#11 DePaul (12-17) vs. #6 South Florida (17-12)
Wednesday, March 7, 2001
Freedom Hall (18,186)
Louisville, Ky - Noon (CST)
DePaul is 12-17 overall after losing to Cincinnati 75-62 on Saturday. The Blue Demons are the 11th seed in the tournament. South Florida is 17-12 overall after losing to Southern Miss on Saturday in Hattiesburg.
Neither DePaul nor South Florida is mentioned in this week's Associated Press or ESPN/USA Today Top 25 polls.
DePaul has won nine of the 10 meetings between the two schools but the Bulls won the last meeting, a 72-58 triumph on January 25 in Tampa. DePaul has never faced South Florida in the Conference USA Tournament.
DePauls Pat Kennedy is in his 21st season as a head coach and his fourth with the Blue Demons. He has a 384-256 career record, including a 58-65 slate with the Blue Demons. Pat is 10-3 against the Bulls. Seth Greenberg is in his fifth season at South Florida and his 11th as a head coach. His career record is 178-142, including a 73-72 slate with the Bulls. He is 1-4 against the Blue Demons.
Today's game will be televised by ESPN Regional.
Today's game is being broadcast on WAUR (930 AM) in Chicago. Dan Bernstein (play-by-play) and Gene Sullivan (color commentary) will be mikeside.
Conference USA Opener
The Blue Demons open the 2001 Conference USA Tournament by facing South Florida at Freedom Hall in Louisville.
In Conference Tournament Play
This is the 10th conference tournament appearance for the Blue Demons. Overall, they own a 5-9 record. Last season, DePaul reached the championship game of the C-USA Tournament for the first time in the history of the program.
Reviewing The Last Game
Cincinnati clinched the top seed in the Conference USA Tournament by beating the Blue Demons on Saturday in the regular season finale. Below is a brief summary of the game.
Cincinnati 75 DePaul 62
March 3, 2001 - United Center - Chicago, Ill.
Bobby Simmons was the only Blue Demon in double figures with 26 points. He also grabbed eight rebounds. Steve Hunter led DePaul with nine boards while Joe Tulley dished out five assists.
Start Me Up
When Jon Oden earned his first start of the season last week at Charlotte, he became the eighth different DePaul player to have started at least one game this season - four players (Andre Brown, Imari Sawyer, Joe Tulley and Oden) all made the first starts of their career this season.
After not starting at Marquette and missing the UAB game due to an ankle injury, Bobby Simmons returned to the starting lineup last week in Charlotte. Since returning, Simmons has led the Blue Demons in scoring with 15 points at Charlotte and 26 vs. Cincinnati.
Bobby Simmons hit the 100th 3pt. field goal of his career at Louisville on Jan. 29, making him one of three players in DePaul history to have 1,000 points, 600 rebounds and 100 treys. Tom Kleinschmidt and Quentin Richardson are the other players to accomplish that feat. Simmons needs four rebounds to become the only player in Blue Demon annals to have 1,000 points, 700 rebounds and 100 3pt. field goals.
Simmons Moves Into Top 20
Bobby Simmons scored 26 points against Cincinnati on Saturday and he moved into DePaul's all-time top 20 in scoring. The 6-7 junior is now 19th with 1,243 points.
Burno Joins 300/150 Club
Rashon Burno became just the third player in school history to have 300 assists and 150 steals. Burno (307 assists/158 steals) joins two of DePaul's all-time greats. Kenny Patterson had 669 assists and 280 steals from 1981-85 and Rod Strickland posted 557 assists and 204 steals from 1985-88. All three players hail from the New York metropolitan area. Patterson came to DePaul from Queens, Strickland from the Bronx and Burno from Jersey City.
Tulley Comes On
Joe Tulley has made big strides as of late. In his last 13 games, the sophomore from Rockford is averaging 12.7 points per game and has hit 34, 3pt. field goals. He had a career-high 23 points in the win at Saint Louis on Jan. 31, added 22 in the win over Houston on Feb. 7. He added his first career double-double against UAB, scoring 15 points and grabbing a career-high 13 rebounds.
Tulley Has Big Day
You can bet Joe Tulley will always have fond memories of Jan. 20, 2001. Along with hitting the game-winning 3pt. field goal with 1.7 seconds left to beat Temple, he also scored a then career-high 18 points and hit six, 3pt. field goals.
Joe T For Three
Joe Tulley's six, 3pt. field goals in each of the wins over Temple and Houston tied for second-highest single-game total in DePaul history and were one short of the school record.
Simmons Ties Record
By going 12-for-12 from the line against Syracuse, Bobby Simmons tied a Great Alaska Shootout single-game free throw percentage record (shared with Phil Cox of Vanderbilt vs. Clemson in 1982). Bobby has had three games this season where he has been perfect from the line with nine or more attempts (9-9 vs. Northern Illinois and 10-10 at Southern Miss).
Hunter 1-2 In C-USA
DePaul's Steve Hunter leads Conference USA in field goal percentage and is second in blocked shots. For the season, Hunter is 134-222 (.604) from the field and has 70 blocked shots (2.4 bpg).
Hunter Now Third
Steve Hunter is now third on DePaul's all-time list with 126 rejections. Hunter is currently second in Conference USA in blocked shots.
Steve Hunter's 70 blocked shots this season is the third-best single-season total in DePaul history.
