Jan. 18, 2011
#16/16 Notre Dame vs. #25/- Cincinnati
Wednesday, Jan. 19 – 7:00 p.m. (EST)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center (9,154) – Notre Dame, Ind.
John Saunders (play-by-play)
Fran Fraschilla (analyst)
Radio: Affiliate listings on page 7; Broadcast also on UND.com
Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
Jordan Cornette (analyst)
#16/16 IRISH RETURN HOME TO FACE #25/- CINCINNATI ON WEDNESDAY
- Notre Dame (14-4, 3-3) returns home following two consecutive road games to face Cincinnati (16-2, 3-2) on Wednesday. Tip-off against the Bearcats in slated for 7:00 p.m. (ET) inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center. The Irish will look to snap their two-game losing skid. After starting the season 15-0, Cincinnati has dropped two of its past three games.
- This will be the 10th meeting all-time between Notre Dame and Cincinnati. The Irish lead the series 6-3. Five of the meetings have occurred since Cincinnati joined the BIG EAST in 2005. The Irish are 3-2 in those encounters. The two teams split last season’s two showdowns. Notre Dame won the last meeting, 83-65, on Feb. 4, 2010, at Purcell Pavilion. The Irish are 3-0 at home against the Bearcats.
- Notre Dame has a 14-4 record for the second straight season. The Irish are 3-3 in BIG EAST play for the third straight season.
THE LAST TIME VERSUS THE BEARCATS
- Tim Abromaitis netted 22 points on 6-10 shooting, including a 3-4 mark from three-point range, in the last encounter with Cincinnati, an 83-65 home win for the Irish on Feb. 4, 2010. Ben Hansbrough deposited 12 points, in addition to dishing out nine assists. Luke Harangody registered game-high totals in points (37) and rebounds (14) for the Irish.
- Notre Dame’s 25 assists established a school record for a BIG EAST game.
IN THE POLLS
- Notre Dame is 16th in both the Associated Press poll and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. Cincinnati is 25th according to the AP and the Bearcats are not in the top-25 of the coaches poll, yet they are receiving votes.
- There currently are 10 Irish opponents ranked in the AP top-25 poll. The Irish are 3-2 against those squads so far this season.
HOME SWEET HOME
- The Fighting Irish are 11-0 at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center this season. Notre Dame has won 80 of its last 86 (.930) home games and is 34-5 (.872) in its last 39 BIG EAST home contests.
- Notre Dame is averaging 84.7 points per game in its 11 home games this season, while the Irish average 56.3 points in their three true road games, all BIG EAST contests. The Fighting Irish are shooting 48.6% from the field at home, including a 42.1% mark from three-point range. Notre Dame is shooting 41.1% from the field and 25.0% from three-point range in its away games.
- In three BIG EAST home contests this season, Notre Dame is averaging 72.7 points per game. The Irish are shooting 44.2% from the field in those games, including 40.4% from three-point range.
GET TO 60
- Notre Dame has scored less than 60 points in its four losses this season. The Irish are 2-4 this season when scoring fewer than 60 points. The Irish are averaging 56.8 points per game in the four setbacks and 81.1 points in their 14 victories.
- The Irish are surrendering 62.6 points per game in their wins and they are allowing 73.2 points per game in their losses.
A IS FOR ABROMAITIS
- Tim Abromaitis has scored in double figures in all but two games (California and Kentucky) this season. Abromaitis is Notre Dame’s leading rebounder (6.9 rpg) and his points-per-game average (15.5) ranks second on the team.
- He has reached double-figures in points in nine straight games, which is a personal-best streak and is the top active streak on the team.
- Abromaitis has scored in double-figures in 13 straight regular-season BIG EAST games. He has registered double-figures in 22 out of 24 BIG EAST regular-season games over the past two seasons.
- He has led the Irish in scoring six times this season and in rebounding a team-high nine times.
- Abromaitis has a team-high seven games with 20-plus points this season. He has 15 career games with at least 20 points.
- Abromaitis has two double-doubles this season. He has three career double-doubles. He has grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds twice this season (California and UMBC).
- Abromaitis has deposited at least three treys in a game eight times this season. Abromaitis matched a career-high total with five made three-pointers (on seven attempts) against Georgetown (Dec. 29).
