Remember when I wrote that DePaul was prone to highly variable results due to its press scheme? Yeah, this is what I meant. While I didn't expect last night's 73-51 loss to Indiana State, it certainly was within the realm of possibility.
Here are some quick, bullet point thoughts I got from this game, just from looking at the statistics and play-by-play of course - since I was at Loyola last night.
- Cleveland Melvin made a difference - Melvin scored 15 points in 23 minutes to lead the Blue Demons. He was 7-11 from the field. If he improves his free throw shooting he could become a legitimate low-post scorer against smaller teams. It should be noted that Melvin also had six rebounds and a block.
- Indiana State knew Brandon Young was coming - The honeymoon is over for Young. Teams know that he wants to score now and a team with veteran guards, like ISU, is going to try to take that away from the Blue Demons. While five points is alarming, what I think is more troubling is that he took just five shots all game. Young's five turnovers continue the one negative trend of his freshman season, but that'll change in time.
- The three-point shooting is getting ugly - After going 1-10 from beyond the arc the Blue Demons have slipped to 23.3 percent from long-distance on the season. That's 341st out of 345 teams in NCAA Division I. Considering Purnell's offensive strategy includes a lot of three-point looks, that might be a serious problem moving forward. Someone, whether it be Young, Jeremiah Kelly, Moses Morgan or another player, needs to find their stroke. It'd obviously help if it was more than one player too.
- Rebounding, rebounding, rebounding - Last night Indiana State grabbed 34.6 percent of its misses. That's better than DePaul had been up until the game, but it's not good enough. The Blue Demons can't afford to give teams extra looks.