DePaul Blue Demons (8-16, 1-10) vs. No. 23 Creighton Bluejays (20-4, 7-4) – Saturday, February 11th, 1:00 p.m. Central – Allstate Arena, Rosemont, Illinois
Television – Fox Sports 1
Radio – WYLL AM 1160
The Blue Demons are in the midst of the toughest portion of their Big East schedule. DePaul plays four straight games against ranked teams. After losing at No. 24 Xavier on Wednesday, DePaul hosts No. 23 Creighton on Saturday, followed by No. 2 Villanova on Monday, and on the road at No. 22 Butler on the 19th.
Creighton comes into this game ranked 23rd in the nation, despite having lost point guard Mo Watson for the season. The Bluejays are 2-3 since Watson tore his ACL in January.
The Bluejays have the best team in the Big East in Scoring Offense averaging 84.7 points per game (which is also 16th best in the nation) and in Field Goal percentage at 52.1 percent. That doesn’t bode well for a DePaul team that struggled in both of their losses to Marquette, which is also a high-powered offensive team.
Creighton is also tops in the league in both assists (17.6 per game) and assist to turnover ratio (1.5).
Khyri Thomas led Creighton with 18 points in the first meeting with DePaul. Thomas was also recently named one of the top three defenders in the Big East by Scout.com’s Evan Daniels.
DePaul will also need to be leary of Creighton guard Isaiah Zierden, who went off for 31 points behind eight 3-pointers at Allstate Arena last season.
Redshirt freshman big man Justin Patton is a candidate for Big East freshman of the year. Patton is averaging 13.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game with a remarkable 70.6 field goal shooting percentage.
DePaul coach Dave Leitao referred to Patton as a “one of the marquee freshmen in America."
Former Kansas State Wildcat Marcus Foster leads the Bluejays in scoring at 18 ppg.
Creighton has had a week off to prepare for this game.
The Last Time
On January 28, 2017, the Blue Demons left Omaha with a 83-66 loss to the 16th ranked Bluejays.
DePaul got off to a shaky start and trailed by as much as 21 points in the first half.
Their problems were further compounded by foul trouble with three starters. Eli Cain, Billy Garrett, and Tre’Darius McCallum were all on the bench in the first half with three fouls apiece.
DePaul did manage to rally to come within nine points of Creighton mid-way through the second half, but the Bluejays held on during the game’s final stretch.
While DePaul shot well from beyond the arc (41 percent), they shot just 38 percent overall from the field.
Billy Garrett, Jr. led the way for the Blue Demons with 18 points on six of 10 shooting.
DePaul freshman Brandon Cyrus added 12 points and six rebounds. Eli Cain finished with nine points, but shot just four of 17 in the losing effort.
Chris Harrison-Docks came off the bench to score eight points, but was three of 10 from the floor.
Khyri Thomas led the Bluejays to the win with 18 points on seven of 14 shooting.
No. Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Yr. Hometown / High School Previous School
0 Marcus Foster G 6-3 210 Jr. Wichita Falls, Texas / Hirschi HS Kansas State
1 Davion Mintz G 6-3 175 Fr. Charlotte, N.C. / North Mecklenburg
2 Khyri Thomas G 6-3 205 So. Omaha, Neb. / Benson HS
4 Ronnie Harrell Jr. G 6-7 195 So. Denver, Colo. / East
5 Jordan Scurry G 6-2 205 Fr. Dedham, Mass. / St. Mark's School
10 Maurice Watson Jr. G 5-10 175 Sr. Philadelphia, Pa. / Boys' Latin Boston
11 Tyler Clement G 6-1 185 Jr. Shawnee, Kan. / St. Thomas Aquinas
13 Cole Huff F 6-8 220 Sr. Altadena, Calif. / Campbell Hall Nevada
14 Kaleb Joseph G 6-3 180 Jr. Nashua, N.H. / Cushing Academy Syracuse
15 Martin Krampelj F 6-9 225 Fr. Grosuplje, Slovenia / Impact Academy [Fla.]
21 Isaiah Zierden G 6-3 190 Sr. Minneapolis, Minn. / Benilde-St. Margaret's
23 Justin Patton C 7-0 230 Fr. Omaha, Neb. / North
24 Kobe Paras G 6-6 200 Fr. Manila, Philippines / Los Angeles Cathedral (Calif.)
31 Sam Dunkum F 6-10 215 Fr. North Little Rock, Ark. / North Little Rock Lafayette
32 Toby Hegner F 6-10 235 Jr. Berlin, Wis. / Berlin
40 Zach Hanson C 6-9 245 Sr. Pierre, S.D. / T.F. Riggs