Wichita State Basketball Season Tips Off With Intriguing Match-up

wichita state basketball
Photo courtesy of Wichita State University Athletics

The Wichita State Shockers 2019-20 season begins Tuesday, Nov. 5th at 7:00pm CT with an exciting matchup against the visiting University of Nebraska Omaha Mavericks.

The game will be televised live on YurView Kansas (Cox Ch. 2022) and streaming live on yurview.com.

Last season, Wichita State posted a 22-15 overall record and 10-8 mark in the AAC en route to reaching the NIT semifinals.

Omaha is coming off a 21-11 season (13-3 conference) and a second-place finish in the Summit League, coming up a win shy of making the NCAA Tournament.

This season, both teams were picked to finish fourth in their respective conferences.

Since 1992, Wichita State is 24-2 in season openers, with one of the losses coming last year against Louisiana Tech. Wichita State enters the season with 10 of its 13 players as underclassmen.

Sophomore guard Dexter Dennis (8.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg) was selected to the AAC All-Freshman team. Sophomore guard Jamarius Burton tallied a program record for assists (126) by a freshman. Senior center Jaime Echenique led Wichita State in rebounding (6.0) and finished third in the AAC in blocks (51) last season.

This incoming class is being heralded as the best recruiting group in Gregg Marshall’s Wichita State tenure. It includes a pair of players ranked in the Rivals 150 list: freshman guards Tyson Etienne (No. 115) and Grant Sherfield (No. 116). Forward Trey Wade is also touted as one of the country’s 25-best JUCO transfers.

A veteran Omaha squad returns three starters from last season’s squad: senior guard JT Gibson (12.9 ppg), senior point guard KJ Robinson (eighth nationally in assist-to-turnover ratio at 3.06) and junior forward Matt Pile (11.2 ppg), who’s a Wichita native. Gibson and Pile were selected as Summit League preseason second-team members.

Key freshmen for Omaha include guard/forward Darrius Hughes (ranked No. 7 player in Missouri by Prep Hoops), guard La’Mel Robinson (three-time first-team All-Missouri selection) and guard Grant Frickenstein (Class D-1 All-Nebraska Team).

Omaha is 10-4 in season openers since 2005-06 under Derrin Hansen, who captured 2019 Summit League Coach of the Year honors. Omaha’s last season-opening victory was against UC Santa Barbara in 2016.

This is the first meeting between Wichita State and Omaha in the last 25 years. Wichita State leads the all-time series 2-0, with both victories at home.

Watch the University of Nebraska Omaha vs. Wichita State men’s basketball – LIVE! Tuesday, Nov. 5th at 7:00pm CT on YurView KS (Cox Ch. 2022) or live stream on yurview.com