Single-Season Blocked Shots
1. 108 Dallas Comegys, 1986-87
2. 79 Dallas Comegys, 1983-84
3. 70 Steve Hunter, 2000-01
Get It Out Of Here
Steve Hunter's eight blocked shots against Houston on Feb. 7 was tied for the second-best single-game performance in school history - tying him with Walter Downing who also had eight against Nebraska on Mar. 26, 1983. Dallas Comegys holds the school record with 10 against Dayton on February 7, 1987.
Steve Hunter has set a DePaul record for blocked shots by a Blue Demon sophomore. Hunter currently has 70 rejections and the previous mark of 56 was set by Walter Downing in 1982-83.
Imari Dishes It Out
Freshman Imari Sawyer has posted some impressive numbers in his first collegiate season. The 6-2 freshman has dished out 172 assists in 29 games (5.9 apg). Imari currently leads Conference USA in assists.
Sawyer All Around
In his last seven games, Imari Sawyer is averaging 12.1 points and 5.4 assists.
An Even Dozen
Imari Sawyer handed out 12 assists in the win at Saint Louis on Jan. 31 which is tied for the ninth-best single-game performance in DePaul annals.
Sawyer In Record Books
Imari Sawyer's 172 assists is the best mark by a Blue Demon freshman in school history.
1. 172 Imari Sawyer, 2000-01
2. 159 Rod Strickland, 1985-86
3. 123 Howard Nathan, 1991-92
Sawyer Earns Award
Imari Sawyer was named the Conference USA Player of the Week on Nov. 27. The 6-2 freshman dished out 30 assists in three Great Alaska Shootout games and scored 18 points against Florida State and 19 against Alaska Anchorage.
Sawyer Sets Record
Imari Sawyer handed out 30 assists in the three games in Alaska, setting a Great Alaska Shootout tournament record. The previous mark of 29 was set by Stanford's Brevin Knight in 1996.
Burno On Steals List
Rashon Burno is currently fifth on the DePaul all-time steals chart with 158.
Burno Hand Outs
Rashon Burno is now 11th on DePaul's all-time assist list with 306.
Head Coach Pat Kennedy
Pat Kennedy is in his fourth season at the helm of the Blue Demons and his 21st as a Division I head coach. He is 384-256 in his career, including a 58-65 ledger at DePaul. Last March Kennedy became the third coach in school history to lead the Blue Demons to the NCAA Tournament and in February of 2000, he signed a seven-year contract extension.
Kennedy Nears 400
With the victory over Tulane on Feb. 17, DePaul head coach Pat Kennedy is now 16 victories away from reaching the 400-victory mark.
PK By The Numbers
Pat Kennedy's DePaul teams are 5-7 in March, 10-14 on Wednesday and 6-8 in neutral floor games.
The Blue Demons' 40-point win at Tulane was the largest margin of victory in a conference game in DePaul history. The victory total was also the third-widest in Conference USA history. The previous high was 35 points in a 103-68 win over Dayton on March 4, 1995 at the Rosemont Horizon. That game was the Blue Demons final regular season Great Midwest Conference contest.
DePaul will face another tough schedule in 2000-01. Below is a listing of how the Blue Demon opponents rank in this week's polls.
Opponent AP ESPN/USA Today
Florida 6 6
Kansas 10 11
UCLA 12 18
Syracuse 19 13
St. Joseph's 18 22
AP Votes: Cincinnati, Missouri
ESPN/USA Today Votes: Cincinnati
There is a new face on the Blue Demon bench this season in Donnie Kirksey. The Chicago native joined the DePaul staff after Larry Harrison left to become the head coach at Hartford. Kirksey had been an assistant coach at Chicago State.
Tracy Dildy was elevated to Associate Coach this past summer while Brian Kennedy moved into a recruiting coach position.
During the November signing period, DePaul signed five prepsters and one junior college player to National Letters of Intent. Below is a listing of the players who have signed with the Blue Demons.
Kenny Adeleke F 6-8 225 New York, N.Y.
Eddy Curry C 6-11 290 South Holland, Ill.
Drake Diener G 6-5 180 Fond du Lac, Wis.
Quemont Greer F 6-7 215 Homestead, Fla.
Sam Hoskin* F/C 6-9 260 Detroit, Mich.
LeVar Seals G 6-4 180 Chicago, Ill.
* junior college player
Loud & Clear
This season marks the fourth year of DePaul basketball on WSCR and its family of stations but this season will be a bit different. Blue Demon fans can now catch most of the action on 670 AM. The new 50,000-watt frequency allows DePaul games to be heard in 38 states and Canada. Due to scheduling conflicts, some of DePaul's games may be broadcast on one of WSCR's sister stations.
Pat Kennedy TV Show
Once again this season, DePaul fans can follow the Blue Demons via the Orthosport Pat Kennedy Show. There will be one more taping of the show. Below are the taping dates (fans are encouraged to come to the show which begins at Noon). All of the shows will be televised by Fox Sports Chicago.
March 12 -- Cubby Bear Wrigleyville
Every Monday at 10 a.m. (CST) all 12 of the Conference USA men's basketball coaches will be available via teleconference. DePaul head coach Pat Kennedy is scheduled to be on the call at 10:47 a.m. (CST). To participate, please call (913) 981-5508. The entire teleconference will be available on replay for the rest of the week beginning at 4 p.m. (CST) by calling (402) 633-6900.
You can follow the Blue Demons all season long on the world wide web. The official homepage of the DePaul Athletic Department which is managed by TotalSports, is located at:
Game notes, press releases, player profiles, game summaries and boxscores are all located on this site.