DePaul’s Cleveland Melvin Emerging as one of Big East’s Top Freshman



For the third time in four weeks, DePaul freshman forward Cleveland Melvin was named Rookie of the Week by the BIG EAST Conference. Melvin is the first Blue Demons to pick up the honor three times in a season.

Melvin averaged an impressive 23.0 points and 10.5 rebounds in games against Seton Hall and Connecticut last week. He opened the week with 21 points, nine rebounds and two assists against the Pirates before registering his first career double-double with 25 points and a career-high 12 rebounds against the Huskies.

In addition to becoming the first DePaul player to earn BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honors, Melvin is also the only Blue Demon to pick up the award in back-to-back weeks. He was also named the top newcomer on Dec. 27 and Jan. 3.

Melvin has reached double-figures in 10 straight games and scored at least 20 points in five of the last six outings. In BIG EAST games only, he is ranked third in the league in scoring with 23.2 points per game and fourth in rebounding with 8.3 rebounds per game.

He is one of four DePaul players to earn the league honor joining Brandon Young, Wilson Chandler and Dar Tucker. Chandler picked up the award twice during the 2005-06 season and Tucker received the recognition once during the 2007-08 campaign. Young was named the league’s Rookie of the Week on Dec. 6.

For the second time this month, a DePaul freshman has earned the BIG EAST’s Rookie of the Week honor with Cleveland Melvin grabbing the recognition today. Fellow rookie Brandon Young picked up the league’s weekly honor on Dec. 6 to mark the first time at DePaul that two freshmen have been named Rookie of the Week by the BIG EAST in the same season.

Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports , a Midwest webzine. He’s also a regular contributor to the Tribune’s Chicago Now network, Walter, Yardbarker Network, and Fox

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