It wasn’t until his senior season at Lake Clifton High that Cleveland Melvin emerged as a front court standout. Less than a month into his freshman campaign at DePaul University, Melvin is making an impact.

He received his first start Tuesday evening against Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The 6-foot-8 forward scored 11 points as the Blue Demons posted a 61-47 decision. 

“He’s getting very comfortable,” DePaul coach Oliver Purnell said of Melvin to the Chicago Tribune. “He understands the system a little better. He understands the defense a little better. He’s playing much harder than he did.”

Melvin followed with a 15-point,, six rebound effort in a 73-51 loss to Indiana State Wednesday. He leads the Big East Conference school in blocks (16) and is second in shooting percentage (.545). 

Melvin was the first signee for Purnell, a Maryland assistant in the 1980s who led Clemson for seven seasons before taking over the Blue Demons. Melvin played for Notre Dame Preparatory School in Massachusetts last season.

At Lake Clifton in 2008-09, Melvin averaged 17 points, 11 rebounds and five blocked shots, earning All-Metro first-team honors. Along with Will and Antonio Barton, the Lakers went 28-0 and claimed the Class 3A state championship.