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DePaul travels to face Butler

Blue Demons look to avenge January loss

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: FEB 29 DePaul at Butler Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

THE FACTS

Time and Date: Saturday, February 6 @ 12:00 pm ET

Records: Butler (5-10, 4-8 BIG EAST) | DePaul (3-7, 1-7 BIG EAST)

Rankings: Butler (#98 KenPom) | DePaul (#110 KenPom)

TV Channel: FS1

Watch Online: FOX Sports GO


GAME PREVIEW

On Saturday afternoon, the Big East’s bottom two teams square off as Butler hosts DePaul. DePaul will look to avenge its January 19 loss where the Bulldogs prevailed 67-53. Neither team is riding a hot streak, with the two teams combining for five consecutive losses coming into this one. The Blue Demons have been in the Big East cellar all year; the Bulldogs flirted with the middle of the pack before this recent skid plunged them into the depths.

In the previous meeting, Butler had its best game of the season, dominating from start to finish and earning its only double-digit win of the season. The difference was defense – the Bulldogs kept DePaul to just 12 points in the first 18:44 and on the other side, the Blue Demons failed to defend the perimeter, allowing Jair Bolden to sink five threes en route to a season-high 21 points.

The Bulldogs’ defense has not been as sturdy of late; in their most recent game, they allowed Marquette to shoot 61.5% from the field and yielded 29 free throw attempts. This could be partially attributed to the addition of Bo Hodges to the rotation. He is not a bad individual defender, but the way Butler defends as a team, any change to the rotation can cause problems, especially one involving a transfer playing his first minutes for Butler.

Meanwhile, DePaul’s perimeter defense has improved; the Blue Demons have held their last two opponents to a combined 13/48 from three-point territory. If they can stay attached to Bolden on the perimeter, they can make things difficult for a Butler offense that has struggled mightily all season.