Nov. 16, 2017
DePaul at Illinois
Gavitt Tipoff Games
Friday, Nov. 17 | 7:30 p.m.
State Farm Center | Champaign, Ill.
CHICAGO - Another early-season game with extra interest is on tap for the DePaul Blue Demons as they travel to Champaign, Ill., for a Friday night game at Illinois. Following a historic opening weekend with the first two games at Wintrust Arena, the Blue Demons meet the Illini on a basketball court for the first time in 60 years. Friday’s game is scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. start at State Farm Center.
Friday’s game will be televised on the Big Ten Network with Jeff Levering (play-by-play) and Stephen Bardo (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 WIND 560 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.
Illinois opened its season with wins over Southern and UT Martin last weekend. The Illini went 20-15 overall last season and 8-10 in Big Ten play. DePaul head coach Dave Leitao is in 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. Illinois is led by Brad Underwood who is in his first season leading the Illini.
DePaul in the Gavitt Tipoff Games: The Blue Demons are playing for the third time in the annual series between teams from the BIG EAST and Big Ten Conferences. A year ago, the Blue Demons dropped a 66-59 decision to Rutgers at Allstate Arena. DePaul’s first appearance in the event took the Blue Demons to Penn State. The Nittany Lions defeated the Blue Demons, 68-62, in that game.
Noting the Blue Demons: The men’s basketball program is 1,438-988 (.593) all-time... the Blue Demons have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 741 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: With five points, Eli Cain reaches 850 career points... Marin Maric is playing in his 99th collegiate game... he played in 96 career games at Northern Illinois and Friday is his third game with the Blue Demons.
Demon Doings: Notes following DePaul’s 81-57 win against Delaware State on Monday:
- The win was the first for DePaul at Wintrust Arena.
- DePaul’s 52 rebounds were the most in a game since the Blue Demons grabbed 53 against Grambling State on Nov. 9, 2013.
- The 13 rebounds by Jaylen Butz are the most in a game by a DePaul player since November 2013... Cleveland Melvin grabbed 13 boards against Wright State on Nov. 16, 2013.
- Marin Maric reached the 1,000-point plateau in his collegiate career... he scored 989 points in 96 career game at Northern Illinois before playing as a graduate student this season at DePaul.
- Devin Gage scored in double-figures for the second time in as many games this season... he did it twice in 31 games a year ago... his eight assists were a new career high.
- Peter Ryckbosch played in his 70th career game.
- Monday’s game was the first meeting between the two programs.
The Opponent - Illinois Fighting Illini: Illinois is 2-0 following season-opening wins over Southern and UT Martin... the Illini opened the season last Friday with a 102-55 decision over Southern... on Sunday, they defeated UT Martin, 77-74... Leron Black leads the team with 18.5 points and 7.0 rebounds per game... five players averaging in double-figures with Aaron Jordan following Black at 13.5 points per game... head coach Brad Underwood is in his first season leading the Illini... DePaul head coach Dave Leitao is facing Illinois for the first time.
The Series: Illinois holds a 12-6 advantage in the series... all 18 meeting occurred between 1934-1957... the Illini handed DePaul’s 1945 NIT Championship team led by George Mikan one of its three losses that season... the teams split a pair of games that season with the road team winning each time... Illinois has won the last five games in the series.
Against the Big Ten: DePaul is 84-78 all-time against the current membership of the Big Ten Conference... Northwestern is DePaul’s most common opponent... the Blue Demons lead that series, 20-12... DePaul faces the Wildcats on Dec. 16 at Wintrust Arena and takes on Michigan State on Thanksgiving night in the first game of the PK80 in Portland.