After coming off a loss in Indianapolis against Butler, DePaul returns home to take on the Providence Friars. Providence is currently 10-10 overall and 6-8 in the Big East. Providence was able to obtain a quality win this past Wednesday over the UConn Huskies, who just beat Xavier earlier today.
These two met on December 27th in Rhode Island, and Providence escaped with a 5 point double overtime victory. DePaul needs to have revenge on their mind from this contest, as some poor coaching decisions were made late in the first overtime. In the contest, Sophomore Oscar Lopez Jr. went out with an apparent knee injury in the second half of this game, and hasn’t played a game since. Oscar appears to be questionable today, although it’s unlikely he suits up.
For DePaul, if they want to pull out a win at home they will need to lock up the Junior Guard David Duke. Duke is averaging 17.9 points per game this season, to go along with 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Not t0 mention, he dropped 24 points against DePaul in that first meeting on the east coast. Another important thing for DePaul to defend the post, in that involves big man Nate Watson, who scored 18 in the earlier contest. Watson averages 17.9 points a contest and is shooting 61.5% from the field on the year. DePaul will also need to get Sophomore Forward Romeo Weems going early, who has struggled immensely this season. Only averaging 8.0 per game, which might sound decent but the expectations were much higher.
For the Friars, they will need to contain DePaul playmakers, Charlie Moore and Javon Freeman-Liberty. The two can share the rock to teammates and make their job easier by giving them easier looks. Also, the two of them can score themselves. These two are DePaul’s leading scorers on the season, both averaging around 14 PPG. Providence will also need to stay strong in the post against a couple decent interior players, Nick Ongenda and Pauly Paulicap.
This will be a very interesting but close game in the Windy City, the game will take place on FS1 at 8PM.