The DePaulia

History repeats itself: Bruno collects 700th win in a familiar place

Doug+Bruno+picks+up+win+No.+700+in+the+same+spot+he+won+his+600th+on+Jan.+15%2C+2016.%0A%28Photo+Courtesy+of+DePaul+Athletics%29
Doug Bruno picks up win No. 700 in the same spot he won his 600th on Jan. 15, 2016.
(Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

Doug Bruno picks up win No. 700 in the same spot he won his 600th on Jan. 15, 2016. (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

Doug Bruno picks up win No. 700 in the same spot he won his 600th on Jan. 15, 2016. (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

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INDIANAPOLIS — Just over two years ago, DePaul head coach Doug Bruno won his 600th game with a win over Butler at Hinkle Fieldhouse. Friday night, history repeated itself as a Bruno picked up win No. 700 following an 86-68 victory over Butler, adding another chapter to an already storied coaching career.

After the game, Bruno thanked all his players, assistant coaches and administrators that have helped him get to this point.

“It’s about all the players that have played for us,” Bruno said. “I haven’t won any games, the players have won 700 games when I’ve been their coach, but the players won every game and I’ve been blessed to have great players, assistant coaches and a great administration at DePaul.”

After falling behind early by 14 points due to their inability to slow down Butler’s Whitney Jennings, the Blue Demons responded with a 17-0 run spanning the second and third quarter to open a lead they would not relinquish. Bruno was proud of his team and said this was an important win for them against a talented team with some good wins already.

“I think this is a really special group, I’m really proud of this group,” Bruno said. “At the same time, this game tonight is about their 19th win so much more than it is a coaches 700th win, each player gets to write a legacy of four seasons, this is their 19th win and their one-in-a-row for the 19th time.”

That one-in-a-row mentality is something Bruno credits as one of the key mindsets he has preached and believes it’s important for coaches looking to build a successful tenure at a program.

“I really believe in the concept of one-in-a row,” Bruno said. “We preach this one-in-a-row thing, I’ve been preached one-in-a-row my whole life, and if you’re going to last in this business of coaching, then the ones-in-a-row are going to add up and that’s what’s happened here is the ones-in-a-row have added up.”

Sophomore forward Chante Stonewall finished with 16 points and six rebounds in a key DePaul road win (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

Sophomore Chante Stonewall said playing under Bruno and helping him pick up a milestone win is something she’s very happy to have done.

“One word is legacy,” Stonewall said. “It’s a great legacy and I’m happy to be a part of it.”

Junior Mart’e Grays echoed Stonewall’s comments and also said she considers him a father figure off the court.

“We joke around a lot and say there goes our dad,” Grays laughed. “He’s like our second father in most cases; seriously, he’s a great person to be around.”

After beginning as a player at DePaul in 1968, Bruno said he is blessed to be at DePaul for 32 seasons. Bruno says he owes a lot to his former coach Ray Meyer, assistant coach Frank McGrath and former athletic director Gene Sullivan, who Bruno served as an associate head coach under at Loyola.

“I love DePaul and I owe everything I’ve ever done in coaching to coach Ray Meyer and coach Frank McGrath, Ray was the coach here that gave me an opportunity to play,” Bruno said. “We have nothing here without coach Ray Meyer giving me a chance in ‘68 to play for him, coach Frank McGrath was his assistant here and was very, very good to me and Gene Sullivan, the three people the buildings are named after.”

After also picking up win No. 600 in the arena the famous movie “Hoosiers” was filmed, Bruno said Hinkle was a special place to coach in and one he always enjoys coming to.

“It’s been an honor to coach in Hinkle all these years,” Bruno said. “I got to coach on the men’s side here for eight years, and we had some really storied battles down here, and we’ve been coaching down here ever since Butler has been in the league. I’ve been down here to watch the State Championship in recruiting many times; it’s just a great place to always enter and watch and for us to come back and play, it’s just a special place.”

With the win, Bruno joins an exclusive group of coaches that includes names such Pat Summitt,

Tara VanDerveer, Geno Auriemma, Muffet McGraw, Andy Landers and others to win 700 games. Bruno stressed it was more about the players than him, but he’s proud to a part of a community of great coaches, that includes those in their first year as well.

“These are numbers, those are great coaches and, more importantly great people, and I’ve been blessed to know those people,” Bruno said. “Obviously Geno and I have been very close with the Olympics, coach Summitt and I were very close, coach Jim Foster just got his 900th win; we’re very close. The community of coaches and the community of the sport is so much bigger than any one game or any one person, so I’m just proud to be a member of the community of coaches.”

Bruno got off to a headstart to reaching win No. 800 with a win over Xavier on Sunday afternoon after the Musketeers three-point shot was overturned in the final seconds.

 

 

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History repeats itself: Bruno collects 700th win in a familiar place