HANSBROUGH HELPS IN MANY WAYS
- Senior guard Ben Hansbrough has led the Irish in scoring a team-best eight times this season. He is averaging a career-best and team-high 15.9 points per game. Hansbrough has a team-best 67 assists (3.7 apg) and a team-high 23 steals.
- He has scored 20-plus points six times this season and 13 times in his career (nine times at Notre Dame). Hansbrough has reached double-digits in 39 of his 52 career games with the Irish.
- Hansbrough has scored in double-figures 16 times this season, which ties him with Tim Abromaitis for the team’s most double-digit games.
- Hansbrough was named the BIG EAST Player of the Week on Jan. 10 for his efforts in wins over Connecticut (Jan. 4) and St. John’s (Jan. 8). Hansbrough averaged 23.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.5 steals in the two victories. It was his first career BIG EAST player-of-the-week award.
- Hansbrough netted 21 points, grabbed five rebounds and dished out four assists as the Irish topped the eighth-ranked Huskies 73-70. He also helped hold Connecticut guard Kemba Walker, the nation’s leading scorer at the time, to an 8-23 shooting night.
- In the 76-61 victory over St. John’s, Hansbrough deposited a career-high 26 points. He also had four rebounds, three assists and matched a career-high total in steals with four.
- Hansbrough saw his personal-best 10-game double-digit point streak come to an end versus Marquette (Jan. 10) as he netted nine points. That streak tied him with Carleton Scott for the team’s best double-figure scoring streak this season.
ATKINS ASSISTING THE IRISH
- Freshman point guard Eric Atkins is coming off two solid outings. At St. John’s on Sunday, he scored eight points and dished out a career-high seven assists. He also matched a career-high total with three steals. All eight of his points came from the free throw line as he went 8-10. The eight makes were a career-best total, while the 10 attempts matched a career-high mark.
- Versus Marquette on Jan. 10, Atkins scored a career-high – and team-best – 15 points. His previous high was 12, which he has achieved three times this season. Atkins has scored in double-figures five times this season.
- Atkins is averaging 7.1 points per game and he is second on the team with 64 assists (3.6 apg). He is averaging 28.6 minutes per game and boasts a team-best 2.7 assist-to-turnover ratio, which ranks 19th nationally.
- He has dished out five-plus assists in a game five times this season.
- Atkins has started the past four contests and he has five starts this season. He is the first Notre Dame freshman to start multiple games since Luke Harangody and Tory Jackson did so during the 2006-07 season.
- By scoring 10 points against Liberty (Nov. 14) and 12 more versus Chicago State (Nov. 17), Atkins became the first Irish freshman to reach double figures in consecutive games since Harangody did so during the 2006-07 campaign.
- Notre Dame reached 14 wins the quickest (date wise) in program history when the Irish topped St. John’s 76-61 on Jan. 8. The previous fastest was last season when the Fighting Irish secured their 14th win on Jan. 9, 2010.
- This season and the 2006-07 campaign are the only two seasons during Notre Dame’s BIG EAST era that the Irish suffered just one regular-season non-conference loss.
- Notre Dame’s loss to Kentucky on Dec. 8 was the latest calendar date the Irish had suffered their first setback of the season since the 1979-80 campaign. Notre Dame started that season 7-0 before suffering its first loss to Kentucky (86-80) on Dec. 29, 1979.
- Notre Dame’s 8-0 start was the fifth in program history and the best ever for the Irish under head coach Mike Brey. It also matched the longest win streak for an Irish team coached by Brey. Notre Dame’s last eight-game win streak came during Brey’s first season when his 2000-01 squad rattled off eight straight BIG EAST conference regular-season victories.
IRISH ON A ROLL
- Notre Dame is 20-6 (.769) in its last 26 games dating back to last season. Following a double-overtime loss to Louisville (91-89) in Freedom Hall on Feb. 17, 2010, the Irish won their final four regular-season games in 2009-10 (Pittsburgh, Georgetown, Connecticut and Marquette) and won two games in the BIG EAST Tournament (Seton Hall and Pittsburgh) before losing to West Virginia in the conference championship semifinals and to Old Dominion in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament.
