Nov. 30, 2011
CHICAGO - DePaul opens the 32nd season of play in Rosemont against Mississippi in the 2011 BIG EAST-SEC Challenge. The Blue Demons and Rebels square off at 8 p.m. Thursday at Allstate Arena. Both teams enter the game on two-game win streaks with the Blue Demons coming off a 2-1 trip to the Old Spice Classic last week.
Thursday’s 8 p.m. start can be seen on ESPNU with Adam Amin (play-by-play) and Dickey Simpkins (analyst) calling all the action. The game can also be heard on WSCR 670 The Score with Zach Zaidman (play-by-play) and Laurence Holmes (analyst) handling the radio duties. Live stats are available online at www.depaulbluedemons.com and in-game scoring updates and notes can be followed as well at www.twitter.com/depaulsid.
Following the Ole Miss game, DePaul continues its non-conference schedule on Monday, Dec. 5 when Milwaukee visits Allstate Arena. The Blue Demons travel to Loyola-Chicago on Dec. 7 before hosting Chicago State on Dec. 10.
Noting the Blue Demons: The men’s basketball program is 1,376-862 (.615) all-time... the Blue Demons have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 553 straight games... DePaul’s last game without a three was Feb. 16, 1993 against UAB at Allstate Arena... the Blue Demons are 307-132 (.699) all-time in Rosemont... DePaul is 5-1 (.833) all-time in games at McGrath-Phillips Arena... the Blue Demons have won four of their first five games in two of the last three seasons (2008-09 and 2009-10).
The Opponent - Ole Miss Rebels: Mississippi travels to Rosemont with a 5-1 record... the Rebels recorded wins over Louisiana-Monroe (60-38) and Grambling (69-39) before going 2-1 at the Paradise Jam... Ole Miss defeated Drake, 63-59, before falling to Marquette, 96-66... the Rebels have won two straight since that loss with an 80-69 win over TCU in St. Thomas followed by a 64-61 win over Miami (Fla.) at home on Nov. 25... Terrance Henry leads the team with 12.2 points while Dundrecous Nelson adds 11.8 points per game... Murphy Holloway - this week’s SEC Player of the Week - averages a double-double of 10.8 points and 10.2 boards per outing... head coach Andy Kennedy is in his sixth season leading the Ole Miss program.
The Series: Thursday is just the third meeting between the two programs... it is the first contest since a 69-63 win for Ole Miss at the San Juan Shootout on Dec. 20, 2007... in that tournament, the Rebels eventually defeated a Purnell-led Clemson team, 85-82, to claim the tournament title... DePaul won the first meeting in the quarterfinals of the NIT by a 75-67 margin on Mar. 25, 1983 in Rosemont.
Against the SEC: DePaul is 16-33 all-time against the current lineup of the Southeastern Conference... the most common opponent is Kentucky with 21 meetings... Ole Miss is the first SEC opponent since a 76-45 loss to Mississippi State on Dec. 10, 2009... that game was played in Tampa, Fla. as part of the SEC/BIG EAST Invitational... DePaul’s last victory over a SEC opponent was a 71-69 decision over Florida on Jan. 26, 2000 at the United Center... the Blue Demons are currently on a seven-game losing streak against the conference.
Old Spice Classic Notebook: DePaul placed fifth at the Old Spice Classic with a 2-1 record... the Blue Demons lost, 86-85, in the first game against Minnesota before defeating Texas Tech, 76-70, and Arizona State, 68-64, to win the consolation bracket... Cleveland Melvin was named to the All-Tournament Team... the win over Texas Tech snapped a four-game losing streak in regular-season tournament play... DePaul went 0-3 at the 76 Classic last season and fell to Minnesota to open this year’s Old Spice Classic... Cleveland Melvin and Brandon Young each scored at least 20 points in DePaul’s two games... it’s the first time in the sophomores career’s that they have both scored 20-plus in back-to-back games... the duo accounted for 53.7 percent (123-of-229) of the points scored at the HP Field House at ESPN Wide World of Sports.
It Could Happen: A win gives DePaul a 5-1 start for the second time in the last three seasons... over the 10 previous seasons (2001-11), just three DePaul teams have started the season 5-1 (2009-10, 2003-04, 2002-03)... Jeremiah Kelly is playing in his 100th career game... he needs one three-pointer for sole possession of 11th all-time... he enters the Ole Miss game with 115 three’s and is tied with Sammy Meija (2003-07)... Kelly needs two three-pointers to move into a tie for 10th with Quentin Richardson (117 3pt. FG, 1998-00)... with four steals, Kelly moves into a tie for 16th all-time with Thomas Cooper (132 steals, 1995-99)... Krys Faber is playing in his 95th career game.
Demon Doings: Notes following DePaul’s 68-64 win against Arizona State at the Old Spice Classic on Nov. 27:
- DePaul records first win over a Pac-12 opponent since a 90-62 victory over California on Dec. 23, 2006 at Allstate Arena... the win snapped a three-game losing streak against the conference membership... the Blue Demons are 25-28 all-time against the Pac-12.
- DePaul finishes a regular-season tournament at 2-1 for the second time in three years... the Blue Demons placed third at the Paradise Jam in 2009 with a 2-1 record.
- Cleveland Melvin has reached double-figures in 24 of 32 career games (75.0 percent).
- Brandon Young has tallied double-figures in 25 of 36 career games (69.4 percent).
- Moses Morgan matched his career-high (second time) with four three-pointers.
- Jeremiah Kelly played in his 99th career game.
- Arizona State is 9-12 against the current lineup of BIG EAST programs.
- Sunday was the fourth meeting between the two programs... DePaul leads the series, 3-1.
- The game was the first since a 73-72 overtime win for DePaul on Nov. 27, 1982.
Three Decades in Rosemont: DePaul enters its 32nd season in 2011-12 at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Ill. The Blue Demons are 307-132 (.699) all-time in Rosemont. DePaul played its first season at the then-named Rosemont Horizon in 1980. The Blue Demons debuted in Rosemont with a 74-56 win over Gonzaga and John Stockton on Dec. 1, 1980.