Wichita State basketball coach Gregg Marshall has resigned from his position amid allegations of verbal and physical abuse. The university confirmed in a statement that it had accepted his resignation. WSU will pay Marshall, who has been the team's head coach for 13 years, $7.75 million over a six-year period as part of a contract settlement, with the university’s Intercollegiate Athletic Association covering the settlement.
An investigation took place into the allegations of abuse. Examples provided by The Athletic and other outlets included allegations of punching a player, choking an assistant, a bizarre parking-lot rage scene against a student and racial and ethnic slurs aimed at players. According to Sports Illustrated, former Wichita State forward Shaquille Morris said that he was struck twice by Marshall in a 2015 practice. He also said that he saw the head coach choke former assistant coach Kyle Lindsted during a practice in the 2016-17 season.
"Our student-athletes are our primary concern," said Director of Athletics Darron Boatright. "While the university acknowledges the success of the basketball program under Coach Marshall, this decision is in the best interest of the university, its student athletes and the WSU community. WSU will continue its pursuit of excellence with the help of its student-athletes, staff and loyal supporters of the basketball program."
While the allegations at Wichita State led to Marshall's resignation, there were others dating back to 1998. He previously served as head coach at Winthrop. During this tenure, he allegedly mocked a player who took prescription medication for his mental health. There were other claims that Marshall put his hands on players on multiple occasions, both on and off the court.
"My coaching style isn’t for everyone," Marshall said in a statement in October. "Many players thrive in the system we have created and are energized by our team culture. For those players, I am a motivator, a pusher, someone who can tap into their greatest potential. For others, I can be demanding, harsh or strict. I don’t argue with those descriptions.
"What I am not is demeaning or abusive," Marshall continued. "I have deep respect for all my players. I believe unequivocally in their value as athletes, as students, and as people. Any portrayal of me to the contrary is wrong."
Marshall led the Shockers to 331 wins in his 13 years at Wichita State. The team reached the Final Four in 2013 and faced off with Marshall. However, the WSU basketball team has not won a tournament game since 2017.