WHAT AN OPENING STRETCH
- Notre Dame opened BIG EAST play with an unprecedented stretch as the Irish faced three top-10 foes in its first three contests. Notre Dame went 2-1 against those foes. The Irish defeated No. 9/9 Georgetown 69-55 at home before falling at No. 5/5 Syracuse 70-58. Notre Dame concluded the stretch with a 73-70 triumph of No. 8/9 Connecticut at home.
TAKING DOWN A TOP-10 FOE
- The 73-70 victory over No. 8/9 Connecticut on Jan. 4 coupled with the 69-55 victory over No. 9/9 Georgetown on Dec. 29 marked the first time since the 2002-03 campaign that Notre Dame defeated two top-10 teams in a three-game span.
- Prior to the wins over Georgetown and Connecticut, the last time Notre Dame recorded back-to-back home wins over top-10 teams was during the 1960-61 season when the Irish knocked off No. 7 DePaul (61-58 on Jan. 17, 1961) and No. 7 St. John’s (64-63 on Feb. 2, 1961).
- The last time Notre Dame defeated three top-10 teams in the same season was during the 2008-09 campaign. That season, the Irish took down No. 6/7 Texas (81-80), No. 9/10 Georgetown (73-67) and No. 5/7 Louisville (90-57).
- Notre Dame has held 16 of its 18 opponents to 50% or less from the field this season. The Irish have held their foes under 40% on eight occasions and under 30% once (California).
- Notre Dame opponents are shooting 41.0% from the field and 33.2% from three-point range.
BREY REACHES BIG EAST MILESTONE
- Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey notched his 100th BIG EAST regular-season victory with the 73-70 win over Connecticut on Jan. 4. Brey is the sixth coach in BIG EAST Conference history with 100 regular-season league wins. Brey’s Irish teams are 101-71 (.587) all-time in regular-season BIG EAST play.
- Mike Brey is in his 11th season along the Irish sidelines. He is the third-longest tenured coach in the BIG EAST, behind only Jim Boeheim of Syracuse and Jim Calhoun of Connecticut. Brey stands sixth all-time in career BIG EAST victories (both regular-season and tournament) with his 107-81 (.569) mark. He is one of eight coaches in BIG EAST history to record 100 conference wins.
BIG EAST All-Time Winningest Coaches By Victories
(Includes conference regular-season and championship games)
|1. Jim Boeheim, Syracuse||376-205 (.647)|
|2. Jim Calhoun, Connecticut||293-165 (.640)|
|3. John Thompson, Georgetown||231-123 (.653)|
|4. Lou Carnesecca, St. John’s||139-80 (.635)|
|5. Rollie Massimino, Villanova||123-92 (.572)|
|6. Mike Brey, Notre Dame||107-81 (.569)|
|7. Jay Wright, Villanova||102-70 (.593)|
|8. Jamie Dixon, Pittsburgh||100-41 (.709)|
MARTIN MAKING AN IMPACT
- Scott Martin notched his first career double-double versus Marquette (Jan. 10) as he tallied 10 points and a career-high 11 rebounds.
- Martin had his personal-best six-game double-figure scoring streak come to an end on Sunday at St. John’s. He has registered double-figures nine times this season and 23 times in his career.
- He has netted a season-high 15 points three times (Maine, Indiana State, UMBC). Those were his highest point outputs since he netted a career-high 17 points against Missouri State during his freshman season at Purdue.
- Martin did not play in 2008-09 due to NCAA transfer rules and he missed all of last season with an ACL injury.
PROTECTING THE BASKETBALL
- Notre Dame boasts a 1.49 assist-to-turnover ratio. The Fighting Irish rank eighth nationally in that category. The Irish have registered 308 assists on its 444 made field goals this season (.694). The Fighting Irish average just 11.5 turnovers per game, which is the 27th-best mark in the country.
- Notre Dame had a season-high 20 turnovers on Sunday at St. John’s.
- The Irish have had fewer than 10 turnovers in a game five times this season. Notre Dame’s season-low turnover total is eight, which has occurred twice (Gonzaga and Connecticut).
