Lebo said his top player, 6-foot-8 senior Maurice Kemp, has struggled to adjust to playing mostly small forward after playing much of last season at power forward. Kemp's numbers don't suggest that much of a struggle, though - he is averaging a league-high 18.3 points, 8.4 rebounds, leads the team in steals with 29, has 16 blocks and shoots 52.5 percent from the floor.
The Pirates' other marquee player is point guard Miguel Paul, a fifth-year senior who started his career at Missouri. After leading the league in assists last season, his 5.71 average is second to Marshall's DeAndre Kane (7.62), and he averages 12.5 points.
Paul's role is to dissect the defense and deliver the ball to one of those shooters - or take it to the rim himself.
"They spread the floor and rely on dribble-drive a lot," Herrion said. "Paul really creates for others off high-block ball screens, ball-screen-oriented offense which creates driving lanes and penetration and sets up shots. Big part of their offense."
Since Herrion and Lebo arrived at their respective schools in 2010, the teams have split four games and have split the two contests in Huntington. After the Pirates stole an 82-81 win at the Henderson Center in 2011, Marshall won 78-67 there last year, wresting control midway through the second half and running away.
Marshall (8-9, 1-1) is trying to reverse a 74-63 loss a week ago at Texas-El Paso, but it won't have to worry about its six-game losing streak away from the Henderson Center. ECU is the team that is trying to repair its road record - loading up on home games in November and December, the Pirates have lost four straight on the road.
Granted, those losses are to Charlotte, North Carolina, Massachusetts and Memphis, but Lebo still is not pleased with his team's play on foreign hardwood.
"For you to be where you want to be, you've got to get a couple on the road," Lebo said. "You're down 12 points at least, maybe even more than that when you start the game."
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/dougsmock.