Thundering Herd’s Rally in the Alley set for today

PARKERSBURG – Marshall University green will be on display today at this year’s Rally in the Alley. The event is regarded as one of the most heavily-attended stops for Marshall University’s Big Green Coaches Tour.

And with good reason. The North End Tavern and its owner Joe Roedersheimer will once again provide a tailgate-style meet-and-greet session. Today’s festivities will take place in the back lot and will begin at 6 p.m. Tickets are $30 per person.

Herd fans will enjoy an added feature as recently-hired Thundering Herd men’s basketball coach Dan D’Antoni will be one of the featured guests at the event.

Fans will have the opportunity to meet with football coach Doc Holliday and softball coach Shonda Stanton in addition to Director of Athletics Mike Hamrick.

“When D’Antoni was hired, it was an exciting time in Huntington,” Associate Athletic Director and Big Green Executive Director John Sutherland said. “That was was one of the most exciting press conference I have ever been to, and I’ve been to several schools and a lot of places. It was truly a homecoming and an emotional press conference.

“He talks how he wants to bring back the fast break and winning games back to Marshall University. It’s a very positive atmosphere.”

This year’s tour made its debut the first two days of May in the North Carolina cities of Charlotte and Wilmington.

“We ran into people who had a background with D’Antoni because he’s been down in the Myrtle Beach, S.C., area,” Sutherland said. “He has a lot of friends and even a former roommate from the Wilmington area. His son lives in Charlotte, so it was a great reception.”

Men’s basketball is not the only sport in town where Marshall University is concerned. The football team is coming off a 10-win season and returns Rakeem Cato at quarterback.

“We had our best bowl game playing against our highest-ranked opponent,” Sutherland said. “We have so many starters back, so there is a lot of enthusiasm for the upcoming season. We hope that translates into season ticket sales.”