- Notre Dame has notched at least 20 assists in a game six times this season. The Irish had a season-high 29 assists (on 34 made field goals) versus Chicago State (Nov. 17). Notre Dame is 16th nationally in assists per game (17.1).
- Senior guard Ben Hansbrough leads the Irish with 67 assists (3.7 apg). Freshman point guard Eric Atkins is second with 64 (3.6 apg). Atkins has a team-best 2.7 assist-to-turnover ratio, which ranks 19th nationally and second in the BIG EAST.
- Three Notre Dame players, Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough and Carleton Scott, all have scored 20-plus points in a game this season. Abromaitis has accomplished the feat a team-best seven times. Hansbrough has done it six times, while Scott scored 20-plus points twice.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
- Four different Notre Dame players have led the team in scoring during a game this season. Ben Hansbrough has led the Irish in scoring a team-best eight times, while Tim Abromaitis has done so on six occasions. Carleton Scott has led the Irish in points three times, including one tie with Eric Atkins, who has posted a team-high point total twice this season.
- Notre Dame has had at least four players reach double-figures in points in the same game 10 times this season. At least five players have reached double-digits in the same contest three times.
- Six Notre Dame players (Abromaitis, Nash, Scott, Hansbrough, Cooley, Martin) reached double-figures in points against Maine. It marked the first time the Irish had six double-digit scorers since Jan. 14, 2003 (vs. DePaul).
- All five Notre Dame starters reached double-figures against Chicago State, Maine and Indiana State.
FIRST HALF FLURRY
- Notre Dame opponents are averaging just 28.4 points in the first half this season, while the Irish are averaging 37.8 points during the first stanza.
- The Fighting Irish have scored 40-plus points in the first half of play nine times this season (once in BIG EAST play).
- The Irish have trailed at halftime just four times this season (Georgia, Syracuse, Marquette and St. John’s). Notre Dame is 1-3 in those contests. Notre Dame is 13-0 this season when leading at the intermission.
- In the first half of their four losses, the Irish have been outscored by just 13 points combined (133-120). Notre Dame has been outscored by 53 points in the second half of its four setbacks (160-107).
LIVING LARGE AT THE LINE
- The Fighting Irish have 64 more made free throws than their opponents have attempts from the charity stripe. The Fighting Irish are 340-469 (.725) from the free throw line this season. Irish opponents are 199-276 (.721) from the line.
- The Irish are 13-0 this season when making more free throws than their opponent.
- Notre Dame has been in the bonus before the 10-minute mark of the first half six times this season, Georgia Southern (15:36), Chicago State (10:44), Gonzaga (10:50), Stony Brook (11:55), St. John’s (10:36) and St. John’s (11:47). Fighting Irish opponents have been in the bonus in the first half just a total of eight times this season.
- The Irish have made 20 or more free throws eight times this season. Notre Dame made a season-high 30 free throws, on 43 attempts, versus Georgia.
- Carleton Scott is shooting a team-best 88.2% (30-34) from the line. Tyrone Nash owns team-high totals in makes (76) and attempts (106) from the line for a 71.7% average. Nash entered this season as a career 56.7% shooter from the charity stripe (110-194).
- Against Maine, Notre Dame shot a season-best 92.6% from the free throw line (25-27). The Fighting Irish also shot above 90% from the charity stripe against Stony Brook as they connected on 11 of 12 shots (91.7%).
HITTING THE GLASS
- Notre Dame boasts a +6.0 rebound margin this season. The Irish have a +9.8 margin in their 14 wins, while they are -7.2 in their four losses. The Fighting Irish have held the advantage on the glass during all 14 of their wins, while they have been out-rebounded in their four losses.
- Notre Dame owns a 690-582 overall advantage on the glass this season. That mark includes a 206-174 edge in offensive boards.
- Tim Abromaitis has a team-best 124 rebounds (6.9 rpg), while Tyrone Nash has a team-high 44 offensive rebounds.
DRAINING FROM DEEP
- The Fighting Irish are 135-373 (.362) from three-point range this season. Notre Dame has hit 10 or more three pointers in a game five times this season, all wins. The Irish are 116-298 (.389) from three-point range in their 14 wins and they are 19-75 (.253) in the four losses.
