The crowd rises to their feet as the noise level reaches an almost unbearable, yet enjoyable level.…
Purnell Upbeat about DePaul's Progress
"At the end of the year we want to be standing as a team that is much improved," said Purnell. "(If we do that) we'll be a team in postseason play."
Purnell likes the experience and depth he now has to work with. The Demons are returning 84 percent of their scoring, 79 percent of their rebounding and 77 percent of their minutes played from last season. Purnell has now had more than two years to implement his high-octane and uptempo system and his current squad is on the cusp of turning the corner.
"I like our experience and I like having athletes to go with our depth (which will) help our style," Purnell added.
While Purnell likes what he has coming back, he knows in order to make the next step this year, DePaul has some glaring weaknesses to work on.
"Guarding the ball and rebounding the ball," Purnell stressed when asked what his team has to do better in order to have a successful season. "Those were areas that we struggled in last year and when we got those right we really competed at a high level. When we didn't do those two things consistently we struggled in the Big East."
Making things easier for Purnell is the leadership he will get from juniors Cleveland Melvin, Brandon Young and Moses Morgan this year. Melvin (17.5 ppg), Young (14.5 PPG) and Morgan (9.0 ppg) are the top three returning scorers and all three have been through the ups and downs of a tumultuous learning process under Purnell.
Purnell foresees the talented trio stepping up their games and evolving more into leaders this season.
"They are the core leadership group," Purnell said. "They have been through the wars and they know what it's all about. At the same time they are highly motivated to turn our record around."
While DePaul is looking to turn their fortunes around, Purnell is making no quantitative goals. According to Purnell, the only goal is to get better.
"We got to make sure we get a lot better," Purnell said. "We'd like to be in postseason play. As far as wins and losses, it's hard to gauge. We do know if we get to postseason play we clearly have improved."
WeAreDePaul.com Recommended Stories
Week 13: Player Downgrades
Every week, Fantasy Football Expert Rusty Reeves predicts a heaping handful of players who will decline in the coming weeks. They should be downgraded at least one tier. Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler …Read More
Scout College Football Top 30- Week Thirteen
The top 30 teams in college football after Week Thirteen...Read More
Outdoorsman's Gift Guide: Christmas 2014
Finding just the right present for that special someone can be a challenge, so we’ve compiled a wide variety of hunting, fishing and outdoor gifts that you—or Santa—can deliver this Christmas.Read More
Scout's ACC All-Century Team
There have been so many great basketball players in the Atlantic Coast Conference since 2000, but which have been the very best? We break down the Player of the Century, Best Coach, Best Freshman, and…Read More
The First Thanksgiving: 10 Myths and Facts
The story of the first Thanksgiving is filled with folklore and legend. But what’s the real story? Here are 10 commonly believed myths about the First Thanksgiving debunked.Read More