Free NCAA Picks: Cal Poly vs. DePaul

Brandon Young is averaging 17.5 ppg for the 8-3 DePaul Blue Demons
Cal Poly vs. DePaul
Tip off: 8:30 PM EST
Spread: DePaul -3
Total: 130


Last season, the Mustangs finished 15-15 with a 10-6 record in Big West play. They lost in the first round of the Big West Tournament to UC Riverside in overtime.

Their defense was outstanding: In conference play, the Mustangs gave up only 0.94 points per possession, while managing nearly a point themselves (hardly a feat, but given the defense, it was adequate). Their pace is slow and plodding, which causes their scoring to be low (63.5 ppg, 267th in the nation this season), and they were in fact the 4th slowest D-1 pace last season.

Their offense was the worst in the Big West at 2 point efficiency, 3 point efficiency, and free throw shooting. This year, however, they do have two players in double figures. David Hanson, a 6’5″ senior forward is putting up 11.0 points per game, but is shooting under 40% from the floor and 56% from the line. Teammate Amaury Fermin is not any better, despite being the other Cal Poly player in double digit scoring. The 6’3″ senior guard is scoring 10.1 points per game while dishing out 4.4 assists per night as well.

The Mustangs have won their last three games against San Jose State, Menlo College, and Fresno State. In the game against Fresno, Hanson and Fermin combined for 24 points and Drake U’u put up 11, as well. The Mustangs are now 8-3 and will face their first tough team since the loss to UNLV on November 22nd.


After finishing 7-24 last season and winning only one game in the Big East, the Blue Demons seem to have things in order this season. They are ranked 27th in the nation in scoring (79.2 points per game), while they have won 8 of their 11 games, including their last four contests.

The Blue Demons are led by the duo of Cleveland Melvin and Brandon Young, who combine to average 36.2 points per game, and along with Jeremiah Kelly are the only players to play over 30 minutes a night for the Blue Demons. Melvin, a 6’8″ sophomore forward, has scored in double figures in all but one game (Loyola, IL), and he has scored over 20 in 4 games, including a 30 piont outbust against Chicago State, a game in which the two teams combined for 197 points, easily going over the college basketball odds.

Melvin chose DePaul over UCONN, so they are pleased he is working out as well has he has. He won Big East rookie of the year last year and is a great defender. DePaul’s improvement can certainly be attributed in large part to his continued excellence.

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