It's also the school that fired the one football coach that carried that program to relevancy, Mario Cristobal, replacing him with Ron Turner, who last coached in college when his 2004 Illinois team went 3-8. Could that litany of questionable decisions spur the type of disdain that makes a rivalry?
Well, FIU has made a couple of pretty good men's hoops hires in Richard Pitino, who just departed to Minnesota, and former Norfolk State coach Anthony Evans, so that might take the sting out of the Thomas and Turner decisions. And letting Cristobal go allowed Marshall to hire new offensive line coach Alex Mirabal, so the Herd might even send a thank-you note.
On the other hand, Marshall did beat FIU in only the Panthers' second bowl game in program history. There might be hope yet.
If not FIU, what about FAU? The Owls, too, have a South Florida address, and the polarity in lifestyle - the blue-collar nature of Huntington versus the palm trees and affluence of Boca Raton - could lead to something. The problem is, though, that the Owls just really don't have the on-field resume. The football team hasn't had a winning season since 2008 and the basketball team under Mike Jarvis has had one winning season in the last five. If FAU scores an upset against the Herd in football or basketball, we might have a scenario much like UCF ending 17-game skid at Marshall's expense.
Western Kentucky, which joins C-USA in 2014, wins the proximity award. The two universities sit a shade over four hours away from each other. The Hilltoppers are pretty good in both football and basketball, so you'll probably see some competitive games. Plus, WKU just hired College Football Darth Vader, Bobby Petrino, to lead its program.
Petrino's history - ignominious exits at Louisville and the Atlanta Falcons, followed by his epic meltdown at Arkansas - makes for an easy scoundrel. And despite his character flaws, the man knows how to run an offense. Think of the possibilities of a potential 2014 WKU-Marshall matchup, with the Hilltoppers in Petrino Year Two and the Herd led by seniors Rakeem Cato and Tommy Shuler and juniors Kevin Grooms and Steward Butler. Whichever school hosts that game will be praying it doesn't have to replace the burned-out lights in the scoreboards at halftime.
So there are some contenders for the role of Moriarty to Marshall's Sherlock Holmes. Only time will tell if a team can rise to that lofty perch. I, however, know my greatest adversary all too well.
Oh, treadmill, you devil's instrument. Your day of judgment is coming.
Contact sportswriter Derek Redd at derek.r...@dailymail.com or 304-348-1712. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/marshall. Follow him on Twitter @derekredd.