Jerian Grant was 8-of-10 from the field en route to 23 points in Saturday's win over Miami. It was his sixth 20-plus point effort of the season.

#8/9 Irish Begin Two-Game Road Swing At Virginia Tech

Jan. 21, 2015

Notre Dame Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Game 20
#8/9 Notre Dame (17-2, 5-1 ACC)
Virginia Tech (8-9, 0-4 ACC)

Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015
7 p.m. (ET)
Cassell Coliseum
Blacksburg, Va.

Regional Sports Network (check local listings)
Tim Brant (play-by-play)
Debbie Antonelli (analyst)

Broadcast on WatchND (free)
Sirius 91/XM 91
Check affiliates on Pg. 3 of notes packet
Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
Torrian Jones (analyst)


– No. 8/9 Notre Dame (17-2, 5-1) begins a two-game road swing Thursday night when the Irish travel to Blacksburg, Va., to take on the Virginia Tech Hokies (8-9, 0-4) at Cassell Coliseum. The Atlantic Coast Conference clash is slated for 7 p.m. (ET) and it is the only regular-season game slated between the two teams.
– Thursday’s game will be broadcast on the Regional Sports Network and ESPN3 with Tim Brant (play-by-play) and Debbie Antonelli (analyst) on the call.
– A free audio broadcast will be available on WatchND. Jack Nolan (play-by-play) and former Irish standout Torrian Jones (analyst) will be on the call. The broadcast can also be heard on The Notre Basketball Radio Network headed by WSBT 96.1 FM and 960 AM in South Bend. A complete affiliate list is available on page 3 of this notes packet. The broadcast also is available on Sirius 91/XM 91.
– Notre Dame currently is tied with Syracuse for second place in the ACC standings, while Virginia Tech is in 13th place.
– This will mark just the third appearance for an Irish team in Blacksburg. Notre Dame is 2-0 at Cassell Coliseum and last played there on Jan. 20, 2004 (a 74-63 victory).

– Notre Dame’s 17-2 record matches the program’s best 19-game start since the 1978-79 squad opened that season with a 17-2 record. A win on Thursday would give the Fighting Irish their best 20-game start since the 1973-74 team opened 19-1.
– The Fighting Irish are 5-1 in conference play for the first time since the 2004-05 season. Notre Dame’s best league start occurred in 2002-03 when the Irish opened BIG EAST action 6-1.
– This is the fourth time in Notre Dame’s conference era (since 1995-96) that the Irish suffered just one regular-season non-conference loss (2006-07, 2010-11, 2012-13, 2014-15).

– Notre Dame has won its first two conference road games for the first time since the 2004-05 season (Seton Hall & West Virginia). It’s the third time under head coach Mike Brey that the Fighting Irish have started conference road play 2-0 (2001-02 & 2004-05). Notre Dame has never won its first three conference road games.
– The Irish have played four of their six conference games at home, but now begin a stretch in which they will play three of their next four contests on the road to close out the month of January.

– Notre Dame ranks in the top five nationally in six categories: assist-to-turnover ratio (1st, 1.69), field goal% (2nd, 52.8%), fewest personal fouls per game (3rd, 13.7), fewest turnovers per game (4th, 9.2), won-lost% (4th, .895) and scoring margin (5th, +19.2).

– Thursday will be the sixth meeting between the two schools and the second matchup as Atlantic Coast Conference foes. Notre Dame topped Virginia Tech, 70-63, last season at Purcell Pavilion.
– The first time the two schools played was in the championship game of the 1973 National Invitation Tournament as the Irish dropped a 92-91 overtime decision at Madison Square Garden.
– The three other times Notre Dame and Virginia Tech have played were when the two schools were members of the BIG EAST Conference. The Irish won all three of those contests, including two in Blacksburg, Va.

