DePaul Blue Demons vs. IUPU – Ft. Wayne Mastodons Pick & Prediction NOVEMBER 7th 2023

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DePaul features four returners and eight newcomers on its roster, and Tuesday’s season opener in Chicago against visiting Purdue Fort Wayne brings a chance for each to take an increased role.

That arguably starts with Da’Sean Nelson, the Blue Demons’ sixth man during a 10-23 season in 2022-23 who contributed 11.5 points and 5.0 rebounds per game during Big East play.

Five Division I transfers also join the mix, including former Murray State and South Carolina guard Chico Carter Jr. and Elijah Fisher, who is eager to get a new start after beginning his collegiate career at Texas Tech.

“I’d describe my game as just a killer,” Fisher said. “I can get to the basket, lock down (the) other team’s best player and get my team involved. Do whatever it takes to win the game.”

Fisher paced four DePaul players in double figures during Thursday’s 74-63 exhibition win against Division III North Park. He scored 22 points off the bench on 8-for-9 shooting, while Nelson (16 points), Jeremiah Oden (15) and Jaden Henley (11) followed.

“Obviously, we did some good things out there and we did some bad things out there that we got to clean up,” Blue Demons coach Tony Stubblefield said. “I was proud of our guys and some of the things they did tonight. We did a better job in the second half of cutting down on turnovers. … I thought we did a better job of making plays for one another.”

Purdue Fort Wayne graduated program career leading scorer Jarred Godfrey from last season’s 17-15 team. Leading rebounder Ra Kpedi and three other Mastodons with 1,000 career points also graduated.

Anthony Roberts returns, and cited the Mastodons’ quick camaraderie as a reason for optimism.

“We came in, (had) great chemistry off the court immediately and that trickled down to on the court, too,” Roberts told the Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette. “We jelled pretty good.”

The Mastodons have finished above .500 in seven of coach Jon Coffman’s nine seasons.

–Field Level Media

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