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Blue Demons and Sun Devils Tangle in Tempe

Dec. 11, 2012

Arizona State Gameday Article

Game Notes: DePaul Get Acrobat Reader | Arizona State Get Acrobat Reader
TV: Pac-12 Network | Radio: WSCR 670 AM | Online Audio: BlueTube

TEMPE, Ariz. - DePaul hits the road for the third time in four games with its longest trip of the stretch at Arizona State. The Blue Demons and Sun Devils play Wednesday night in Tempe with a 7 p.m. MT start at Wells Fargo Arena. DePaul enters the game with a four-game winning streak that includes road wins at Auburn and Chicago State.

Wednesday’s game can be heard in Chicago on WSCR 670 The Score with Zach Zaidman (play-by-play) and Jeff Blanzy (analyst) calling all the action. The game will be televised on the Pac-12 Network with Ted Robinson (play-by-play) and Don MacLean (analyst) handling the broadcast duties. Blanzy and Zaidman’s radio call can also be heard on BlueTube (www.depaulbluedemons.com/allaccess) 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 as well at www.twitter.com/depaulsid.

DePaul stands a 6-3 following an 84-50 win against Milwaukee on Sunday. The Blue Demons hold a four-game winning streak heading into Wednesday while Arizona State enters the game on a four-game winning streak and 8-1 record. DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell is in his third season at DePaul and his 25th as a head coach at the collegiate level. Arizona State’s Herb Sendek is in his seventh season in Tempe.

Following the Arizona State game, DePaul returns to Allstate Arena to start a three-game homestand. The Blue Demons open the homestand against Northern Illinois on Sunday at 4 p.m. in Rosemont. The game can be heard on WYLL 1160 AM with Steve Olken and Blanzy calling the action courtside.

Noting the Blue Demons: The men’s basketball program is 1,390-883 (.612) all-time... the Blue Demons have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 588 straight games... DePaul’s last game without a three was Feb. 16, 1993 against UAB at Allstate Arena... the Blue Demons are 314-142 (.689) all-time at Allstate Arena... DePaul is 7-1 (.875) all-time in games at McGrath-Phillips Arena... the Blue Demons currently hold an eight-game winning streak against Chicagoland programs that includes victories over Chicago State, UIC, Loyola and Northern Illinois... in each of Oliver Purnell’s two full seasons at DePaul, the Blue Demons have faced three Chicagoland opponents during the non-conference portion of the schedule with wins in each meeting... in the Purnell era, the Blue Demons are 14-3 when scoring 80 or more points... DePaul has used six different starting lineups this season... Donnavan Kirk, Cleveland Melvin and Brandon Young have started every game this season... DePaul is scheduled to have at least 27 games televised during the 2012-13 season... over the first nine games, DePaul has outscored opponents by 18 points in the first half... in the nine second halves this season, the Blue Demons have outscored the opposition by 66 points... since trailing Chicago State by 14 points at halftime, the Blue Demons have held Chicago State (5-for-26 in second half) and Milwaukee (16-of-62 in the entire game) to a combined .239 (21-for-88) field goal percentage.

It Could Happen: Brandon Young needs six points to become the 48th player in program history with 1,000 career points... the six points would also make Young the 11th player in program history with 1,000 points and 300 assists... Cleveland Melvin needs 18 points to pass six players and move up to 35th on DePaul’s all-time scoring chart... with four blocked shots he moves into a tie for 10th with Wilson Chandler (86 blocks, 2005-07)... Moses Morgan needs one three-pointer (90 career 3pt. field goals) to move into a tie for 17th all-time with Rashon Burno (92, 1998-02)... Donnavan Kirk needs one blocked shot for 50 in his DePaul career... Charles McKinney is playing in his 40th career game.