- Notre Dame went 8-11 from three-point range in the first half against Maine (Nov. 22). The eight made treys matched a season-high total for a half. Notre Dame made eight three-pointers in the second half versus Chicago State (Nov. 17).
- Ben Hansbrough is shooting at a team-best 43.4% clip (43-99) from beyond the arc this season.
392 AND COUNTING
- Heading into the Cincinnati contest, Notre Dame has made at least one three-pointer in 392 straight contests dating back to the 1998-99 campaign. The Fighting Irish have made at least one three pointer during every game of the Mike Brey era. The last time an Irish team failed to hit a three-pointer in a game was in a 101-70 loss to Connecticut at the Hartford Civic Center on Jan. 12, 1999. Notre Dame finished 0-7 from beyond the arc in that contest. In 2008-09, the Irish set a single-season three-point record with 319.
IRISH FUN FACT UNDER BREY
- Notre Dame teams under Mike Brey have always ranked among the best teams in the nation and BIG EAST in assists and three-point shooting. In 11 seasons with Brey on the sidelines, Notre Dame is 70-9 when Irish teams have 20 or more assists and are 71-28 when making 10 or more three-pointers.
PLAYING IN THE POST
- Senior forward Tyrone Nash has led the Irish in assists five times this season. Nash has registered five or more assists in a game four times this season, including a career-high seven versus Chicago State (Nov. 17).
- Nash’s 50 assists (2.8 apg) rank third among all Notre Dame players. His 105 rebounds (5.8 rpg) rank second on the team, while he has a team-best 44 offensive rebounds.
- Nash’s three double-doubles tie him with Carleton Scott for the team lead in that category this season. Nash has four career double-doubles.
- Earlier this season, Nash registered double-figures in points in five straight games (Liberty, Chicago State, Maine, Georgia, California). It was the first time in his career that he reached double figures in five consecutive contests. He has 22 career games with 10-plus points.
- Seniors Tim Abromaitis (F), Ben Hansbrough (G), Scott Martin (G), Tyrone Nash (F) and Carleton Scott (F) have combined for 85 of a possible 90 starts this season. Nash, Abromaitis and Hansbrough have started all 18 games this season, while Martin has 17 starts. Scott started the first 14 contests of the season before suffering a hamstring injury versus Syracuse (Jan. 1). Notre Dame’s game-by-game starters are listed on page 11 of this notes packet.
- Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough and Tyrone Nash all have played in the past 53 contests. Nash and Hansbrough both have started all 53 of those contests. Overall, Nash has played in a team-best 68 straight contests. The last game he did not play in was at Cincinnati on Feb. 4, 2009.
CONSISTENCY FROM CARLETON
- Before going down with a hamstring injury against Syracuse on Jan. 1, senior forward Carleton Scott was one of Notre Dame’s top performers. Scott has scored in double-figures 10 times this season. He saw his 10-game double-digit scoring streak come to an end versus Georgetown (Dec. 29). That was the longest double-digit scoring streak for the Irish this season and it also was a career-best streak for Scott. He has reached double-digits 14 times in his career.
- Scott’s four made three-pointers against Stony Brook (Dec. 19) were a career-high total. He dished out a career-high six assists versus UMBC (Dec. 22).
- The 20-point effort against Stony Brook was Scott’s second straight game (and second of his career) with 20 or more points. He netted a career-high 23 points versus Gonzaga on Dec. 11.
- Scott’s three double-doubles this season tie him with Tyrone Nash for the team lead in that category.
- Carleton Scott‘s perfect 8-8 performance from the field against Stony Brook (Dec. 19) ranks in a tie for third all-time in program history. John Shumate was 9-9 versus Louisville on March 20, 1973, in the second round of the NIT. Keith Robinson also went 9-9 against UCLA on Dec. 17, 1989. Torin Francis was 8-8 versus Maryland on Dec. 7, 2002.
- Scott was 4-4 from three-point range against Stony Brook. Matt Carroll owns the program’s three-point perfection record as he went 6-6 against Tennessee-Chattanooga on Nov. 24, 2001.
- Senior forward Carleton Scott has a team-best 25 blocked shots this season (1.8 per game).
- Scott has blocked two or more shots in a game nine times this season. Scott tied a career-high total with a season-high four blocked shots against Indiana State (Nov. 30).
