After a great 2018-19 season, many wondered how the DePaul Blue Demons would fare after losing some of their key players. Leader Eli Cain and Max Strus, DePaul’s best offensive player last season, are both gone. It’s going to be worth monitoring how the returning guys step up for DePaul. Players like Paul Reed and Jaylen Butz are expected to have bigger roles. Freshman Romeo Weems will make an impact this season as well.
To keep up the improvement, DePaul needs to continue to win the winnable games they have in their non-conference schedule. They did it last season and last night they started off on the right foot. Against Alcorn State, the Blue Demons took care of business in a 72-54 win. They raced out to a 19 point lead in halftime and never looked back.
Reed had a double double with 17 points and dominated on the boards with game high 11 rebounds. Weems and Kansas transfer Charlie Moore both dropped double digits point totals. The Blue Demons shot 50 percent from the field while limiting their SWAC opponents to a mere 25 percent. It’s a quick turnaround for DePaul as they play two games in back to back games. However, it will be their home opener in Wintrust Arena so expect the Blue Demons to come out of the gates with some energy.
Their opponents will be the University of Chicago Maroons. This will be the opening game for the Division III side as they begin with two straight road matchups. After this one, they will be traveling to play Milikin. Last season the Maroons finished an above .500 record of 15-10, going 8-6 in conference play. Although this is an exhibition and a game DePaul should win, they shouldn’t take their opponents too lightly. The Maroons beat some ranked D3 teams last season such as Wheaton, Rochester, and Emory.
How to watch, listen, and stream
Game Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
TV: Fox Sports 2
Radio: WIND 560 AM (DePaul)
Stream: Fox Sports Go (where streaming is available)
Last Time They Met
This will be the 10th meeting between the two schools. However, this will be the first matchup since 1944. DePaul currently leads the series 8-1 and will look to make it nine at Wintrust Arena.
What to Watch For
Better performance from Devin Gage
DePaul had three players in double digits but Devin Gage wasn’t one of them. In his 12 minutes he only scored a mere two points and two rebounds. Both Weems and Moore seemed to get more burn from acting head coach Tim Anderson as both played nearly 30 minutes each. These types of games are good for players to get back in the swing of things and hopefully for Gage he can rebound from his showing against Alcorn.
Another game under Tim Anderson
With Dave Leitao still suspended, Anderson will get another chance to roam the sidelines as the head coach for DePaul. This the second of two games where Anderson will be leading the team. He did a good job against Alcorn State and it will be intriguing to watch if the rotations are tweaked a bit considering this is the second game of a back to back. Fatigue could be an issue so let’s see if some of the end of the bench players get some minutes.