DePaul Faces No. 6 Villanova on Saturday
Jan. 17, 2014
Saturday, Jan. 18 | 4 p.m. ET
CHICAGO - DePaul travels to Villanova for a Saturday afternoon game against the sixth-ranked Wildcats. Start time at The Pavilion is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET. The Blue Demons are looking to put together three straight BIG EAST wins for the first time since the 2006-07 season.
Saturday's game will be televised on FOX Sports Networks (WPWR My50 in Chicago) with Scott Graham (play-by-play) and Gary Williams (analyst) handling the television duties. DePaul's radio tandem of Zach Zaidman (play-by-play) and Jeff Blanzy (analyst) can be heard on WSCR 670 AM, on BlueTube at www.depaulbluedemons.com and on DePaul's mobile app. Live stats can be found on GameTracker at www.depaulbluedemons.com while in-game scoring updates and notes can be followed at www.twitter.com/depaulsid.
DePaul enters the game at 10-8 overall and 2-3 in conference play after two straight wins over Butler and St. John's. DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell is in his fourth season at DePaul and his 26th as a head coach at the collegiate level. Villanova - ranked No. 6 in both the AP and USA Today Coaches top 25 - is 15-1 overall and 4-0 in the BIG EAST. Villanova coach Jay Wright is in his 13th season leading the Wildcats.
Following the Villanova, DePaul makes a quick turnaround for a Monday afternoon game against Xavier. The game is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start at Allstate Arena on FOX Sports Networks and online on BlueTube.
Noting the Blue Demons: The men's basketball program is 1,405-909 (.607) all-time... the 80-71 win at Milwaukee on Nov. 19 was game No. 2,300 in program history since the first fully-recognized season in 1923-24... men's basketball was played at DePaul prior to that season but records are incomplete... the 81-70 win over Florida Atlantic on Dec. 12 was win No. 1,400 since start of 1923-24 season... the Blue Demons have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 629 straight games... DePaul's last game without a three was Feb. 16, 1993 against UAB at Allstate Arena... the Blue Demons are 323-154 (.677) all-time at Allstate Arena... DePaul is 8-1 (.889) all-time in games at McGrath-Phillips Arena... in each of Oliver Purnell's three-plus seasons at DePaul, the Blue Demons are 9-1 against Chicagoland opponents (Chicago State, Illinois-Chicago, Loyola-Chicago, Northern Illinois, Northwestern)... in the Purnell era, the Blue Demons are 21-3 - including 13 straight wins (6-0 in 2012-13/6-0 in 2013-14) - when scoring 80 or more points... DePaul's 2013-14 roster includes nine players from the Chicagoland area.
The Opponent: Villanova is 15-1 overall and 4-0 in BIG EAST action after a 74-67 win at St. John's on Jan. 11... the Wildcats are ranked sixth in both the AP top 25 and the USA Today Coaches poll... JayVaughn Pinkston leads three players in double-figures with 16.1 points per game... Darrun Hilliard adds a 13.9 scoring average and James Bell checks in with 13.8 points and a team-high 6.1 rebounds per game... head coach Jay Wright is in his 13th season leading the Wildcats... DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell is 1-5 all-time against Villanova.
The Series: Saturday is the 25th all-time meeting between the two programs... the Wildcats hold an 16-8 advantage in the series... Villanova has won the last six meetings... a year ago, the Wildcats posted a 94-71 win at Allstate Arena... DePaul last win at Villanova was a 73-65 victory on Jan. 6, 2007.
The Last Meeting: Villanova broke open a 40-40 tie at halftime with a 51-point second half to defeat DePaul, 94-71, on Feb. 5, 2013 at Allstate Arena... the Wildcats shot .688 (22-32) from the field in the second half that included a 6-of-7 (.857) effort from three-point range... Ryan Arcidiacono led six Villanova players in double-figures with a game-high 23 points... Darrun Hilliard added 17 and James Bell scored 16 for the Wildcats... Cleveland Melvin led DePaul with 19 points and Jamee Crockett added 16.
It Could Happen: A three-pointer extends DePaul straight to 630 straight games with a trifecta... a win ends DePaul's losing streak at 46 games against ranked opponents... a win also gives DePaul its first three-game winning streak in the BIG EAST since Feb. 2007... that team defeated Notre Dame (67-66), Marquette (72-67) and USF (75-62)... Cleveland Melvin (705 FG) needs nine field goals to pass David Booth (713 FG, 1988-92) for third all-time... Melvin could move from a tie for 17th to 14th place on the all-time rebounding list on Saturday... Melvin enters the Villanova game tied with David Booth (698 rebs., 1988-92)... ahead of Melvin is Bobby Simmons (700 rebs., 1998-01) in 16th, Joe Ponsetto (704 rebs., 1974-78) in 15th and Mark Aguirre (706 rebs., 1978-81) in 14th place... Brandon Young (569 FG) needs three field goals to pass Stephen Howard (571 FG, 1988-92) and Rod Strickland (571 FG, 1985-88) for ninth all-time... Young (113 3pt. FG) needs three three's to pass Sammy Mejia (115 3pt. FG, 2003-07) for 12th place on the three-point chart.
Demon Doings: Notes following DePaul's 77-75 win against St. John's on Jan. 14:
Trending: In the last nine games, the Blue Demons have totaled 58 blocked shots (6.4 bpg)... four different players have recorded seven double-doubles this season... since the 2002-03 season, four teams have featured at least four players with a double-double... the 2003-04 squad had five (Andre Brown, Drake Diener, Quemont Greer, Delonte Holland, Sammy Mejia) with at least one double-double... DePaul has outrebounded its opponent in 13 games with a 10-3 record in those games... the Blue Demons outrebounded the opponent in 12 games (8-4 record) in the entire 2012-13 season.
Who's Next: DePaul hosts Xavier at 3 p.m. on Monday at Allstate Arena... the Blue Demons led the all-time series, 8-3... first meeting since Dec. 1997.