Wintrust Arena Era Begins Saturday
Nov. 10, 2017
DePaul vs. #14/14 Notre Dame
Saturday, Nov. 11 | 3 p.m.
Wintrust Arena | Chicago, Ill.
TV: FS1 | Online: FOX Sports Go
Radio: WSCR 670 AM | Online: BlueTube
CHICAGO - DePaul opens the 2017-18 season and the Wintrust Arena era on Saturday afternoon against Notre Dame. The DePaul-Notre Dame series dates back to February 1912 and Saturday's game is the 105th meeting between the two programs. The Blue Demons and Irish are scheduled for a 3 p.m. start at Wintrust Arena.
Saturday's game will be televised on FS1 with Brian Anderson (play-by-play) and Bill Raftery (analyst) handling the television duties. The game can also be seen online and on mobile devices with FOX Sports Go. DePaul's radio tandem of Zach Zaidman (play-by-play) and Laurence Holmes (analyst) can be heard on WSCR 670 AM as well as online on BlueTube at www.depaulbluedemons.com. Live stats can be found on GameTracker at www.depaulbluedemons.com while in-game scoring updates and notes can be followed on Twitter at @DePaulSID.
Notre Dame opens the season ranked No. 14 in both national polls. The Irish went 26-10 a year ago and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament. DePaul head coach Dave Leitao begins his sixth season at DePaul and his third since returning to the program after leading the Blue Demons three postseasons in three years from 2002-05. Overall, the 2017-18 campaign is Leitao's 12th as a head coach at the collegiate level. Notre Dame is led by Mike Brey who starts his 18th season leading the Irish.
Season-Opening Notes: DePaul is 82-12 all-time in the first game of the season following last season's win against Robert Morris... today's game is the start of the 95th recognized season of DePaul basketball (since 1923-24)... DePaul competed in basketball prior to the 1923-24 season, but season records and results are incomplete... DePaul has won nine straight season openers after a three-game losing streak in first games from 2005-08... the Robert Morris game was the eighth all-time season opener at McGrath-Phillips Arena for the Blue Demons.
Home-Opener Notes: DePaul is 87-7 all-time in the first home game of the season... the Blue Demons have won 11 straight and 50 of the last 52 home openers... the last loss in the home-opening game of the season was a 75-60 defeat against Bradley on Nov. 19, 2005... last season, the Blue Demons defeated Robert Morris, 78-72, at McGrath-Phillips Arena on Nov. 13.
200 East Cermak: DePaul opens the doors to Wintrust Arena on Saturday following a 37-year run primarily playing home games in suburban Rosemont, Ill.
The Blue Demons have played on a variety of home courts over the duration of the program including 18 games at the United Center from 1994-2002. Notre Dame was DePaul's first opponent on Chicago's westside on Dec. 10, 1994. Of the six first games at DePaul Auditorium, Chicago Stadium, Alumni Hall, Rosemont Horizon/Allstate Arena, United Center and McGrath-Phillips Arena, the Blue Demons hold a 6-0 record.
The 10,387-seat facility near McCormick Place in the South Loop area of the city is a joint project between the City of Chicago, the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, and DePaul University. It features state-of-art amenities for the DePaul men's and women's basketball programs as well as fans in attendance with over 400 club seats and 22 suites.
The arena has already hosted major events including the Obama Foundation Summit in early November along with concerts by Bob Dylan and Chicago and a variety of convention-related shows and concerts.
The Blue Demons open the facility on Saturday, Nov. 11 against Notre Dame and will play all home games at Wintrust Arena. The women's program is scheduled to play six games at Wintrust Arena that includes a Friday, Dec. 8 date against Connecticut. Additionally, the BIG EAST Women's Basketball Tournament will be at the facility from 2018-20 and a 2019 NCAA Women's Basketball Regional will be played at Wintrust Arena.
DePaul is the first BIG EAST program to open a new facility since Louisville at the KFC Yum Center in 2010-11. Among the current membership of the conference, Seton Hall most recently started in a new arena with the Prudential Center in 2007-08.
Noting the Blue Demons: The men's basketball program is 1,437-987 (.593) all-time... the Blue Demons have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 739 straight games... DePaul's last game without a three was Feb. 16, 1993 against UAB at Allstate Arena... the current streak started against Notre Dame on Feb. 21, 1993.
It Could Happen: Marin Maric needs 11 points to reach the 1,000-point plateau in his career... Saturday's game is his first in a DePaul uniform after totaling 989 points in 96 career games at Northern Illinois... a win extends DePaul win streak in home openers to 12 straight victories.
The Opponent - Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Notre Dame is ranked No. 14 in both the AP and ESPN coaches polls... the Fighting Irish went 26-10 overall and 12-6 in ACC play last season... preseason All-American and preseason ACC Player of the Year Bonzie Colson led the team as a junior with 17.8 points and 10.1 rebounds per game... Matt Farrell also averaged in double-figures with 14.1 points per game to go along with 196 assists during the season... head coach Mike Brey is in his 18th season leading the Irish... DePaul head coach Dave Leitao is 1-2 all-time against Notre Dame.
The Series: Saturday is the 105th all-time meeting between the two programs... the series is the second-longest for DePaul following 120 games with Marquette... Notre Dame leads the series, 60-44... the Irish have won the last nine meetings... Saturday's game is the first since the two programs were members of the BIG EAST Conference... the last two meetings have gone to overtime... the two games were in the span of 12 days in February 2013.
The Last Meeting: DePaul fell, 82-78, in overtime at Notre Dame on Feb. 13, 2013... the remaining eight minutes of the second half saw four ties and each team lead by as many as three points... Brandon Young tied the game at 66-66 and neither team could convert over the final 80 seconds of regulation forcing an extra period... Notre Dame outscored DePaul by a 16-12 margin in overtime... a free throw by Jerian Grant gave Notre Dame a lead it wouldn't relinquish over the final 3:47 of the game... DePaul trailed by as many as 14 points late in a first half... DePaul shot .536 in the second half and held Notre Dame to just 23 second-half points... Cleveland Melvin led the Blue Demons with 23 points while Young added 20 points and six assists... Grant scored 21 points for Notre Dame while Jack Cooley recorded a 16-point, 10-rebound double-double.
TV Time: All 30 regular-season games will be televised this season. The Blue Demons are scheduled for 16 appearances on FS1 and one on FS2. Four games will be televised on FOX Sports Networks and three others can be seen on CBS Sports Network. The FSN games can be seen locally in the Chicago market on The U Too. The final game of the regular season against Xavier will be on either FOX or FSN.
DePaul's game in the PK80 over Thanksgiving weekend will be on the ESPN family of networks while the matchup at Illinois is scheduled for the Big Ten Network. The Dec. 9 game at UIC will be televised on NBC Sports Chicago.
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