Sept. 9, 2005
Notre Dame, Ind. –
Visits to the Joyce Center by Michigan, Syracuse, Georgetown, Villanova, Marquette and DePaul highlight a 16-game regular-season home schedule for the 2005-06 Notre Dame men’s basketball team. Six of the 27 contests this season are slated for national television.
The Irish will make four appearances on ESPN versus Alabama, Villanova and Louisville and DePaul and two on ESPN2 against Michigan and Villanova. In addition, Notre Dame’s game against North Carolina State is scheduled for broadcast on ESPN Classic.
The Irish will once again play 16 BIG EAST games. With the expansion of the league to 16 teams, Notre Dame will play three teams twice (home and away) and 10 teams once in the new format. The three repeat opponents will be Providence and BIG EAST newcomers DePaul and Marquette, two long-time Notre Dame rivals. The Irish are not scheduled to play Cincinnati and St. John’s during the regular season.
Notre Dame faces a strong non-conference slate that features a matchup against North Carolina State at the Wooden Classic in Indianapolis, Ind. (Nov. 26), a home game against Michigan (Dec. 3) and a road test at Alabama (Dec. 7).
The Irish open up the campaign by playing eight of their first 11 games at home. Following two exhibition games against Lewis (Nov. 3) and Quincy (Nov. 11), Notre Dame faces Lafayette (Nov. 20) and Hofstra (Nov. 22) in consecutive home tests.
Coach Mike Brey’s squad will play in the Wooden Classic at the Conseco Fieldhouse for the first time since November of 2000 when the Irish take on North Carolina State in a game televised by ESPN Classic. It will mark seventh meeting ever between the two schools and the first since February of 1983. In its only appearance at the Wooden Classic, Notre Dame defeated Cincinnati 69-51. The Wolfpack advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2005.
Michigan pays a visit to the Joyce Center for the first time since a 2000 first-round loss to Irish in the NIT. This season’s contest marks the second straight December meeting between the two schools. Last year, the Wolverines earned a 61-60 decision in Ann Arbor.
Notre Dame makes a first-ever trip to Tuscaloosa, Ala., when the Irish play Crimson Tide in the matchup ever between the two schools. The two previous meetings were in New Orleans, La. The last time the two teams faced each other was in December of ’01 in the Sugar Bowl Tournament with the Crimson Tide defeating the Irish 79-76.
Before heading into conference play in January, Notre Dame plays five of its final six games in December at home. Florida International (Dec. 10), Niagara (Dec. 21), Columbia (Dec. 23), Fordham (Dec. 28) and Wofford (Dec. 30) all make visits to the Joyce Center. The only road contest is against IPFW at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne, Ind. (Dec. 18).
The BIG EAST slate tips off with back-to back road outings at Pittsburgh (Jan. 4) and DePaul (Jan. 7), but the Irish conclude the month with four of five league contests at home. The conference opener at home will be against Syracuse on Jan. 11, followed by a matchup with Providence (Jan. 140. After a road game at Marquette (Jan. 20), Notre Dame plays Georgetown (Jan. 24) and Villanova (Jan. 28) at home.
The Irish begin February with contests at West Virginia (Feb. 1) and at Louisville (Feb. 4). The Mountaineers advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight in ’05, while the Cardinals were Final Four participants. Notre Dame then plays consecutive home games against Rutgers (Feb. 8) and South Florida (Feb. 15) before back-to-back road contests at Seton Hall (Feb. 18) and Connecticut (Feb. 21).
The final three games of the regular season will be against Notre Dame’s repeat opponents — versus Marquette (Feb. 24), at Providence (March 1) and home against DePaul (March 4).
The BIG EAST Championship will take place March 8-11 at Madison Square Garden. Twelve teams will qualify for the tournament field.