- Sophomore forward Jack Cooley is an efficient 30-49 (.612) from the field this season.
- Cooley scored a career-high 13 points on 6-7 shooting from the field against Maine on Nov. 22. It was the second double-digit scoring output this season for Cooley, who netted a then career-high 11 points versus Georgia Southern in the season opener.
PASSING THE TEST
- Notre Dame has recorded a perfect score of 100 percent in each of the last three Graduation Success Rate (GSR) figures released in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and is one of just 12 schools to earn a perfect 100 percent score in each of the last three years. The 11 other schools include Binghamton, Charleston Southern, Coastal Carolina, Colgate, Holy Cross, Davidson, Loyola of Maryland, North Carolina-Wilmington, Utah State, Wake Forest and Western Kentucky.
- In the recent set of GSR scores released in the fall, Notre Dame had the highest percentage of sports with 100 percent scores (for the fifth time in six years) among the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision institutions, with a .863 figure (19 of 22).
OLD SPICE CHAMPIONS
- Notre Dame won the Old Spice Classic in Orlando, Fla. (Nov. 25-28) by capturing wins over Georgia (89-83 in 2ot), California (57-44) and Wisconsin (58-51). It marked the first three-game in-season tournament victory for the Fighting Irish since winning the 2001 Hawaii-Pacific Thanksgiving Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii as the Irish defeated Hawaii-Pacific (98-58), Tennessee-Chattanooga (97-84) and Monmouth (85-48). Notre Dame also won the 2002 BB&T Classic in Washington, DC with wins over Maryland (79-67) and Texas (98-92).
- Notre Dame has played in an in-season tournament in each of the past five seasons and eight times during the Mike Brey era. Notre Dame is 18-6 all-time under Brey in in-season tournaments.
- In the Old Spice Classic, the Irish held California and Wisconsin to five and 19 points, respectively, in the first half of play.
- Notre Dame held California (16-61) and Wisconsin (20-57) to a combined 36-118 (.305) from the field during the final two games of the Old Spice Classic.
- Notre Dame out-rebounded Wisconsin 43-28 in the title game of the tournament.
- Notre Dame held a decisive free throw advantage in all three games of the tournament. The Irish made 20 more free throws than both Georgia (30-10) and California (26-6). Notre Dame made 16 more free throws (20-4) than Wisconsin in the title game.
- Notre Dame went a combined 13-14 from the charity stripe during both overtime periods in the 89-83 triumph of Georgia.
- Senior forward Tim Abromaitis was named the MVP of the Old Spice Classic as he averaged 14.0 ppg. and 8.7 rpg. during the three-game run. Fellow senior forward Carleton Scott also was named to the all-tournament team. Scott was the only Irish player to reach double figures in points during every game of the event.
ON A RUN
- Notre Dame used several key runs during the Old Spice Classic to secure the tournament title.
- After falling behind Georgia 38-25 early in the second half, Notre Dame erased the deficit by going on a 27-10 run to claim a four-point lead with 7:22 left in regulation. The Irish wound up winning 89-83 in double-overtime.
- After surrendering the game’s first basket to California, the Irish went on to hold a 21-5 halftime advantage over the Golden Bears. The Irish defeated Cal 57-44.
- In the championship game, Notre Dame trailed Wisconsin 43-32 with 9:21 left in regulation. The Fighting Irish finished the game on a 26-8 run to claim the 58-51 victory. Included in that stretch was a 15-0 run for the Irish.
BIG EAST TEAMS FIND SUCCESS IN PRESEASON TOURNAMENTS
- Notre Dame won the Old Spice Classic and was one of six BIG EAST teams to come away with an in-season tournament title during the month of November.
Notre Dame – Old Spice Classic
Connecticut – EA Sports Maui Invitational
Pittsburgh – 2K Sports Classic
Syracuse – Legends Classic
Georgetown – Charleston Classic
St. John’s – Great Alaska Shootout
Villanova – Preseason NIT Tip-Off
West Virginia – Puerto Rico Tip-Off
HANSBROUGH HITS 1,000 CAREER POINTS
- Senior guard Ben Hansbrough posted 20 points in the season opener against Georgia Southern (Nov. 12). With his 12th point of the contest, Hansbrough reached the 1,000th point mark for his career that spans two playing seasons at Mississippi State (2006-08) and one at Notre Dame (2009-10).
