Nov. 23, 2010
Old Spice Classic – November 25, 26 & 28
Fieldhouse sponsored by HP at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
Irish Head To Old Spice Classic
– Notre Dame will step away from Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center for the first time this season to take part in the Old Spice Classic on Nov. 25, 26 and 28 in Orlando, Fla. The Fighting Irish begin play at 7:00 p.m. (ET) on Thursday versus Georgia at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Irish will then play either California or Temple in second-round action on Friday. In the third game of the tournament on Sunday, the Irish will play either Boston College, Texas A&M, Wisconsin or Manhattan.
– Thursday will mark the second meeting all-time between Notre Dame and Georgia. The Irish defeated the Bulldogs 88-85 during the 1993-94 campaign in Athens, Ga. For a complete list of Notre Dame’s series history versus the Old Spice Classic Field go to page 9 of this notes packet.
– Mike Brey is 8-7 all-time as a head coach versus teams from the SEC. Brey last posted a win over a team from the SEC when Notre Dame defeated Kentucky, 77-67, in the third round of the National Invitation Tournament on March 25, 2009, at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
Success In In-Season Tournaments Under Brey
– Under head coach Mike Brey, Notre Dame has captured two in-season tournament crowns. The Irish won 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 also has posted two runner-up finishes, at the 2002 Guardians Classic in Kansas City, Md., as the Irish lost to Creighton (80-75) in the title game and the 2008 EA Sports Maui Invitational when they fell to North Carolina (102-87) in the championship contest.
– Notre Dame is competing in an in-season tournament for the fifth straight season and for the eighth time during the Mike Brey era. Last year, the Irish finished third in the Chicago Invitational.
– Notre Dame is 15-6 all-time under Brey in in-season tournaments. Go to pages 10-11 of this notes packet to see Notre Dame’s all-time results in in-season tournaments.
So Far So Good
– Notre Dame is off to a 4-0 start for the third straight season and for the sixth time during the Mike Brey era. Notre Dame’s best start under Brey was 7-0 in 2001-02.
– Notre Dame’s 369 points (92.2 ppg) are the most for the Irish through the first four games of a season since the 2001-02 campaign (372).
Abro On Attack
– With his game-high 26 points in a 97-72 win over Maine on Monday, senior forward Tim Abromaitis now has reached double digits in all four games this season and he has 32 career games in double figures. It was his 10th career 20-plus point effort. It marked the third time during his career that he’s recorded back-to-back 20-point outings. Abromaitis had 21 points versus Chicago State (Nov. 17).
– The Fighting Irish shot a season best 57.7% (30-52) from the field in Monday’s 97-72 victory over Maine
– Against Maine, Notre Dame shot 92.6% from the free throw line (25-27). Prior to that performance, the last time the Irish shot above 90% from the charity stripe was on Jan. 30, 2010 vs. Rutgers (9-10). The 25 made free throws were a season-high total.
– 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).
Tyrone Takes Control
– With his 13 points and 11 rebounds against Maine on Monday, senior forward Tyrone Nash registered his second straight double-double and the third double-double of his career. Nash was 11-12 from the free throw line against the Black Bears. He is 29-35 (.829) from the charity stripe this season. He entered this season as a 56.7% career free throw shooter (110-194).
– On Nov. 14, Nash tied a single-game career-high total with 16 points against Liberty. He made a single-game career-best 12 free throws, on a career-high 15 attempts, against the Flames.
– Nash is third on the team with 14 assists (3.5 apg) this season.
Double-Double Times Three
– Tim Abromaitis, Tyrone Nash and Carleton Scott all notched a double-double in the win over Chicago State on Nov. 17. It marked the first time three Irish players all recorded a double-double in the same game since Jan. 23, 2010 versus DePaul when Luke Harangody Ben Hansbrough and Nash accomplished the feat.
– For Abromaitis, it was his second career double-double as he tallied 21 points and a career-high tying 10 rebounds. He also had a career-high seven assists in the contest.
– Nash had 11 points and 10 rebounds against Chicago State to go along with a career-high seven assists.
– It was Scott’s fourth career double-double with 17 points and 11 boards. The 17 points tied a career-high total. Scott had a double-double in three of the final six contests last season.
Novembers To Remember
– Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey never has lost a home game in November during his 10-plus seasons with the Fighting Irish. Notre Dame is 34-0 all-time at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center in November under Brey.
