Against South Florida on Tuesday DePaul led at halftime. At the end of the game though the Blue Demons had dropped another close one, 63-59. Now they have one more home game against St. John's on Friday in which to make amends and get things righted before the Big East Tournament.
DePaul has already locked up the #16 seed in the conference tournament. The Blue Demons can't escape the cellar. (At least they escaped the 0 in the win column.) Still, it would be nice if they took advantage of their final home game at Allstate Arena and pulled out a victory in Will Walker's final home game.
Pomeroy gives DePaul just a 35% of winning that final game. I'm sure that the odds that the Blue Demons will be winning at halftime are much higher. Still, winning the first 20 minutes doesn't really matter. It's winning through 40.
The reasons for why DePaul has lost close games that it has led against South Florida, Rutgers and Cincinnati are too varied to count. It may be fatigue - I mean Walker has played the 4th most minutes in NCAA Division I. It may be Tracy Webster isn't ready for the Big East - but are Stan Heath, Fred Hill and Mick Cronin really a murderer's row of head coaching opponents? It may be that the other teams just have more talent - this makes a lot of sense.
Against South Florida the Blue Demons held Dominique Jones to 20 points on 4-17 from the field. The Bulls shot 38.5% as a team. DePaul still lost.
Once again the Blue Demons didn't have a third option. Mac Koshwal continued his late-season tear with 24 points and 11 boards. Walker had 16 points (on 6-13 shooting), 4 assists and 4 steals. And then what? 6 points from Mike Stovall. That just isn't going to get it done.
St. John's has been struggling lately - more on them later in the week - so maybe DePaul can steal one, but the Blue Demons are going to have to play for 40 minutes and someone is going to have to step up.