– The Fighting Irish are 4-1 this season in games decided by five points or fewer. Notre Dame’s last four wins have been by a combined 16 points. The two Irish losses this season are by a combined seven points.
– Last season, Notre Dame was 6-7 in games decided by five points or fewer.

– Notre Dame’s 75-70 win over Miami on Saturday marked Notre Dame’s 13th victory in 14 games at Purcell Pavilion this season.
– Irish teams are 599-157 (.792) since the building opened during the 1968-69 campaign.
– Notre Dame squads have produced five undefeated campaigns at Purcell Pavilion (three under Mike Brey) — 1973-74 (15-0), 1985-86 (15-0), 2006-07 (18-0), 2007-08 (17-0) and 2010-11 (17-0).

– Senior Pat Connaughton made his 101st consecutive start on Saturday versus Miami. He is the third player in Notre Dame history to start at least 100 straight games. Chris Thomas (2002-05) started all 128 games during his Fighting Irish career and Pat Garrity (1995-98) was in the starting lineup during all 111 contests of his career. Torin Francis (2003-06) started all 113 games he played in an Irish uniform, but he missed the final 12 contests of his sophomore season.
– Connaughton has played in all 120 games during his career and has started all but 16 of those contests. He has 104 career starts. Connaughton became the 10th player in program history to notch at least 100 starts.
– Connaughton has been on the court for 201 of a possible 210 minutes over the last five contests. Last season, Connaughton played every minute of eight games, including six ACC contests.
– Connaughton is within one rebound of 700. He would become the 15th player in Notre Dame history to score 1,000 points and grab 700 rebounds.

– The Irish moved into the top 10 of both the Associated Press (#8) and USA Today Coaches (#9) polls for the first time since the 2010-11 campaign.
– It’s the highest ranking for the Irish since they were No. 5 in the AP poll prior to the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

– The Irish and Hurricanes met for 17th time on Saturday. The 75-70 victory gave Notre Dame a 9-8 edge in the series.
– Notre Dame improved to 64-63 under head coach Mike Brey in game decided by five points or fewer.
– The Irish had five players in double figures (Grant 23, Beachem 13, Vasturia, 11, Connaughton 10, Jackson 10) for the second straight game and seventh time this season.
– Notre Dame finished with only eight turnovers in the game. It was the fourth consecutive outing and 12th time this season with fewer than 10 turnovers in a game.
– The 17 assists on 27 baskets by the Irish marked the 12th time this season with 15-plus assists in a game.
– Notre Dame shot a season-best 85.7 percent (12-14) from the free throw line.
– Notre Dame trailed at halftime for the third straight game and fourth time this season. The Irish are 3-1 in those contests.
– The Irish trailed 43-31 (its largest deficit of the game) with 15:06 remaining in the second half. Notre Dame responded with a 21-7 run, including a 9-0 spurt, to take their first lead of the game (52-50 with 9:30 left). From that point, the Irish never trailed in the game.

– Notre Dame has overcome 12-point deficits (its largest of the season) in each of the last two games. The Irish trailed Miami by that margin in the second half on Saturday and they were down to Georgia Tech by 12 in the first half on Jan. 14.
– The Irish trailed Georgia Tech by eight points (38-30) at halftime and rallied to win 62-59. The eight-point halftime deficit was the largest overcome by the Irish en route to a victory since they came back from a 16-point margin (39-23) in a 74-70 overtime win at Villanova on Feb. 18, 2012. It also signified the largest halftime deficit overcome by any ACC team this season in a league contest.

– After leading the nation all season long in field goal percentage, Notre Dame now ranks second in that category at 52.8 percent. Gonzaga took over the top spot as the Zags are shooting 53.0 percent from the field.
– The Irish have shot 50.0 percent or better from the field in 14 of 19 games this season and they topped 60.0 percent in two contests — 65.6 percent (40-61) vs. Coppin State and 62.2 percent (28-45) against Grambling State.
– Six Notre Dame players are shooting better than 48.0 percent from the field (min. 50 attempts) — Zach Auguste (64.7%), V.J. Beachem (53.2%), Demetrius Jackson (53.1%), Jerian Grant (51.2%), Steve Vasturia (50.0%) and Pat Connaughton (47.7%).