– Notre Dame teams traditionally have played well under Brey during the month of November. In his 11 seasons on the Irish bench, Brey’s teams have compiled a 45-7 (.865) record.
Hansbrough Staying Hot oSenior guard Ben Hansbrough has led the Fighting Irish in scoring in three of the first four games of the season. He is averaging a team-best 18.0 points per game and has a team-high 23 assists (5.8 apg). Hansbrough is 16-27 (.593) from three-point range this season.
– Against Chicago State on Nov. 17, Hansbrough hit a single-game career-high six three pointers en route to tallying 22 points. It was the second time this season that he has hit the 20-point plateau. He has scored 20-plus points nine times during his career, including five times while at Notre Dame.
– Hansbrough has reached double-digits 53 times in his career, including 27 times with the Irish. He has reached double digits in every game this season and in a team-best six straight games dating back to last season.
– 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).
Martin Makes An Impact
– Senior guard Scott Martin scored a season-high 15 points on Monday versus Maine. It was his highest point output since he netted 17 against Missouri State on Dec. 23, 2007, 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.
– Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough and Tyrone Nash all have played in the past 39 contests. Nash and Hansbrough both have started all 39 of those contests. Overall, Nash has played in a team-best 54 straight contests. The last game he did not play in was at Cincinnati on Feb. 4, 2009.
Topping The Century Mark
– In the 102-62 victory over Chicago State on Nov. 17, Notre Dame reached the 100-point mark for the first time since a 101-69 win over Bucknell last season (Dec. 22, 2009). It was the 13th time a Fighting Irish team has scored 100-plus points during the Mike Brey era.
– It was the first victory of at least 40 points for the Irish since a 108-62 win over Northern Illinois on Dec. 8, 2007.
Hitting The Glass
– The Fighting Irish have out-rebounded their opponents 183-112 this season, including a 62-35 edge on the offensive glass. On average, Notre Dame is hauling down 17.8 more rebounds per game than its foes. The Irish held a 36-21 rebounding advantage over Maine on Monday.
A Passing Grade
– Notre Dame has registered 92 assists on its 120 made field goals this season (.767). As a team, the Irish boast a 2.24 assist-to-turnover ratio.
Draining From Deep
– The Irish have drained 10 or more three pointers in each of the past three games. Notre Dame went 10-28 from behind the arc against Liberty (Nov. 14) and followed that up with 12 treys, on 31 attempts, against Chicago State (Nov. 17). Notre Dame also hit 12 three-pointers, on 18 attempts, versus Maine on Monday.
– Notre Dame went 8-11 from three-point range in the first half against Maine on Monday. The eight made treys matched a season-high total for a half for the Irish. Notre Dame made eight three-pointers in the second half versus Chicago State.
– Sophomore forward Jack Cooley scored a career-high 13 points on 6-7 shooting from the field against Maine on Monday. 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. Cooley is 13-16 (.813) from the field this season.
Impressive Opening Debut
– With its 98-61 win over Georgia Southern, Notre Dame now is 88-18 (.830) in season openers and 37-6 (.860) all-time in openers at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
– Irish teams now are 11-0 all-time in season openers under head coach Mike Brey.
– The 98 points put up by the Irish were the highest point total in a season opener since a 99-53 victory over New Hampshire to start the 2001-02 season.
– The 37-point margin of victory was the largest in a season opener since a 43-point win (92-49) against IPFW to start the 2006-07 campaign.
– The 62 points scored by the Irish in the first half en route to a 62-23 halftime lead matched the most ever by Notre Dame team under head coach Mike Brey. Previously, Notre Dame had 62 points in the first half against Loyola-Chicago on Nov. 22, 2000.
– Georgia Southern’s five first-half field goals tied for the fewest by an opponent in the Mike Brey era.
– Notre Dame will open up the season by playing its first four games at home and will play eight of its 12 non-league opponents at home before opening up BIG EAST play against Georgetown on Wednesday, Dec. 29.
– Notre Dame’s first games away from Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center will be at the Old Spice Classic at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla., Nov. 25-28.
