The DePaul Blue Demons basketball program dates back to 1923 and their first taste of the NCAA Tournament occurred in 1943 when they reached the regional final and lost to the Georgetown Hoyas by a score of 53-49. During the 1980s, DePaul was a consistent presence in March as they made the tournament nine times in the decade. Overall, the Blue Demons have reached the Big Dance more than 20 times, winning over 20 times and advancing to the Final Four twice in program history
DePaul became a force in college basketball when they hired Ray Meyer as their head coach. In Meyer’s first season, the Blue Demons reached the Final Four. Under Meyer, DePaul went to 13 NCAA Tournaments including two Final Fours. Meyer was inducted into the basketball hall of fame and college basketball hall of fame after winning more than 700 games in his career. When Meyer retired after the 1984 season, his son Joey took over to continue DePaul’s run in the 1980s of reaching the tournament nine times in the decade.
The highlight of DePaul’s basketball program came in 1979 when Meyer led the Blue Demons to the Final Four. DePaul entered the tournament as the number 2 seed and advanced to the regional final against Indiana State that was led by future NBA legend Larry Bird. DePaul lost a heartbreaker by two points to end their most successful season in program history.
DePaul Blue Demons Recent NCAA Tourament History
In 2004, DePaul reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time in three seasons as the 7 seed. The Blue Demons won a double overtime thriller against Dayton in the first round before falling to the eventual national champion UConn Huskies. DePaul’s Drake Deiner scored 15 points and added 10 rebounds in defeat.