DePaul Blue Demons vs. Pittsburgh Panthers – Monday, December 28th, 6:00 p.m. Central – Pittsburgh, PA
Radio – WIND – AM 560
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DePaul (7-5) heads into their first Big East conference game of the 2009-10 season at Pitt (10-2) on Monday night.
To say that winning a game at the Peterson Events Center will be a challenge for the Blue Demons would be an understatement. The Panthers have won 29 straight games there.
While Pitt has struggled at times this season, DePaul is coming off a dreadful 64-61 non-conference loss at Florida Gulf Coast.
Much of what happened in that game can be traced back to DePaul coach Jerry Wainwright's game management. The personnel management and lineups were inexplicable and mind-boggling as Wainwright preferred to play walkons over some of the team's scholarship players.
Freshmen walkons Ryan Siggins and Nate Rogers played for 24 and seven minutes respectively, while starters Mike Stovall (12 minutes) and Eric Wallace (eight minutes) sat on the bench. Wainwright identified Stovall and Wallace as players that need to step up, yet why did they receive such paltry minutes?
All of this is happening as the Blue Demons are coming off a season where they went 0-18 in Big East play. If DePaul has any hope of winning a Big East game this season, they will have to abandon Wainwright's bizarre substitutions and put their five best players on the floor.
DePaul couldn't be drawing Pitt at a worse time, they are healthy and at full strength. Two players have recently returned to the Panthers' lineup. 6-6 forward Gilbert Brown returned from academic suspension in Pitt's 74-49 win versus Ohio on Tuesday to score 11 points off the bench.
Senior guard Jermaine Dixon is in his fifth game back following foot surgery and played his best game yet with 14 points, six rebounds and six assists against Ohio.
While the Panthers have lost DeJuan Blair, Sam Young, and Levance Fields from last year's NCAA tournament team, they are still a force to be reckoned with.
Pitt is led by sophomore guard Ashton Gibbs who is averaging 16.4 ppg. Junior guard Brad Wanamaker is contributing with 13.3 ppg, while junior big man Gary McGhee is leading on the glass with 7.3 rebounds per game.
Look for another low scoring game, as Pitt holds opponents to 56.2 ppg. The Panthers held Ohio to an outstanding 27.9% shooting from the field.
The Last Time
On February 21, 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pitt's DeJuan Blair crushed DePaul 80-61 with a 20 point, 18 rebound double-double performance. Sam Young chipped in with 16 points.
Sophomore Dar Tucker led DePaul with 18 points. Will Walker scored 17 points. Freshman Jeremiah Kelly scored 11, while Mac Koshwal added 10.
# NAME HT/WT POS YR HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL
1 Travon Woodall 5-11/190 Guard RS FR Brooklyn, N.Y./St. Anthony (N.J.)
3 Chase Adams 5-10/190 Guard SR Baltimore, Md./Centenary
5 Gilbert Brown 6-6/210 Forward RS JR Harrisburg, Pa./South Kent Prep (Conn.)
11 Dante Taylor 6-9/240 Forward FR Greenburgh, N.Y./National Christian Academy (Md.)
12 Ashton Gibbs 6-2/190 Guard SO Scotch Plains, N.J./Seton Hall Prep
14 Nick Rivers 6-0/180 Guard JR Phoenix, Ariz./Brophy College Prep
21 Lamar Patterson 6-5/220 Guard/Forward FR Lancaster, Pa./St. Benedict's (N.J.)/J.P. McCaskey H.S.
22 Brad Wanamaker 6-4/210 Guard JR Philadelphia, Pa./Roman Catholic H.S.
24 Jermaine Dixon 6-3/200 Guard SR Baltimore, Md./Tallahassee J.C. (Fla.)
25 Dwight Miller 6-8/240 Forward RS FR Nassau, Bahamas/St. Pius X H.S. (Houston, Texas)
35 Nasir Robinson 6-5/220 Forward SO Chester, Pa./Chester H.S.
42 Talib Zanna 6-9/225 Forward FR Kaduna, Nigeria/Bishop McNamara (Md.)
44 Tim Frye 6-4/205 Guard JR Mars, Pa./Mars H.S.
52 Gary McGhee 6-10/250 Center JR Anderson, Ind./Highland Senior H.S.
55 J.J. Richardson 6-7/235 Forward FR Missouri City, Texas/Fort Bend Hightower H.S.
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