focusing on everything we need to focus on and just enjoy this moment and then look forward to the conference tournament.”

Gilbert had his most healthy season of his career yet, playing in all 17 games this year. At the start of his college basketball career, Gilbert suffered a torn labrum and a shoulder injury that limited him to nine games in his first two seasons.

As a result, next week will be the first that he plays in a conference tournament.

“It was a great time for God to show his presence in my life,” Gilbert said. “For me, this is big, just to come here and win a conference championship. Now we’re on our way to the conference tournament, I’ll be playing my first conference (tournament) game. So, I’m just excited. Everyday for me it gets better.”

Gilbert said he has not made a decision for next year and is just trying to take things day-by-day. 

“When I was younger, I used to worry about the future a lot,” Gilbert said. “It gave me a type of anxiety that I didn’t like. So I always try to think in the moment. When that time comes then I’ll make that decision.”

Trey Wade 

Wade spent the past two seasons with the Shockers after arriving as a junior college transfer. Wade was joined by his younger brother, Trevin, on this year’s team. 

Wade said that with all the adversity this year’s team faced it was nice to wrap it up with a conference tournament. 

“Just all the adversity that we’ve been through and seeing how things turned out and still being on top. I think that’s the biggest thing. We’ve been through so much and we just stuck to the process. We stuck to it and believed in each other and just ran with it.”

On Thursday, Wade scored a career-high 23 points against Tulane. Head Coach Isaac Brown said Wade’s performance was a credit due to the hard work he puts in off the court.

“Even when he wasn’t shooting the ball well, he put in the work after practice, he would stay and shoot 200-300 jumpers,” Brown said. “I’m just so happy for him that he was able to put in the work and go out there and make some shots tonight.”

Wade also is yet to announce his decision for next season but teammate Dexter Dennis said he’ll support each of the seniors no matter what decision they make.

“That would be special but I think it’d be special either way for me because whatever they choose to do is fine with me,” Dennis said. “They’re just great people, great players. If they decide it’s their time then it’s their time. Either way I’m going to support them.”

Brycen Bush

Bush spent the past four seasons as a walk-on for the program after graduating from nearby Eisenhower High School. Like his older brother Zach, Bush also decided to become a walk-on at WSU. 

Bush said it was a great feeling to win a conference title in his final game as a Shocker. 

“It’s an awesome feeling. I’m so happy and proud of my guys just everything we’ve been through this year, nobody thought we could do it. I think proving everybody wrong is something special.” 

With the adversity that this year’s team has faced, Bush said this title will be something that’ll last a lifetime. 

“It’s something I’ll definitely never forget and a bond with these guys that’ll last forever.” 

Jacob Herrs

Like Bush, Herrs spent the past four years with the program as a walk-on after growing up in Andover. He said it was amazing to wrap up his career with a conference championship. 

“It feels amazing. I’ve never cut down a net, I’ve never won a ring in anything. We’ve had chances but we actually capitalized on it and this is one of the best days I’ve been a part of for sure.” 

Sophomore Tyson Etienne said that the impact that Bush and Herrs left on this year’s team is invaluable. 

“They’re invaluable,” he said. “You can’t take away their value from our team. We aren’t conference champions without them because at the end of the day, they come to practice every day, they come to weights every single day, they come to the arena every single day with a great attitude, with lively spirits. Just to have the ability to call them teammates is something I’ll always cherish.I know that they’re going to be successful in whatever they do just on the way they carried themselves.”