When one talks about the DePaul Blue Demons, generally it is followed by laughter. DePaul is a team that has not seen the NCAA Tournament since 2004, let alone the .500 mark since 2006-2007. Their stadium is 12 miles down the highway from their campus, so more often than not; the Allstate Arena is nowhere near full for Blue Demon games (Chicago Business has DePaul's average attendance last year at 1,900). There are a couple bright spots for the Blue Demons, however. One is they will be moving to a new stadium much closer to their Chicago campus in 2016. The other is Tommy Hamilton IV.
Tommy Hamilton IV was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. He attended Whitney Young High School, a prep sports powerhouse on the city's west side, where former Blue Demons star Quentin Richardson attended high school. After a knee injury cost him his junior season, Hamilton headed to the famed IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida for his senior season. A three-star recruit on Rivals, Hamilton received offers from Boston College, Illinois Fighting, Michigan State, North Carolina State, and Northwestern, before committing to DePaul on April 23, 2013. Hamilton joined fellow Chicago native Billy Garrett Jr. in staying local to play for the Blue Demons.
Hamilton made an instant impact for the Blue Demons last season. In his first game, against Grambling State, he recorded a double double, scoring 16 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. His best game of the season came in DePaul's 99-94 win against Butler on January 9. Hamilton scored 17 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, both season highs.
By the end of the year, the 6-foot-9 center had averaged 7.7 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game. Definitely something DePaul can look to build upon going forward.