– Notre Dame ranks second nationally in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.69) and fourth in fewest turnovers per game (9.2).
– The Irish have committed fewer than 10 turnovers in 11 games this season, including each of the last four contests (North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia Tech, Miami). Notre Dame had a season-low four turnovers against Michigan State (Dec. 3).

– The Irish rank 10th nationally – second in the ACC – in scoring (81.7 ppg.).
– Notre Dame’s 81.7 points-per-game average is the highest since the Irish averaged 85.4 ppg. during the 1976-77 campaign.
– The Fighting Irish have deposited 90-plus points six times this season.

– Four Fighting Irish players are averaging at least 13 points per game this season – Jerian Grant (16.7), Pat Connaughton (13.8), Zach Auguste (13.7) and Demetrius Jackson (13.6).
– Notre Dame has had at least four players reach double-figures in 16 of 19 games this season. The Irish have had five or more double-digit scorers on seven occasions. The Irish had a season-high six players reach double-figures against Purdue (Dec. 20).

– Four different Irish players have scored 20 or more points in a game this season. Jerian Grant has done it a team-best six times, while Zach Auguste (3), Pat Connaughton (2) and Demetrius Jackson (2) have netted 20-plus points on multiple occasions this season.

– Notre Dame is 10th nationally in made three-point field goals (167) and 15th three-point field goal percentage (.401). Both of those figures lead the ACC.
– The Irish are 20th nationally (first in the ACC) in three-pointers per game (8.8).
– The Irish have deposited 10 or more treys in a game six times this season (four times in the last seven games).
– Notre Dame made a season-best 14 three-pointers (14-of-25) against Chicago State (Nov. 29).
Pat Connaughton ranks 25th nationally in three-point percentage (.436) and 31st in made three-pointers (51). Both of those marks lead the ACC.
– Three Irish players are shooting 41.0% or higher from three-point range – V.J. Beachem (51.8%), Pat Connaughton (43.6%) and Demetrius Jackson (41.7%).
– Connaughton ranks eighth in Irish history in made three-point field goals (226).

– Senior guard Jerian Grant leads the ACC in assists per game (6.3), assist-to-turnover ratio (3.43) and total minutes (669). He is third in points (317) and fifth in points per game (16.7).
– He ranks ninth nationally in assists (120) and 11th in assists per game (6.3).
– Grant will be playing in his 101st career game on Thursday versus Virginia Tech.
– Grant scored a career-high 27 points versus Michigan State on Dec. 3.
– His 3.43 assist-to-turnover ratio ranks 11th nationally. His 2.57 career assist-to-turnover ratio ranks third among active Division I players.

Jerian Grant has had a hand in 39.9 percent of Notre Dame’s 1,553 points this season. He’s netted a team-high 317 points and his team-best 121 assists have led to 303 Fighting Irish points.
– Grant has assisted on 19 of Notre Dame’s 36 three-pointers in the last four games.
– Grant has had a hand in 90 of Notre Dame’s 167 three-pointers this season (53.9%). Grant has made 29 treys and he’s assisted on 61 others.

Jerian Grant has been named to the John R. Wooden Award Midseason Top 25 list. He also has been selected to the watch lists for the Oscar Robertson Trophy and the Naismith Trophy.

Pat Connaughton has reached double-figures in each of the last eight games, which is career-best streak and is the longest active streak for the Irish.
– Connaughton posted a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds on Saturday versus Miami. He has a team-high five double-doubles this season and his 12 career double-doubles are the most for any current Irish player.
– He tied a season-high mark with 21 points versus Virginia on Jan. 10. It was his second 20-plus point effort of the season (10th of his career). He was 4-of-9 from three-point range and he also hauled down a game-high tying eight rebounds against the Cavaliers.
– Connaughton leads Notre Dame in rebounding (8.3 rpg.) and is second in scoring (13.8 ppg.).
– He ranks 12th nationally (third in the ACC) in defensive rebounds per game (7.21) and he is eighth in the ACC in total rebounds per game (8.3).

