Emanuel mum on where he wants DePaul basketball team to move back to the city

October 1, 2012

Quinn Ford

(Flickr/SD Dirk)
DePaul Blue Demons take on UCLA in 2008.

DePaul University has announced it wants to move its men’s basketball games into Chicago from the western suburbs.

Crain’s Chicago Business reported the University is considering the United Center or a new facility to be built near McCormick Place. Mayor Rahm Emanuel is reportedly pushing for the new arena.

At an unrelated press conference on Monday, Emanuel would not confirm that. Instead, he said he does not care where the team ends up as long as it’s in Chicago.

“DePaul’s been looking at this or thinking about it for 15 years. I’ve been mayor for only about 15 months, but my goal is to make [them] pick Chicago,” Emanuel said. “It will be a win for DePaul. It’ll be a win for the city of Chicago, and wherever they decide to locate, I want it to be in the boundaries of the city of Chicago because I think that will be a win across the board."

Emanuel would not comment directly about any plans to build a new arena near McCormick Place.

"I think you guys got it. I'm not answering the question. I'm going to basically go with what I got which is it's a win for the city of Chicago, but that is now the fifth question with the same answer."

DePaul spokesman Greg Greenwell would not comment on possible locations for the move, but did issue this statement from the University:

“As noted in our strategic plan V2018, one of DePaul’s goals is to seek opportunities to bring men’s basketball back into the city. To that end, DePaul will consider any proposal that will help us accomplish that goal. As of now, however, nothing definitive has been forthcoming.”

DePaul’s men’s team has played at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont since 1980. Before that, the Blue Demons’ home court was Alumni Hall in Lincoln Park.