IRISH TAKE SHOT AT FIFTH STRAIGHT 20-WIN CAMPAIGN
- Notre Dame will be aiming for its fifth consecutive 20-win campaign and eighth in the last 11 seasons under head coach Mike Brey. The last time Irish teams reached the 20-win mark in five straight campaigns was from 1983-89 when those Notre Dame squads under Digger Phelps strung together six consecutive 20-win seasons.
- Notre Dame has earned appearances in the postseason in each of the last 11 years, which marks the longest stretch in school history. The Irish have been to the NCAA Tournament on six occasions and the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) five times during this current stretch. Under head coach Mike Brey, Notre Dame has played in the NCAAs six times and NIT four times.
BIG EAST FORMULA FOR SUCCESS
- Since his arrival at Notre Dame, head coach Mike Brey has led the Irish to a 101-71 (.587) record in BIG EAST regular-season games and a 6-10 mark in tournament play for an overall record of 107-81 (.569) against league foes. Brey’s Irish teams have won 10 or more conference regular-season games in six of his 10 seasons. Prior to his arrival at Notre Dame, Irish teams had just a 35-53 (.398) regular-season record from 1995-2000.
BIG EAST TURNAROUND
- During head coach Mike Brey‘s tenure, Irish teams have only had two losing seasons in BIG EAST play – 6-10 in 2005-06 and 8-10 in 2008-09. Since the 2005-06 campaign when the Irish finished 6-10 after beginning the BIG EAST regular-season with a 1-8 record, Notre Dame has gone 51-32 (.614) over the last 83 regular-season contests. In addition to Notre Dame, only four other BIG EAST teams have had records of .500 or better eight or more times – Pittsburgh and Syracuse (nine times) and Notre Dame, Connecticut and Villanova (eight times).
BIG EAST REPEATS
- For the fourth consecutive season, Notre Dame will meet Connecticut in a home-and-home series during the 2010-11 BIG EAST regular season. In addition to the Huskies, the Irish also are slated to play Marquette and St. John’s twice this season. This will be the fourth year since the expansion to 16 teams that the Conference will employ an 18-game regular-season slate with all teams playing each other once and three opponents twice in a home-and-away format. Notre Dame’s single-game home opponents will be Cincinnati, Georgetown, Louisville, Rutgers, Seton Hall and Villanova. The road slate also will feature visits to DePaul, Pittsburgh, Providence, USF, Syracuse and West Virginia.
IRISH TO APPEAR ON THREE BIG MONDAY BROADCASTS
- As part of its 18-game national television slate in 2010-11, Notre Dame will be part of three ESPN Big Monday broadcasts. The first appearance for the Fighting Irish came on Monday at Marquette. The ESPN Big Monday cameras will make their only appearance at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center at 7:00 p.m. (ET) on Feb. 28 when the Irish take on Villanova.
LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION
- More than half of the 144 regular-season BIG EAST Conference men’s basketball games will be seen on national television during the 2010-11 season, once again giving BIG EAST teams unprecedented exposure on the nation’s leading television outlets. In total, 73 of the regular-season contests will be on national television – either on CBS Sports, ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU. This will mark the fourth straight season in which all 144 regular-season league games will be televised.
106 YEARS AND STRONG
- The 2010-11 campaign marks the 106th season of basketball at Notre Dame and the 16th season as a member of the BIG EAST Conference. Notre Dame teams have posted a 1688-924 record for a .646 winning percentage. In 15 seasons as a member of the BIG EAST, the Irish own a 136-124 (.523) record all-time in conference regular-season play.
- Seniors Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough, Tyrone Nash and Carleton Scott will serve as captains during the 2010-11 season. All four are captains for the first time in their careers.
- This year’s Notre Dame roster features several players with some strong basketball bloodlines:
– Tim Abromaitis – His father, Jim, played basketball at the University of Connecticut (1975-80) and was drafted by the New Jersey Nets. His brother, Jason, played basketball at Yale (2003-07).
