We continue our recruit and return series with the Wichita State Shockers, whose season ended Sunday with a loss to Kentucky in the round of 32. Here's a look at what the 2017-18 season could hold:
Possible 2017-18 starting five
F: Zach Brown
Who is lost: Unfortunately for the rest of the Missouri Valley, Wichita State isn’t losing much of anything. Former walk-on John Robert Simon is the lone scholarship senior on the roster -- and he averaged fewer than four minutes per game.
Who is added: Because only one player is departing, coach Gregg Marshall doesn’t have a big recruiting class entering the fold. There is junior college point guard Samajae Haynes-Jones, a Wichita native who played at Hutchinson Community College. He should provide some depth in the backcourt for the Shockers. The 7-foot Asbjorn Midtgaard is the other signee. He has been playing in the Danish League and will only improve once he continues to add strength to his frame.
What it means for next season: Marshall has nearly his entire squad back next season, led by first-team all-conference performers Shamet and McDuffie. Shamet is a highly efficient offensive player who had a tremendous redshirt freshman season for the Shockers after playing in just three games in 2015-16. He’s one of the best shooters in the league. McDuffie is a former ESPN 100 prospect and has proven to be too difficult a matchup for the Missouri Valley, using his size, length and athleticism on the wing. Frankamp, a former Kansas transfer, started finding his flow late in the season, hitting double figures in eight of his final nine regular-season games. Morris, a third-team all-conference performer, also came on very strong late in the season, becoming a legitimate double-double threat on the inside. The fifth returning starter is Brown, a very good defensive player who can guard multiple positions. A player to watch off the bench is Darral Willis Jr., who averaged double figures in scoring despite playing just 17 minutes a game in the regular season.
Trending: Up. As long as Marshall is in town, Wichita State is going to stay in the national picture. Next season's team might end up closer to the 2014 team than the 2016 or 2017 teams, with all five starters and every key player returning. The only question is whether Marshall leaves for a different job.