HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -- Marshall men's basketball coach Tom Herrion was asked how many members of last season's Thundering Herd roster could truly be categorized as a shot creator. How many guys could put the ball on the floor and manufacture opportunities, as opposed to needing others to help manufacture them.
It wasn't a long list.
"We felt this time last year, before (Kareem) Canty got ruled ineligible, we really didn't have a lot of guys who could put it on the floor and create," he said. "Maybe one or two guys."
And one of those guys was DeAndre Kane, the mercurial guard who parted ways with the Herd in the offseason and ultimately ended up at Iowa State. The short list got even shorter. But it wasn't short for long.
The turnover of Marshall's roster - seven members of the Herd's active 2012-13 lineup are gone via graduation or transfer - allowed Herrion and his staff to stock up on those players who can put the ball on the floor. That diversity in ball handling could make for a more dangerous offense.
The Herd could use the boost. Its 69.0 points per game last season was just eighth-best in Conference USA and tied for 134th in Division I.
"Just the fact you have shot creators is important," sophomore guard Tamron Manning said. "Of course, college basketball has a shot clock, so you get to situations where it's just you and a defender and you have to make something happen."
For much of last season, when the shot clock wound down, the Herd's best - and sometimes only - bet was Kane. He could get to the hoop, but it sometimes became an adventure, especially when he was fouled and stepped to the line with a 52.1-percent free throw percentage.
Herrion said this season comes with several more options.