DePaul Blue Demons vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Wednesday, January 20th, 1:00 p.m. Central –Purcell Pavilion, South Bend, Indiana
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DePaul (8-10, 1-5) has had so many injuries of late, DePaul interim coach Tracy Webster has had had to enlist assistant coaches David Booth and Tom Kleinschmidt as practice bodies. Even though their playing careers are over, they still got game and can teach the youngsters of today a few things.
"We've had some really good practices," said Webster. "We throw Coach Booth and Coach Kleinschmidt in practice now. You don't think those guys can do it, but you know what? They are experienced guys. They understand how to play the game. They pick our younger guys apart. You think they're going to shoot the ball, next thing you know they penetrate and kick and they're creating a shot for someone else."
The Blue Demons hope to pick up on Saturday where they left off on Wednesday night in their 51-50 upset win over Marquette at Allstate Arena. DePaul senior guard Will Walker sees some similarities between Marquette and Notre Dame (14-5, 3-3).
"They do have something in common with the inside-out play that they do," said Walker. "I think Notre Dame does have more consistent shooters than Marquette. We need to close out better on the shooters and follow Coach Webster's lead and do whatever he tells us to do, because we know he's going to lead us in the right direction."
Saturday's game marks the 100th meeting between the two Catholic schools.
The Fighting Irish are a high-powered offensive team, but Mike Brey's team aren't exactly known for playing defense. As evidence, you need look no further than last year's 92-82 win over DePaul at Allstate Arena.
ND of course features pre-season Big East player of the year Luke Harangody. The senior big man dominates in the paint.
"They're a really good team, that plays at a fast pace," said Webster. "They shoot a lot of three point shots. They have a big guy in Harangody who creates a problem for a lot of teams. We're going to have to be ready to come out to play and match their intensity and see what happens."
Harangody is averaging 24.7 ppg and 9.8 rebounds per game for the Irish.
"He's a big body who can score in a variety of ways," Webster said. "You think that it's not a good shot for him, but all of a sudden he ends up making a tough hook shot or a spinner and then a reverse underneath the basket. You just never know with him, the ball can go up any time. He does a good job of offensive rebounding and pushing guys underneath the basket."
The lucky DePaul player drawing the assignment of guarding Harangody is sophomore center Krys Faber. Faber is coming off a solid performance against Marquette where he grabbed 10 rebounds, but now he's facing probably the biggest challenge of his career in Harangody.
"We're playing basketball and Krys knows he has to be ready," said Webster. "Whoever is guarding him has to be ready. It's just a toughness that they have."
The best thing that DePaul can do with Harangody is limit the number of touches he gets.
Faber and others are going to have to hit the glass hard. In last year's meeting, Notre Dame outrebounded DePaul by a 40-31 margin.
In Tory Jackson and Ben Hansborough, the Irish have a pair of guards that can score in a hurry.
"They get the ball off their hands really quick," Webster said. "Jackson does a good job of making good decisions. He has really good players around him where he can penetrate and kick. He can get in the paint and finish in transition. He's a solid, solid player."
Mike Stovall, the hero of the Marquette game, believes in the power of positive thinking.
"Today's agenda (at practice) was ‘Focus'," said Stovall. "We really think we're going to go to Notre Dame and get a win."
The Last Time
On December 31, 2008 at Allstate Arena, the host Blue Demons fell in a 92-82 New Year's Eve loss to the Fighting Irish.
Luke Harangody, led the way for the Irish with a double-double of 26 points and 16 rebounds. Notre Dame finished with five players in double-figures. Guard Ryan Ayers scored 14 points, while senior guard Kyle McAlarney contributed with 13, and junior point guard Tory Jackson chipped in with 12 points.
Senior forward Zach Hillesland was a difference-maker for Notre Dame with a career high of 17 points on eight of eleven shooting.
DePaul was led by the play of super sophomores Mac Koshwal and Dar Tucker, but couldn't muster much offensive output from the remainder of the team. Koshwal led DePaul with a career high 26 points and picked up his fifth straight double-double by grabbing 11 rebounds. Tucker contributed with 24 points.
Senior guard Jabari Currie contributed with 15 points and dished out four assists. Senior forward Matija Poscic chipped in with eight points and five rebounds for DePaul.
Notre Dame Roster
No. Name Ht./Wt. Pos. Yr. Hometown/High School
1 Tyrone Nash 6-8/232 Forward JR Queens, NY/Lawrence Woodmere Academy & Northfield Mt. Hermon
3 Tory Jackson 5-11/195 Guard SR Saginaw, MI/Buena Vista
5 Tom Kopko 6-2/183 Guard JR Chicago, IL/St. Laurence
14 Scott Martin 6-8/219 Guard JR Valparaiso, IN/Valparaiso
20 Jonathan Peoples 6-3/207 Guard SR Bellwood, IL/St. Joseph
21 Tim Abromaitis 6-8/235 Forward JR Unionville, CT/Farmington
23 Ben Hansbrough 6-3/206 Guard SR Poplar Bluff, MO/Poplar Bluff
25 Tom Knight 6-9/251 Forward FR Dixfield, ME/Dirigo
32 Joey Brooks 6-5/215 Guard FR Houston, TX/Strake Jesuit College Prep
33 Mike Broghammer 6-9/243 Forward FR Orono, MN/Hopkins
34 Carleton Scott 6-7/217 Forward JR San Antonio, TX/James Madison
41 Tim Andree 6-8/214 Forward SR Colts Neck, NJ/Christian Brothers Academy
44 Luke Harangody 6-8/246 Forward SR Schererville, IN/Andrean
45 Jack Cooley 6-9/244 Forward FR Glenview, IL/Glenbrook South
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