#25 DePaul Women's Basketball 2016-2017 Preview

DePaul Blue Demons
Overall Rank: #25
Conference Rank: #1 Big East
DePaul made a nice run to the Sweet Sixteen last season, upsetting Louisville along the way. If they hope to reach their fourth Sweet Sixteen in the last six seasons, the Blue Demons will have to find a way to replace Chanise Jenkins and Megan Podkowa. Returning Jessica January is a great place to start. January averaged 14.1 points per game and a team high 5.9 assists. She is a superb floor leader and a huge reason why DePaul committed just 12.3 turnovers per game last year. With January leading the way, this is a team that will not beat themselves.
2015-16 Record: 27-9, 16-2
2015-16 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Doug Bruno
Coach Record: 614-318 at DePaul, 614-318 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Chanise Jenkins, Guard, 14.5 ppg
Megan Podkowa, Guard/Forward, 13.6 ppg
Brandi Harvey-Carr, Forward, 2.5 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Jessica January, Senior, Guard, 14.1 ppg
Brooke Schulte, Senior, Guard, 8.6 ppg
Jacqui Grant, Senior, Forward, 8.6 ppg
Ashton Millender, Junior, Guard, 7.6 ppg
Mart’e Grays, Junior, Forward, 5.9 ppg
Tanita Allen, Sophomore, Guard, 3.7 ppg
Amarah Coleman, Junior, Guard, 3.1 ppg
Lauren Prochaska, Junior, Guard, 1.8 ppg
Meri Bennett-Swanson, Junior, Forward, 0.9 ppg
Key New Players
Deja Cage, Freshman, Guard
Kelly Campbell, Freshman, Guard
Claire McMahon, Freshman, Guard
Chante Stonewall, Freshman, Forward
January will need some help in the scoring department though. Jacqui Grant, at 6-3, is the main force in the paint. As a regular starter last season she averaged 8.6 points and 5.0 rebounds. Jenkins and Podkowa did a lot of outside shooting though and that is where Brooke Schulte and Ashton Millender will need to step up. Schulte was relatively inconsistent last season, especially when it came to three-point shooting, but she is an experienced senior who started all 36 games last year. Millender provided an offensive spark off of the bench during her sophomore season, but now she will likely step into the starting lineup. Millender connected on 35.9 percent of her 145 three-point attempts last season. Incoming freshman Kelly Campbell will eventually replace January at the point, but she is a versatile player who has the size and scoring prowess to see major minutes off of the ball as well. And size could be an issue with this group. Podkowa was a great rebounder and a lot will be asked of Grant and junior Mart’e Grays to help replace that production.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 80.9 (6th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 65.5 (211, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.9 (13, 1)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.6 (323, 9)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.9 (10, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.3 (30, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 69.8 (168, 6)
Rebound Margin: 4.4 (62, 2)
Assists Per Game: 20.7 (2, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.9 (23, 3)
Madness 2016 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#96 Kelly Campbell