Anonymous donor finances men's basketball locker room renovation

Gift of $250,000 from WSU alumnus will complete the project

The rendering of the new wichita state men's basketball locker room
The rendering of the new men's basketball locker room, which is being financed by an anonymous alumnus for $250,000, highlights the new lockers, decorative elements and trophy case.

A great coaching staff. A winning season. Scholarships. A top-notch basketball court. These are a few of the items that keep good students in Wichita State’s athletic program. There’s something else and it’s not always top of mind. First-class locker rooms.

   Athletes spend a lot of time in locker rooms. They study films there, prepare for practices and strategize for games. Up-to-date locker rooms are important to keep our program at the highest level possible, today and in the future.

A look inside the current men's locker room where renovation has begun.

Inside the men's basketball locker room as renovations have begun.

   “It is our responsibility to our programs and our athletes to be on the cutting edge in every fashion possible,” said WSU Athletic Director Eric Sexton. “Recruiting is a facility arms race. We are fortunate to have the financial support that we have to utilize in keeping up and hopefully setting the bar.”

   A generous Shocker alumnus has stepped forward to meet that responsibility. He is underwriting the renovation of the Shocker men's basketball locker room, which is scheduled for completion by the end of this summer. This investment, according to the donor, was of interest to him because it is something that always will be a part of Wichita State.

   “This gift was committed to prior to the MVC Tournament so to say this was an emotional response to the 2013 Final Four ‘run’ would be inaccurate,” said Sexton. “This is a case of a donor seeing a need, wanting to help and stepping up and taking action.”

“This is a case of a donor seeing a need, wanting to help and stepping up and taking action.”

- Eric Sexton, WSU athletic director

   The locker rooms have not been completely renovated since 2003 during the transformation from Levitt Arena to Charles Koch Arena.

   “The carpet and lockers were beginning to show wear and tear,” said Gregg Marshall, Shocker men’s basketball coach. “They were beginning to show their age.”

   The new area will have decorative elements centered around a new Final Four theme and will include a trophy case, which will house the Final Four trophy the Shockers won this spring. In addition, each new locker will have an iPad dock. The space will be reconfigured and new carpet will be laid.

   “The individual who has generously provided the funding for this project is an extraordinarily successful alumnus who lives in another state, but follows Shocker men’s basketball faithfully,” said Elizabeth King, president and CEO of the WSU Foundation. “He’s a winner, both personally and professionally, and he appreciates the effort Coach Marshall and his coaching staff devote to making ours a winning program.”

   This type of support is important to the future of our men’s basketball program and its impact on our university, city and state.

   “It shows once again that Shocker Nation is firmly behind us and continues to support us physically — by coming to games, and fiscally — by helping us be the best,” said Marshall.

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