Inside Look: 2011-2012 DePaul Blue Demons
After graduating three seniors (Mike Stovall, Jimmy Drew and Mario Stula) and losing an additional three players to transfer (Michael Bizoukas to Missouri State, Devin Hill to Loyola and Eric Wallace to Seattle U), it’s safe to say the 2011-2012 Blue Demons will have a different look than a year ago. Now this facelift isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The Blue Demons, who were just 7-24 last year with a disappointing 1-17 record in a tough Big East conference, manage to return most of the bright spots from last year’s roster. DePaul returns with leaders in just about every statistical category and an almost intact starting lineup. The two seniors on this year’s squad, center Krys Faber and shooting guard Jeremiah Kelly, were staples in Coach Oliver Purnell’s starting lineup last season, starting 31 and 30 of the team’s 31 games respectively. You can expect these two to lock down their positions with productive play for yet another year. With Mike Stovall and Jimmy Drew gone junior Tony Freeland, who was used as both a starter and threat off the bench last season, looks to split time with sophomore Moses Morgan at small forward. It’s no secret the player to watch for the Blue Demons this year is reigning Big East Rookie of the Year Cleveland Melvin. The 6’8’’ power forward had a team high 14.3 points per game last season and showed the potential for continued improvement. Also named to the 2010-2011 Big East All Rookie Team, sophomore point guard Brandon Young started every game for DePaul last year while leading the team in scoring. Also suiting up for the Blue Demons this year will be juniors Joe Belcaster and Worrel Clahar, sophomores Donnavan Kirk and Edwind McGhee, as well as freshmen Darrell Robertson, Montray Clemons, Jamee Crockett, Macari Brooks and Charles McKinne. Coach Oliver Purnell’s Blue Demons will start off the 2011-2012 season this November with three non-conference games at McGrath arena (located on DePaul’s Lincoln Park campus) before setting up shop at the Allstate Arena for the remainder of the season’s home games, where they will face talented teams such as Syracuse, Pittsburgh, Marquette and more. While DePaul Men’s Basketball is still a far cry from where it was in its glory days, it seems that they have made considerable steps in the right direction. Though it still remains to be seen if DePaul has done enough to become competitive in the Big East, one thing is certain. This is a team you’re going to want to see play this year. Find 2011 – 2012 DePaul Men’s Basketball Tickets here.