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Louisville-DePaul preview

The Cards (and buses of Cardinal fans) will head to Chicago looking for their first true road win in two seasons.

DePaul v Xavier Photo by Porter Binks/Getty Images

Louisville Cardinals (4-4, 0-1) at DePaul Blue Demons (1-7, 0-0)

Game Time: 2 p.m.

Location: Wintrust Arena: Chicago, Ill.

Television: FS1

Announcers: Eric Collins (play-by-play) and Dickey Simpkins (analyst)

Favorite: Pick ‘Em

Series: Louisville leads, 38-22

Last Meeting: DePaul won 62-55 on Dec. 10, 2021 in Louisville

Series History:

Projected Starting Lineups:

Statistics:

Relevant Videos:

DePaul’s Season to Date:

About DePaul:

It’s saying something that DePaul — a program which has finished last or second to last in the Big East in 11 consecutive seasons — could be so bad in early December that there’s already talk of an in-season firing of head coach Tony Stubblefield. And yet, that’s exactly the situation the Blue Demons find themselves in as Louisville comes to town on Saturday afternoon.

DePaul is 1-7 on the year. They have lost four times already this season to mid/low-major opponents, with all but one of those losses coming on their home floor. Each of their last four losses has come by double figures, most recently an 89-64 drubbing at Texas A&M on Wednesday in which the Aggies averaged an unheard of 2.1 points per possession in the first half.

Like Louisville, offense has been DePaul’s strong suit so far this season. The Blue Demons shoot 39.1 percent from beyond the arc as a team, the 28th-best three-point percentage in Division-I. This is a team that can’t can and will score in bunches. It’s also a team that wouldn’t be 1-7 if it showed even the faintest interest in playing defense.

DePaul enters Saturday ranked 314th in three-point defense, 296th in effective field goal percentage defense and 232nd in adjusted defensive efficiency. The Blue Demons’ last three opponents have averaged 92.3 points per game.

Notable:

—Louisville has won 18 of its last 21 games against DePaul and had won 10 straight before losing to the Blue Demons in December of 2021.

—Louisville is 17-12 all-time in games against DePaul played in Chicago.

—Louisville has not lost a road game against DePaul since 2003.

—Kenny Payne worked for 10 years at Kentucky, where DePaul Vice President and Director of Athletics DeWayne Peevy served as the Deputy Athletics Director and basketball sport administrator for seven years.

—There will be three products from the NBA Academy Africa in Saturday’s game. DePaul’s Churchill Abass and Dramane Camara were both teammates with Louisville’s Emmanuel Okorafor

—Louisville fans used to celebrate a holiday called “DePaul Day.” It died on Dec. 10, 2021.

—DePaul has made a three-pointer in 930 straight games.

—After allowing UMBC and Chattanooga to make 25 of 55 combined three-pointers (45.5%) in the first two games, the Cardinals have held their last six opponents to a combined 22-for-103 from 3-point range (21.4%). Louisville ranks 72nd in the country in three-point defense at 29.7% overall.

—DePaul head coach Tony Stubblefield is 1-0 in games against Louisville.

—Louisville has lost 20 consecutive true road games. The Cardinals’ last road victory came on Jan. 2, 2022 at Georgia Tech.

—Saturday will be the only true non-conference road game that Louisville plays in 2023-24.

—Louisville ranks 11th in the country in free-throw attempts per game (27.8) and eighth in made free throws per game (20.5). U of L’s 164 made free-throws are the program’s second-most through eight games since at least 2010, behind only the 2018-19 team.

—Louisville is 221-15 over the last 20 seasons and 18-3 over the last three when scoring 80 points or more. The Cards are 2-1 in such games this season.

—Since 2004, Louisville is 128-0 when leading by more than 10 points at halftime.

—Louisville has won 162 consecutive games when holding an opponent under 50 points.

Ken Pomeroy Prediction: DePaul 75, Louisville 74