After dominating UIC on Sunday, 10-1 DePaul Blue Demons travel to Ohio to meet The Cleveland State Vikings on Wednesday, December 18th. The struggling Vikings come in as the 313th rated team according to kenpom.com. On paper, this is the worst team that DePaul will play the rest of the way by a huge margin.
The Vikings do have 3 Division 1 victories on the year, against Jerry Wainwright’s old UNC-Wilmington team, along with Eastern Kentucky and Robert Morris. So technically, the Demons cannot take them for granted.
The game will be on Wednesday in Cleveland at 6PM Central. You will have to get creative to watch the game. According to our friends at Comcast, it will be on ESPN3, also known as the internet. The game will be broadcast on 560AM.
Formerly known as Fenn College
There are very, very few fun facts about Cleveland State. I am serious. Usually, you can quickly find a fun fact. Nope. Thanks for nothing Cleveland State.
So, I am going to go down the fun rat hole of the 1986 Cleveland State Vikings story with their star Mouse McFadden, and their wired coach, Kevin Mackey.
Mackey discovered Manute Bol, who became a 7 foot 7 giant in the NBA. He basically stated that it would have been impossible to get Bol eligible, so he just let the world know that Bol existed. Bol had a long NBA career.
Getting back to the Mouse, Mackey discoverd McFadden while the Mouse worked at a movie theater, from the SI Vault and Curry Kirkpatrick:
Then there is another Cleveland State recruiting lodestone: the RKO Art Greenwich, a movie house on 12th Street in Greenwich Village. That’s where New Yorker Ken (the Mouse) McFadden, a 20-year-old, 6’1″ freshman who scored 23 points against St. Joe’s on Sunday, spent the better part of his high school years, working as an usher rather than going to class. Then he moved to Cleveland and pursued the house-painting business—”when the weather was nice,” the Mouse remembers—and passed his high school equivalency exam. Now he is a dean’s list student in communications.
Of course Mouse and Mackey beat DePaul’s butt in January 1986 at the Allstate by 15! This is a DePaul team that made the NCAA Tournament and lost in the Sweet 16.
This Cleveland State team had guys with the following nicknames, really:
The Mouse, Iceberg Slim, the Gigolo, the Identified Flying Object, Vinnie Vandalism, and Black Rambo. Who wouldn’t have wanted to watch this team?
Anyway, Cleveland State made the Sweet 16, beating Bobby Knight’s Indiana, St. Joe’s, and then losing to David Robinson’s Navy by 1. What a run!
So let’s talk about their coach, Kevin Mackey, the dude who was a wild recruiter finding Bol and others, lived life on the wild side. On July 20, 1990, six days after being arrested for ‘alleged’ drunk driving, Mackey was fired from his job at Cleveland State. He had been arrested due to be pulled over after leaving a drug house. When his urine was analyzed, he had alcohol and cocaine in his system. That doesn’t go over well on your your performance review, and he was canned, and they lived happily ever after, not really. That was story time.
DePaul Class of 2020
We get to see our old buddy Algevon Eichelberger. For those of you who are just joining Blue Demon Nation, Eichelberger was part of the 1st recruiting class of the second coming of Dave Leitao, the class of 2020. Funny thing is, of the 4 recruits, only one man is left at DePaul.
6’8″ Eichelberger is getting plenty of playing time at the State of Cleveland. He had 21 points against Robert Morris and 19 against UNC-Wilmington.
Other luminaries from that class, 6 foot 10, REDACTED, who may or may not be the individual that may have lead to a few improprieties in the program, and 3 years of probation.
Brandon Cyrus, who now plays for University of California-Santa Barbara, is still offensively challenged, but I am sure a beast on the defensive end. Cyrus made an excellent choice in school and city to transfer to. Quite a winter upgrade in locale. Anyway, Cyrus’s DePaul legacy could be summed up in this gif:
However, the last man standing from that class is the one and only Devin Gage, who we all hope heals up to join the Blue Demons soon. Charlie Moore is practically begging for Gage to get his health back. Moore will probably help tape Gage’s ankle so that Charlie can get a breather during games.
Tale of the Tape
The match up map when The State of Cleveland’s offense goes against DePaul’s defense is basically a bunch of red colors going against a bunch of green colors. The Vikes are the worst 3-point shooting team in the country, while the Demons are the 31st best at defending the 3. The Clevelanders get blocked more than all but 3 teams in the nation, while the Men in Blue are 2nd in the nation at blocking. The Vikings turn the ball over 25% of the time, while DePaul forces their opponents to turn the ball over 24% of the time.
Who Can Hurt the Demons?
This is a real hard question. If you go game by game, no one sticks out. Let’s just make sure that Big Al does not hurt us. Cleveland State is severely offensive challenged.
What is Going to Happen on Wednesday?
Utter domination by DePaul.