DePaul vs. #15 Louisville Game Preview

The Blue Demons take to the road for their first game at the new KFC Yum! Center in Louisville for a Big East showdown with the 15th ranked Louisville Cardinals on Saturday night.

Key Information

DePaul Blue Demons vs. #15 Louisville Cardinals – Saturday, February 5th, 7 p.m. Central – KFC Yum! Center, Lousiville, Kentucky

Television – WCUU "The U Too" Chicago

For viewers watching with an antenna, the over-the-air digital position will be WCIU-TV 26.5 and 26.6. The U Too will also be available on analog WCUU-CA, Channel 48. Cable subscribers will see The U Too on Comcast 248, RCN 35 and WOW 170.

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Game Preview

As DePaul (6-15, 0-9) moves past the halfway point of the Big East schedule, they are still yearning for their first conference win. It does not get much easier this Saturday night as the Demons will travel to 15th ranked Louisville(17-5, 6-3) and play at the brand-new KFC Yum! Center for the first time.

Louisville is 5-0 against the Demons in Big East play and it seems like they should have little problem getting win number six. Louisville is coming off a loss on Monday at Georgetown 62-59, while DePaul makes the quick turnaround after losing on Thursday to Notre Dame 83-58.

One bit of good news for the Demons is that Preston Knowles will be out for the game for Louisville. Knowles is the Cardinals leading scorer with 14.9 ppg. Knowles, who will miss the game because of a tweaked hamstring, is the team's go-to-player and ranks either first or second on the team in points, minutes, ft %, three point field goals made, assists and steals.

For Louisville, expect their attention to turn to 5-11 sophomore guard Peyton Siva, the current Big East player of the week. While Siva struggled in the loss at Georgetown (five points on 1-3 shooting and eight turnovers), he is a player who is really picking up his game of late.

Prior to the Georgetown game, Siva had a fantastic week averaging 16.5 points, 5 assists and 3.5 rebounds in two tight wins. Siva had the game winning basket in the Cardinals' 55-54 win over West Virginia, as well as hitting the game-tying shots in both regulation and first overtime in Louisville's win over Connecticut, 79-78.

The Cardinals have been hit hard by the injury bug this year, and the injury to Knowles is just one more hurdle they have to clear. Previously, the Cardinals have lost Gorgui Dieng (who suffered a concussion two games ago and is not expcted to play against DePaul), Rakeem Buckles, and Jared Swopshire (who is out for the season).

Chris Smith, a 6-2 junior guard, and 6-10 junior forward Terrence Jennings will also have to pick up the slack. Smith is third on the team in scoring (9.8 ppg), while Jennings is fourth in scoring with 9.2 ppg, and leading the team in rebounding (5.2 rpg) with Buckles out.

Just like what Oliver Purnell is trying to establish with DePaul, Louisville's Rick Pitino has long been a proponent of running a high-octane and pressure defense system. It should be interesting to see two teams who like to play pressure defense and get up and down the court.

For DePaul, as usual, they will have to get production out of their freshmen. In Thursday night's game vs. Notre Dame, DePaul's leading scorer Cleveland Melvin (14 ppg) struggled to get going and only scored four points on 2-9 shooting-although he did corral 10 rebounds.

DePaul's second leading scorer Brandon Young (11.9 ppg) had a good game on Thursday with 16 points, to go along with four assists and two rebounds. Also chipping in with 10 points was another freshman, Moses Morgan. With the confidence Morgan is playing with lately, expect to see him get more time going forward.

It should be interesting to see if DePaul can do any damage with Louisville down its best player. However, with DePaul playing on the road and losing its last 22 Big East contests, this still might not be the time DePaul breaks through with a win.

The Last Time

On February 20, 2010 at Allstate Arena, Louisville defeated the Blue Demons 68-59. Mac Koshwal led the way for the Blue Demons with a double-double of a career-high tying 26 points and 10 rebounds.

It was not a good outing for DePaul senior guard Will Walker, who scored just eight points on two of 14 shooting from the floor and zero for seven from beyond the arc.

Louisville Roster

# NAME HT WT POS CL HOMETOWN (PREVIOUS SCHOOL)

0 George Goode 6-8 230 F JR Raytown, Mo. (Raytown South)

2 Preston Knowles 6-1 195 G SR Winchester, Ky. (George Rogers Clark)

3 Peyton Siva 5-11 175 G SO Seattle, Wash. (Franklin)

4 Rakeem Buckles 6-8 210 F SO Miami, Fla. (Monsignor Pace)

5 Chris Smith 6-2 200 G JR Millstone, N.J. (Manhattan)

10 Gorgui Dieng 6-10 225 C FR Kebemer, Senegal (Covenant/Huntington Prep)

13 Mark Jackson, Jr. 6-3 230 G FR Brooklyn, Calif. (Taft)

14 Kyle Kuric 6-4 185 G JR Evansville, Ind. (Memorial)

15 Tim Henderson 6-2 180 G FR Louisville, Ky. (Christian Academy)

21 Jared Swopshire 6-8 215 F JR St. Louis, Mo. (IMG Academy)

22 Elisha Justice 5-10 170 G FR Dorton, Ky. (Shelby Valley)

23 Terrence Jennings 6-10 230 F JR Sacramento, Calif. (Notre Dame Prep)

24 Russ Smith 6-0 160 G FR Brooklyn, N.Y. (Archbishop Molloy/South Kent)

33 Mike Marra 6-5 200 G SO Smithfield, R.I. (Northfield Mt. Hermon School)

44 Stephan Van Treese 6-9 235 F SO Indianapolis, Ind. (Lawrence North)


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