HUNTINGTON – Conference USA men’s soccer coaches predicted an eighth-place finish for Marshall among the nine teams.
Marshall finished last season with a 6-11-1 record and was ninth in C-USA at 1-6-1. Veteran head coach Bob Gray retired following the 2016 season. Chris Grassie, former head coach at the University of Charleston, is the Thundering Herd’s new coach.
The Herd has a 7 p.m. Saturday scrimmage against WVU Tech at Veterans Memorial Soccer Complex and a 4 p.m. Tuesday exhibition match at Radford before opening the season Aug. 19 with a 7 p.m. contest at Coastal Carolina.
Charlotte, the 2016 regular season champion, was chosen by the coaches as the preseason favorite. New Mexico was picked second followed by FIU, Kentucky and South Carolina. Charlotte, New Mexico, FIU and UAB all received first-place votes.
FIU junior forward Santiago Patino was named as the C-USA Preseason Offensive Player of the Year. Charlotte sophomore goalkeeper Elliot Panicco was picked as the C-USA Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
The top seven teams at the conclusion of the regular season earn a spot in the C-USA tournament Nov. 8-12 hosted by Old Dominion in Norfolk, Va.