– Notre Dame also travels to Louisville, Ky., on Wednesday, Dec. 8 for a matchup against Kentucky in the SEC/BIG EAST Invitational. The game, which will be played at Freedom Hall, is part of a doubleheader that evening (the other game features Seton Hall and Arkansas). The Wildcats head into the 2010-11 campaign ranked 11th in the Associated Press and 10th in the ESPN/USA Today preseason rankings.
– Notre Dame’s marquee matchup at home will be against Gonzaga on Saturday, Dec. 11. The first-ever matchup between the two schools is part of a two-game series. The Irish will head to Spokane during the 2011-12 campaign. The Zags are ranked 12th in both preseason polls.
Home Court Advantage
– Notre Dame has won 73 of its last 79 (.924) home games and is 31-5 (.861) in its last 36 BIG EAST regular-season home contests.
Tom Knight Gets Into The Act
– After sitting out all of last season, Tom Knight scored the first points of his career in the season opener against Georgia Southern as he finished with seven points and four rebounds in nine minutes of action.
No Opening Game Jitters For These Rookies
– Freshmen Eric Atkins and Alex Dragicevich showed little signs of opening night jitters in their collegiate debuts against Georgia Southern. Atkins played 22 minutes and scored nine points, grabbed three rebounds and dished off three assists. He made all four of field goal attempts and turned the ball over just twice. Dragicevich played 10 minutes and finished with nine points and grabbed three rebounds.
– Against Chicago State on Nov. 17, Atkins became the first Irish freshman to start a game since Luke Harangody and Tory Jackson started against Winthrop in the first round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament.
– 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.
– Atkins is averaging 8.5 points per game and he is second on the team with 17 assists (4.3 apg). He is averaging 24.5 minutes per game and boasts a 4.25 assist-to-turnover ratio.
378 And Counting
– Heading into the Georgia contest, Notre Dame has made at least one three-pointer in 378 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.
– Notre Dame will face three America East Conference schools during the 2010-11 campaign – Maine (Nov. 22), Stony Brook (Dec. 19) and UMBC (Dec. 22). Irish teams are 12-0 all-time versus schools from the America East, including the 97-72 win over Maine on Nov. 22. The Irish also will meet two SEC foes during the season when they play Georgia in the Old Spice Classic on Nov. 25 and Kentucky in the SEC/BIG EAST Invitational on Dec. 8.
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 98-68 (.590) record in BIG EAST regular-season games and a 6-10 mark in tournament play for an overall record of 104-78 (.571) 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 48-29 (.623) over the last 77 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 team 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 Set To Meet Kentucky In DIRECTV SEC/BIG EAST Invitational
– Notre Dame is scheduled to make its first-ever appearance in the DIRECTV SEC/BIG EAST Invitational in 2010 as the Irish are scheduled to meet Kentucky at Freedom Hall in Louisville, Ky., on Wednesday, Dec. 8 in a game that will be televised on ESPN. The contest is part of a doubleheader that evening (Seton Hall will face Arkansas in the other game).
– Notre Dame and Kentucky have met at Freedom Hall on 32 occasions with the first contest played in January 1937. The Wildcats own a 32-9 advantage in the games the two schools have played at Freedom Hall. The last time the Notre Dame and Kentucky faced each other at Freedom Hall was on Jan. 31, 1988 as the Wildcats earned a 78-69 victory.
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 will be when head coach Mike Brey’s squad travels to the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wis., to take on Marquette at 7:00 p.m. (ET) on Jan. 10 in a game that will be shown on ESPN2. Notre Dame’s matchup at Pittsburgh on Jan. 24 at 7:00 p.m. (ET) at the Petersen Events Center will be shown on ESPN. 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 Young
– 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 1678-920 record for a .646 winning percentage. In 15 seasons as a member of the BIG EAST, the Irish own a 133-121 (.523) record all-time in conference regular-season play.
– Seniors Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough, Tyrone Nash along with junior Carleton Scott will serve as captains during the 2010-11 season. All four are captains for the first time in their careers.
– Mike Brey is in his 11th season along the Irish sidelines and 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 the BIG EAST with 100 victories (104-78 overall that includes regular-season and tournament contests). He is the sixth coach in BIG EAST history to record 100 conference wins.
– 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 professional 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 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 marks 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 polls 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 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 University of Cincinnati, Indiana University, University of Kansas, University of Louisville, University of Michigan, University of Nebraska, North Carolina State University, University of Tennessee, UCLA and University of 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.