Marshall tabs Pitt’s Herrion as coach

Pittsburgh associate head coach Tom Herrion has been hired at Marshall.

Herrion was introduced at a news conference on Saturday.

"It was clear as day that I needed to be here, that we needed to take this opportunity and to elevate our basketball program,” Herrion said. "We are here to elevate. I told Dr. Kopp it’s not to rebuild, but to continue to restore and build on and elevate the program to greater heights.”

Herrion, 42, has spent the past three years working for Jamie Dixon at Pittsburgh after being let go after a four-year stint at the College of Charleston in which he averaged 20 wins per season.

A 1989 graduate of Merrimack, Herrion wasn’t Marshall’s first choice. Appalachian State’s Buzz Peterson said he was offered the Marshall job but the two sides couldn’t agree on a contract.

But Herrion’s dogged pursuit of the Marshall job left a lasting impression on athletic director Mike Hamrick.

"He showed a passion that he wanted to be here,” Hamrick said. "He pursued this job from day one."

Herrion takes over a program that won 24 games last season under Donnie Jones, who left to go to fellow Conference USA school Central Florida.

Marshall played in the 16-team CollegeInsider.com Tournament, its first postseason tournament appearance since 1988.

"Our fans are starved for success in basketball,” Hamrick said. "We’re trying to get the Herd nation behind our basketball program. We believe that will happen.”

Herrion was 80-38 in his career at Charleston and was also an assistant at Virginia from 1998-2002 and Providence from 1994-98.

"I can’t tell you how thrilled we are to be here,” Herrion said. "I can’t tell you how excited I am to hit the ground running. I can assure you unequivocally how good a job this is in our circle in the landscape of college basketball.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.