Demetrius Jackson, Jerian Grant, Steve Vasturia, Pat Connaughton and Bonzie Colson started Saturday’s contest versus Miami. It was the first career start for Colson, while Jackson, Grant, Vasturia and Connaughton have started every game this season.
– Notre Dame used the same starting lineup in the first 17 games of the season and have sent out a different starting five in the last two contests.
– Last season, the Irish juggled its starting lineup throughout the campaign and ended up with 12 different rotations. Through 19 games last season, Notre Dame already had seven different starting lineups.

– Junior forward Zach Auguste ranks third nationally in field goal percentage at 64.7 percent.
– Auguste has been perfect from the field three times this season – 9-9 vs. Coppin State, 7-7 vs. Northern Illinois, 5-5 vs. Grambling State. His performance against Coppin State tied a Notre Dame record for most field goals without a miss in a single game.
– Auguste netted a career-high 26 points against Florida State in the ACC opener. Those were the most points ever scored by an Irish player in an ACC game. He made a career-best 11 field goals (on 15 attempts).
– That was his third 20-plus point effort of the season (20 vs. Navy, 21 vs. Coppin State).
– Auguste is averaging 13.7 points per game after posting a 6.7 ppg. mark last season (+7.0).

– Sophomore Demetrius Jackson had his career-best eight-game double-figure point streak snapped at Georgia Tech on Jan.14, but he still managed to pull down a career-high tying eight rebounds and dish out five assists while only committing one turnover.
– The Irish point guard has played 144 minutes over the last four games and has only turned the ball over twice in that time.
– He ranks first in the ACC (24th nationally) in steals (39) and is fourth in the league in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.52).
– Jackson has netted a career-high 22 points twice this season (Michigan State & Purdue).
– Jackson is averaging 13.6 points per game after notching a 6.0 mark last season (+7.6).

– Sophomore forward V.J. Beachem is 29-of-56 (51.8%) from three-point range this season. He is 12-of-22 (54.5%) from beyond the arc in the last four games (North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia Tech, Miami).
– His top three-point effort of the season came against Coppin State (Nov. 19) as he connected on 5-of-6 attempts.
– Beachem missed five straight games earlier this season due to injury, but returned to the floor Dec. 22 versus Northern Illinois.

Jerian Grant leads all current ACC players in career points (1,428), while Pat Connaughton is third (1,253).
– Connaughton leads all ACC players in career rebounds (699) and Grant is first in career assists (558).
– The senior duo has combined for 220 games played (202 of them starts), 2,681 points, 981 rebounds, 788 assists and 219 steals.
– Connaughton and Grant also have accounted for 7,379 minutes played on the court (33.5 mpg.).

Jerian Grant (1,428 points & 558 assists) is the sixth player in program history to score 1,000 points and dish off 500 assists. Four of those players have played during the Mike Brey era (Chris Thomas, Tory Jackson and Eric Atkins are the others).
– Grant’s 558 assists are the fifth-most on Notre Dame history.
Pat Connaughton (1,253 points & 699 rebounds) is the first Notre Dame player to notch 1,000 points and 600 rebounds since Luke Harangody (2006-10).

Jerian Grant (1,428) and Pat Connaughton (1,253) are the 55th and 56th members of Notre Dame’s 1,000-point club. Grant reached the milestone last season, while Connaughton did so in the 2014-15 season opener against Binghamton.
– Grant is 18th on Notre Dame’s career scoring list, while Connaughton is 32nd.
– Grant boasts a 14.3 points-per-game average during his career and Connaughton has a 10.4 mark.

