DePaul vs. Chicago State Game Preview

The Blue Demons travel to the South Side to take on the Chicago State Cougars on Thursday night. We preview the game in this report.

Key Information

DePaul Blue Demons (4-1) vs. Chicago State Cougars (2-6) – Thursday, December 3rd, 7:00 p.m. Central – Jones Convocation Center, Chicago, Illinois

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Radio – WSCR AM 670

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Game Preview

After playing a local rival, Northern Illinois, on Tuesday and winning 78-67, the DePaul Blue Demons (4-1) will look to continue their winning ways against area teams with a Thursday night matchup at Chicago State.

The Cougars are now 2-6 on the year, after recently being dismantled by Notre Dame 90-42 on Saturday. Their only two wins on the year have come against non-Division 1 teams in Trinity (IL) and IU Northwest. Once again, the Cougars have challenged themselves in the non-conference schedule this season, having also faced Arizona State and Creighton and lost.

As you probably know Chicago State is coached by Tracy Dildy, a former DePaul assistant coach. He is doing an admirable job, but he clearly doesn't have the horses to compete against the big boys.

But as they say, you can throw out records when local rivals play. DePaul already had trouble opening night against a local team in Illinois-Chicago, winning behind Billy Garrett Jr.'s game-winning three pointer with 6.5 seconds left.

The Demons have had their issues with Chicago State, too, winning by seven points in overtime last season. And if you remember, the year prior DePaul was down by 14 after Chicago State shot 53 percent in the first half. DePaul would come out guns ablazing in the second half and stormed back for the 74-64 win. So, suffice to say, they can't take this game—or any game—lightly.

Chicago State have lost their six games by an average margin of 23.3 points. They only score 62.4 points per game (270th in the country) on a sub-par .391 shooting (297th in the country) from the field. If DePaul can cause turnovers like they have in recent wins over Stanford and Northern Illinois, DePaul should have no trouble here.

And pressing is probably the game plan yet again. DePaul has looked good at the front end of the press lately, creating havoc and causing a multitude of turnovers. With Chicago State turning the ball over on average of 16.4 (316th in the country) times per game, this falls right into the Blue Demons hands, literally. The Demons have caused 42 turnovers in their last two wins over NIU and Stanford.

Still, playing on the road and on one day's rest is no easy thing, so maybe Oliver Purnell will use his bench more liberally in this game, while giving his main guys more rest than usual. This is a game where Purnell would love to rest guys like Garrett Jr, Myke Henry, Tommy Hamilton and Jamee Crockett in the second half, as DePaul also has to play on Sunday against Milwaukee.

The Cougars are led by 6'4” senior guard Clarke Rosenberg, who paces the team in scoring (15.5 ppg), while coming in second on the team in rebounding (4.3 rpg). He is the only Cougar who scores in double figures. Chicago State also gets 9.0 ppg from 6'2” freshman guard Anthony Glover.

DePaul Coach Oliver Purnell on the CSU Cougars

“We’ve got an opportunity to go on the road for the first time. I think we’ll have to play better than we played (against Northern Illinois) to beat Chicago State. I think they’ve got some talent. We’ve had a tough time every time we’ve gone over there. It’s an inter-city rivalry game. The last one we played was UIC, we kind of escaped. I think Chicago State will be much the same. The difference of course is that it’s on their home court.”

The Last Time

On December 15, 2013, the Blue Demons prevailed in overtime thanks to the play of Billy Garrett Jr. and Charles McKinney in a 77-70 win over the Chicago State Cougars at Allstate Arena.

DePaul led by as many as 12 points in the second half, but sputtered down the stretch with Garrett on the bench with four fouls. The Demons struggled due to turnovers and missed free throws.

It was a sloppy game on both sides, where DePaul turned the ball over 23 times and Chicago State had 19 turnovers.

The Blue Demons shot 57.1% from the floor in the first half, but then shot only 26.9% in the second half.

When overtime arrived with the score tied at 62, it was McKinney 's energy off the bench that gave DePaul a key steal and layup to start the overtime period.

McKinney contributed eight points off the bench, dished out four assists, and had four steals to go along with three blocked shots.

Garrett added 17 points, five rebounds, and four steals.

Cleveland Melvin led all scorers with a double-double performance of 18 points and 11 rebounds.

Brandon Young added 14 points and five assists in the winning effort.

Chicago State brought energy on the road and had three players finish in double figures. Quinton Pippen and Nate Duhon led CSU with 18 points apiece. Clarke Rosenberg chipped in with 17 points for the Cougars.

Chicago State Roster


0 Sean Hill G 6-2 180 Sr. Chicago, IL / Harlan Community Academy High School Davenport University

1 Joshua Meier F 6-8 215 Fr. Justice, IL / Harold L. Richards High School

2 Anthony Glover G 6-2 175 Fr. Toledo, OH / St. John's Jesuit

3 Johnny Griffin G/F 6-5 190 So. Ford Heights, Ill. / Bloom Trail

5 Trayvon Palmer G/F 6-4 185 So. Milwaukee, WI / Brown Deer North Dakota State College of Science

10 Kurt Karis G 6-1 190 So. Northbrook, Ill. / Glenbrook North

11 Jared Dimakos G/F 6-5 205 R-Jr. Lincolnshire, Ill. / Lake Forest Academy Triton College

14 Rahjan Muhammad G 6-0 190 Sr. Bolingbrook, Ill. / Neuqua Valley Lincoln College

15 Elijah Robertson G/F 6-5 185 Fr. Bolingbrook, IL / Nequa Valley

21 Joshua Batson G 6-0 175 Jr. Chicago, Ill. / Curie

23 Aaron Williams F 6-6 205 Gr. Chicago, Ill. / Chicago Vocational Dodge City CC

25 Sharieff Medlock G 6-3 185 Fr. Chicago, IL / Ware County

32 Montana Byrd G 6-4 215 Fr. Chicago, IL / Mount Carmel

33 Jawad Adekoya G/F 6-6 190 Jr. Tinley Park, IL / Victor J. Andrew High School Kankakee Community College

35 Clarke Rosenberg G 6-4 195 Sr. Skokie, Ill. / Evanston Township

42 Michael Johnson F 6-8 230 Sr. Chicago, IL / St. Patrick High School Morton College

44 Quron Davis C 6-10 235 So. Chicago, Ill. / Simeon

45 Jesse Tesmer F 6-8 225 Jr. Greencastle, IN / Greencastle High School Lincoln Trail College

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