ROSEMONT, Ill. -- Casey Mitchell scored 18 points, and West Virginia beat DePaul 67-65 after blowing a 14-point lead in the second half on Tuesday night.
With a 58-44 lead with about 10 minutes remaining, the Mountaineers (9-4, 1-2) appeared to be in good shape after opening Big East play with losses to St. John's and Marquette. Instead, they couldn't hang on against the conference's worst team.
Things got real interesting in the closing minutes when DePaul's Jeremiah Kelly buried a 3-pointer after a turnover to make it a two-point game and then hit another with 1:30 left to tie it at 63 with about 1:30 left after a free throw by Cam Thoroughman.
Darryl Bryant answered with a three-point play to give West Virginia a three-point lead. DePaul's Brandon Young hit two free throws with 49.9 seconds left to make it 66-65, but the Mountaineers hung on.
John Flowers hit the second of two free throws with 0.9 seconds left after Young missed a jumper from the wing, sending DePaul (6-9, 0-3) to its 16th straight loss against conference opponents.
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Forward Kennedy Meeks, who has averaged 9.4 points and 6.5 rebounds at North Carolina, has pulled out of the NBA draft and will return to the Tar Heels.
Cal big man Ivan Rabb could have been selected in the top 10 of the NBA draft. Instead, he's returning to Berkeley to make himself, and the Golden Bears, stronger.
Devin Williams' decision last month to sign with an agent and enter the NBA draft has left West Virginia in a tough spot.