– Notre Dame ranks second in the ACC in total steals (132). Individually, Demetrius Jackson is first in the league in steals (39), while Jerian Grant is eighth (27).
– The Irish have held 10 of 19 opponents under 40.0% shooting from the floor this season.
– The 39 points scored by Binghamton in the season opener marked the third time that a Notre Dame team under Mike Brey has held an opponent to under 40 points and the first time since 2007.
– The Irish limited Chicago State to just 42 points in the 90-42 win on Nov. 29. The 48-point margin of victory was the largest for Notre Dame since a 50-point win (101-51) over Rider on Dec. 28, 2006.

– Notre Dame’s season opener against Binghamton signaled the beginning of head coach Mike Brey’s 20th season as a head coach. The 82-39 win over the Bearcats marked his 400th career win as a college head coach. He has registered a 416-213 (.661) record in 19-plus seasons at Delaware and Notre Dame.
– Brey earned his 300th win at Notre Dame last season against Georgia Tech (Feb. 26, 2014). He has compiled a 317-161 (.663) record in his 14-plus seasons in South Bend. He is one of 19 active head coaches to have 300 or more Division I victories at their current institution.
– Only two other Notre Dame head coaches have reached the 300-win milestone. Digger Phelps led the Fighting Irish to a 393-197 record from 1971-91. George Keogan notched a 327-97 mark from 1923-43.

– Senior guard/forward Pat Connaughton has been named captain for the 2014-15 season. Connaughton served as one of four captains for the Irish a year ago and becomes the 22nd different Notre Dame men’s basketball player to serve as a captain in multiple seasons.
– Since the 1985-86 campaign, only four other players have served as lone captains for their Irish teams– Ken Barlow (1985-86), Tim Singleton (1990-91), Ryan Hoover (1995-96) and Rob Kurz (2007-08).

– In early August, the Fighting Irish squad traveled to Italy for a 10-day, four-game foreign tour. Notre Dame posted a 4-0 record. The Irish visited Rome, Perugia, Pesaro, Venice and Como during the trip.
– It was the program’s first foreign tour since 2008 when the Irish ventured to Ireland for 13 days.

– The Baltimore Orioles selected Irish swingman Pat Connaughton in the fourth round of June’s Major League Baseball Draft. He was the 121st pick overall.
– Connaughton spent part of June and July pitching for the Aberdeen IronBirds, the Class A Orioles’ affiliate.
– Connaughton finished his Fighting Irish baseball career last spring. He posted a 3.03 ERA and had an 11-11 record on the mound during his three seasons. He fanned 105 batters in 154.2 innings pitched.

– The University of Notre Dame once again claims the 2014 national championship for graduating student-athletes in all sports–in the process posting the top NCAA Graduation Success Rate (GSR) figure (99) for its student-athletes for the eighth straight year.
– The GSR number for all Notre Dame student-athletes rates the Irish first among the football-playing institutions in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A). The 2014 NCAA figures are based on entering classes from 2004 through 2007.
– Twenty-one of Notre Dame’s men’s and women’s athletic programs posted GSR numbers that rank them best in the nation within their sports (including 20 perfect 100 scores)– and 11 produced federal graduation rates that led all NCAA FBS institutions (including eight perfect 100 scores). Men’s basketball at 100 tied for first with 14 other schools.
– Five Irish women’s programs had perfect 100 federal rates ranking them first within their sports among the NCAA FBS subset. Six Irish men’s programs had federal rates ranking them first within their sports (three with perfect 100 scores) among the NCAA FBS subset. Men’s basketball at 85 ranked tied for first with Penn State.
– Five Irish women’s programs had perfect 100 federal rates ranking them first within their sports among the NCAA FBS subset. Six Irish men’s programs had federal rates ranking them first within their sports (three with perfect 100 scores) among the NCAA FBS subset. Men’s basketball at 85 ranked tied for first with Penn State.