– Mike Broghammer – His uncle, Christian Laettner, played professional basketball for 13 seasons and was a member of the 1992 gold medal Dream Team. He played for Duke University (1988-92) and led the Blue Devils to national championships in 1991 and 1992.
– Joey Brooks – His father, Lott J. Brooks, III, played college basketball at Eckerd College (1974-78).
– Jerian Grant – His father, Harvey, played basketball at the University of Oklahoma (1986-88), and was the 12th pick overall in the 1988 NBA Draft and played from 1988-99 in the NBA. His uncle, Horace Grant, played at Clemson, and was the 10th overall pick in the NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls. He is the owner of four NBA championship rings. His older brother, Jerai, is a senior on the Clemson basketball team, while a younger brother, Jerami is a junior on the DeMatha basketball team.
– Ben Hansbrough – His brother, Tyler, played basketball at the University of North Carolina (2005-09). A three-time All-American, he was the 2008 National Player of the Year and led the Tar Heels to the 2009 national championship. Currently, he is in his second season with the Indiana Pacers, and was the 13th pick overall in the 2009 NBA Draft.
– Tom Knight – His father, Karl, played basketball at Bowdoin (1976-80).
- Jerian Grant is the first Irish basketball player from DeMatha High School to attend Notre Dame during the Mike Brey era. Brey played and coached at DeMatha and also is the alma mater of assistant coach Rod Balanis. Former Irish players who also played at DeMatha include Bob Whitmore (1967-69), Sid Catlett (1969-71) and Adrian Dantley (1974-76).
IRISH INK ONE FOR 2011
- Pat Connaughton, a 6-5, 195-pound swingman from Arlington, Mass., was the lone early-November 2011 signee for head coach Mike Brey.
- A four-year starter at St. John’s Prep in Danvers, Mass., Connaughton averaged 24.0 points and 17.9 rebounds in 2009-10 as he led St. John’s to one of the best seasons in program history as the squad finished with a 21-3 mark that included a 15-game win streak during the season. In addition, his squad won the Catholic Conference championship and finished the regular season with a 7-1 league record. His team was ranked seventh in the final Massachusetts state poll after making the school’s first appearance since 1974 in the Division 1 state finals.
- Connaughton was the only junior selected to the Boston Globe Super Team and the Boston Herald High Dream Team. He was selected as Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the Catholic Conference and was named to the Catholic Conference All-Star Team. In addition, he was selected as his team’s MVP and served as team captain.
- He is ranked 73rd nationally by Scout.com and 100th by ESPNU.
BREY SERVING AS CHAIRMAN OF THE NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL RULES COMMITTEE
- Mike Brey was elected chair of the 2010-11 NCAA Men’s Basketball Rules Committee in May 2010 and is serving his fourth year on the rules committee.
ADIDAS AND NOTRE DAME UNVEIL LIGHTEST, MOST TECHNOLOGICALLY ADVANCED COLLEGE BASKETBALL UNIFORMS
- At the start of the 2010-11 basketball season, adidas and the University of Notre Dame basketball teams unveiled the lightest and most technologically advanced college basketball uniforms ever. Designed and developed by adidas, the uniforms are 30 percent lighter and dry twice as fast as previous uniforms to help enhance the Fighting Irish’s performance by keeping players cooler, drier and more comfortable on the court.
- The new Notre Dame uniforms, made from 60 percent recycled materials, feature adidas’ Formotion technology, which reduces seams, decreases friction between the garment and the player’s skin and optimizes the player’s natural movement through specially constructed material. adidas reduced uniform weight and increased player comfort by switching front and back numbers from heavier, dense materials to a more breathable mesh.
- The new Notre Dame uniform absorbs moisture in less than three seconds as a result of adidas CLIMACOOL fabrics. The jersey moves heat and sweat away from the body through a combination of moisture management materials, ventilation channels and three dimensional garments, helping the uniform dry twice as quickly.
- Along with Notre Dame, 10 other schools will debut the new uniforms this season, including Cincinnati, Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina State, Tennessee, UCLA and Wisconsin.
- In addition to the NCAA teams wearing the new uniforms, all 30 NBA teams will wear Revolution 30 jerseys this season featuring similar adidas technology.