Chris Collins, The Black Bear- The Bears were preseason favorites to win the Missouri Valley Conference. They touted a talented group of returning players with impact transfers and intriguing freshman all led by NBA prospect Alize Johnson.
With Wichita State leaving the conference for the American Athletic Conference most believed this would be Missouri States coming out party as the Conference’s best team. Instead Missouri State went 18-15 losing 8 of their last 10 games.
Trying to find someone to blame Missouri State parted ways with Head Coach Paul Lusk after seven seasons. Lusk’s overall coaching record was 106-121. In his seven seasons as Head Coach he never had a winning record in conference play.
The Bears have been relatively quiet on their coaching search. Although there has been much speculation on the candidates , According to “Wyatt’s List” of the Springfield News Leader two of the strong rumored candidates just seem to make too much sense.
The first being Greg Heiar, LSU Assistant, who spent 6 years (2011-2017) as assistant coach to Wichita State as they regularly wrecked the Missouri Valley Conference. Heiar helped the Shockers reach the NCAA tournament all six times during his tenure there including a Final Four appearance. The speculation gained more momentum when Heiar followed a few MSU officials as well as some of the local media
The second prospect being Steve Woodberry who is a Assistant at Wake Forrest. Woodeberry has history with Missouri State as he coached from from 2006-2012. The Bears made it to the NIT twice during his tenure at Missouri State.
It’s very real possibility that Missouri State could go in another direction. Missouri State has been mum on there search for a new Head Coach.
UPDATE REPORT: The Bears are Closing in on hiring Dana Ford, Tennessee State Coach, Source told ESPN
The report has not been confirmed