Demon Doings: Notes following DePaul’s 84-50 win against Milwaukee on Dec. 9:
- DePaul leads the series lead, 11-1... DePaul is 105-36 all-time against the current Horizon League lineup.
- With 45 first half points, DePaul equaled its third-best offensive half of the season... the Blue Demons’ biggest outburst came in the first half of the first game of the season when DePaul deposited 58 points against UC Riverside on Nov. 9.
- DePaul held Milwaukee to a .258 mark from the field (16-of-62), the lowest number of any opponent this season... the Panthers also finished just 1-of-17 (.059) from beyond the arc.
- DePaul posted its largest lead of the season at 41 points with 5:28 remaining in the game when Peter Ryckbosch nailed a layup to put the Blue Demons on top 78-37.
- The Blue Demons finished with a season-high eight blocks... Cleveland Melvin had a season-high three blocks and passed Kevin Holmes (79) for 11th place all-time in his career.
- DePaul improved to 5-0 overall on the season when leading at halftime and is also undefeated when winning the rebounding battle.
- Melvin reached double-figures (11 points) for the 23rd consecutive game... it equaled his lowest scoring output of the season (last vs. Wichita State on Nov. 20).
- Worrel Clahar had a career-high 10 assists and finished just short of his first career double-double with eight rebounds... Clahar totaled 26 rebounds in the season’s first seven games and has recorded 17 in the last two after a nine-rebound performance at Chicago State last Wednesday.

The Opponent - Arizona State Sun Devils: Arizona State stands at 8-1 entering Wednesday’s game... the Sun Devils have sandwiched a pair of four-game winning streaks around an 87-73 loss to Creighton on Nov. 24... the 8-1 start is just fourth time in 38 years with eight victories over the first nine games... the Sun Devils feature four players averaging in double-figures led by Jahii Carson with 18.6 points per game... he is followed by Carrick Felix (15.7 ppg), Evan Gordon (11.8 ppg) and Jordan Bachynski (10.9 ppg)... head coach Herb Sendek is in his seventh season leading the Arizona State program... DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell is 1-0 all-time against the Sun Devils.

The Series: Wednesday is the fifth meeting between the two programs... DePaul holds a 3-1 advantage in the series... a year ago, the Blue Demons posted a 68-64 win at the Old Spice Classic on Nov. 27, 2011... Wednesday is DePaul’s second game at Arizona State with a 74-67 loss on Dec. 6, 1975 as the previous stop in Tempe.

The Last Meeting: Cleveland Melvin scored 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds to lead DePaul to a 68-64 win on Nov. 27, 2011... the game was played at the Old Spice Classic in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.... the win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Blue Demons against Pac-12 opponents... Brandon Young added 13 points and six assists... Keala King led the Sun Devils with 22 points.

Against the Pac-12: DePaul is 25-28 all-time against the current lineup of Pac-12 programs... DePaul’s most common Pac-12 opponent is UCLA with the Bruins holding a 12-6 advantage.

Melvin Eclipses 1,000 Points, Young On Deck: DePaul junior forward Cleveland Melvin became the 47th player in program history with 1,000 career points when he knocked down his first basket against Western Kentucky on Nov. 21. Melvin currently sits in 41st place on the all-time scoring chart with 1,094 points.

On deck for the 1,000-point club is junior guard Brandon Young. Young enters the Arizona State game with 994 points. With six more points, he becomes the 48th player in program history to reach 1,000 career points.

Blue Demons in the NCAA & BIG EAST Stat Rankings: Through games of Dec. 9, DePaul is 23rd in the NCAA rankings with an average of 10.00 steals per contest. The figure is ranked fourth among the 15 BIG EAST programs through games of Dec. 10. The Blue Demons are also ranked in the nation’s top 50 with 5.1 blocked shots per game (40th) and 77.1 points per game (43rd).

Individually, Cleveland Melvin is ranked among national leaders in scoring, field goals percentage, rebounding, steals and double-doubles while Brandon Young is ranked in scoring, field goal percentage, assists and assist-to-turnover ratio. Worrel Clahar is among leaders in steals and assist-to-turnover ratio and Donnavan Kirk is among the top shot blockers.

In the BIG EAST rankings through games of Dec. 10, Cleveland Melvin is the league’s only player ranked in the top six in scoring and rebounding while only Brandon Young and Providence’s Bryce Cotton are among the top 11 in both scoring and assists. Complete individual player rankings in the BIG EAST and NCAA are on each player’s page in the game notes.

Who’s Next: The Blue Demons close the non-conference portion of the regular season with three straight home games... the homestand starts Dec. 16 against Northern Illinois... the Huskies stand at 2-6 through eight games... Sunday is the 31st meeting between the two programs... DePaul holds a 24-6 advantage in the series.