Big East: Demon Days

By - October 25, 2006

When it comes to programs around the nation positioned for a potential breakthrough this season, DePaul has been one of the most frequently cited candidates.

Aside from returning all five starters from last year’s team, the Blue Demons are the only group in the conference to return four double-figure scorers. DePaul seemed to play much better toward the end of their first Big East go-round last year -- culminating with a 108-69 thumping of eventual league tourney champ Syracuse on Mar. 2.

Though each year is a snapshot unto itself, Wainwright is counting on his veteran team’s ability to carry over the momentum.

“For us that’s critical. You fight like hell to get to the fourth floor — you don’t want to start this season on the second landing,” Wainwright said. “We can’t go back to December form. We’ve got to have March form to start the season.

The Blue Demons will be tested during a brutal non-conference schedule, and their coach has already assumed full responsibility if the experiment blows up.

“I’ll be open to public hanging on that one,” Wainwright quipped. “We’re at Maui, we play Wake, Cal, Kansas. I think these guys need that. If we’re ever going to be competitive in this league, we have to stand up and be counted. Whether that helps us get into postseason play or not, I don’t know. But all I hope is that it gets us to a level in the Big East where we make significant improvement in the standings.”

Posted by at 04:56 PM on October 25, 2006

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