Ex-NBA forward Donyell Marshall to join coaching staff at Rider University

donyell-marshallRider University men’s basketball head coach Kevin Baggett missed out a year ago when he tried to recruit Marquis Marshall of Berks Catholic (Pa.) to the Broncs. A year later, he got his father.

Former University of Connecticut All-American and 16-year NBA veteran Donyell Marshall, the father of Marquise, is joining the Rider coaching staff for the 2013-14 season, NJ Times reported.

“I got to know Kevin and Mike (assistant coach Witcoskie) when they were recruiting my son,” Marshall said of Marquis, who signed with Towson and redshirted his freshman year. “Mike and I stayed in touch, and when he told me there was an opening on the staff, I asked him to talk to Kevin for me.”

Baggett, who will begin his second year in charge of the Broncs, actually had two openings from his original staff.

Louis Rowe left the Broncs for a spot on the staff at Florida International, and Michael Cotton followed for a job at North Carolina Central.

Baggett promoted the very promising John Griffin, who was director of operations last year, to one of the spots and hired former Bronc player Paul Johnson for Griffin’s old job. The hiring of the 40-year-old Marshall completes the staff.

“When I was playing, I thought I would either go into coaching or TV when I was finished,” Marshall, who did the Sixers games on Comcast for a year, said. “I did the TV thing, and I liked it, but when I wasn’t doing games, I was kind of bored.”

Marshall, who was the Big East Player of the Year at Connecticut in 1994 when he averaged 25.1 points and the fourth overall pick of the draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves, got involved in coaching within the AAU ranks.

“I had my own AAU team when I was playing,” he said. “Then after (he retired in 2009), I coached the team and really liked it. That’s when I decided I wanted to get into coaching.”

Marshall, who had career averages of 11.2 points and 6.2 rebounds per game in the NBA, was an assistant coach in the NBA-D League last year, so he has some experience on the bench. He also knows a little bit about Rider and the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.

“I know Jason Thompson,” Marshall said when asked what he knew about Rider. “I’ve been to Rider a few times. I did their St. Joe’s game for Comcast. My cousin, Alex Franklin, played at Siena, and I’m good friends with the Fairfield coach (and former Princeton coach) Sydney Johnson. So I know the MAAC.”

A native of Reading, Pa. Marshall has another tie to this area in Hall of Fame coach Pete Carril, the Princeton legend.

“Both of us being from Reading, Pete used to ask me to come to his camps,” Marshall said. “We’ve stayed friends ever since.”

The 6-foot-9 Marshall, who played for eight teams in his NBA career, should be a boost for returning Rider big men, Daniel Stewart and Junior Fortunat.

“I think I can help the big men, and I think I’ll be able to help the guys on the wing, too,” Marshall said. “I’m looking forward to this.”

Marshall, who lives in Cleveland, will be arriving in Lawrence some time next week to get to work.


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