Steve Vasturia (32) is one of Notre Dame's three returning starters from the 2014-15 campaign

Irish Relish Opportunity in Year Three as ACC Member

Sept. 2, 2015

2015-16 Schedule: PDF

NOTRE DAME, Ind. — The University of Notre Dame men’s basketball team knows the road to defending its 2015 Atlantic Coast Conference championship will not come easy. In year two as an ACC member, the Fighting Irish swept through Miami, eventual NCAA national champion Duke and North Carolina on Tobacco Road en route to capturing the ACC tournament championship in Greensboro, North Carolina last March.

The 2015-16 edition of Notre Dame men’s basketball will face a challenging slate of games, which includes as many as 17 nationally televised broadcasts on CBS Sports, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU throughout the regular season. Visits by North Carolina, Louisville, North Carolina State and Pittsburgh highlight a nine-game conference home schedule.

“We’ve put together another tough schedule that is really going to test us this season,” head coach Mike Brey says. “I like the challenges it presents for us throughout the season. The ACC is the best conference in the country and our league games from January through March really prepare us for the postseason. We’ll navigate some formidable stretches during the winter, but ultimately, those contests are going to make us a better come March.”

Since the 2006-07 campaign, the Irish own the sixth-best home winning percentage among all Division I schools. Notre Dame holds a 146-17 mark (.896) during the last eight campaigns. In 2014-15, the Irish finished with a 17-2 record at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.

All 135 regular-season ACC games and each of the 14 ACC tournament contests will be broadcast on an ESPN Network, ACC Network, CBS Sports, CBS Sports Network or the league’s regional cable networks.

For the fourth consecutive year, Notre Dame faces partners Boston College and Georgia Tech twice during the season. The other pair of repeat opponents for the Irish will be Miami and Wake Forest. The Irish finished with a 7-1 record a year ago versus the four teams they played both home and away.

Brey, who returns for his 16th season along the Irish sidelines, will have the luxury of three returning starters – senior forward Zach Auguste and junior guards Demetrius Jackson and Steve Vasturia – from last year’s squad that registered a 32-6 record (the second 30-win season in school history) and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship for the first time since 1979.

Notre Dame opens the ’15-’16 campaign with its longest homestand of the season as the Irish face St. Francis (Pa.) on Friday, Nov. 13 in the season opener, followed by a matchup with Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Tuesday, Nov. 17. The contest with the Panthers will mark the second meeting between the two schools. The first and only time the two schools met took place in the first found of the 2003 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship with the Irish earning a 70-69 victory in Indianapolis. Notre Dame will conclude the three-game home stretch versus UMass-Lowell with the first-ever meeting between the programs scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 21.

Notre Dame then heads to Orlando, Florida for the 2015 Advocare Invitational. The 10th annual event will take place Nov. 26-29 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Five of the eight teams featured – the Irish, Wichita State, Xavier, Dayton and Iowa – took part in the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship. This will be the second time Notre Dame has played in this event, formally known as the Orlando Classic. The Fighting Irish captured the title in 2010 with a victory over Wisconsin.

Notre Dame and Wichita State are on opposite sides of the bracket, which could set pair of up for a matchup in the championship game. The Irish defeated the Shockers 81-70 in the Sweet 16 of the 2015 Midwest Regional.

Notre Dame will open the tournament on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, Nov. 26) at 6:30 p.m. (ET) against Monmouth on ESPNU. Notre Dame’s second-round opponent will be either Iowa or Dayton on Friday, Nov. 27 and will air on either ESPN2 or ESPN3. The championship game is slated for Sunday, Nov. 29 at 4:30 p.m. (ET). Alabama and USC round out the field of eight teams.

The Irish and Illinois will play for the first time in 12 years when the teams meet in Champaign, Illinois on Wednesday, Dec. 2 at the State Farm Center in the 17th annual Big Ten/ACC Challenge. The schools will square off for the 40th meeting and first since the second round of the 2003 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship in Indianapolis – a 68-60 Irish victory that earned Brey his first-ever Sweet 16 appearance at Notre Dame. The contest tips off at 9:15 (ET) on ESPN2.

Matchups with Stony Brook on ESPNU (Dec. 8) and against Loyola Chicago (Dec. 13) are two of four home games at Purcell Pavilion during the month of December. Notre Dame travels to Indianapolis for the fifth-annual Crossroads Classic on Saturday, Dec. 19 at 2:00 p.m. (ET) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The Irish, who have a 3-1 record since the inception of the event, will play Indiana for the third time. The contest will be broadcast on ESPN2.

The final two home games in the month of December will be against Youngstown State (Dec. 21) and Liberty (Dec. 29).

Notre Dame plays its first two ACC regular-season contests on the road against Virginia (Jan. 2) on ESPN2 and Boston College (Jan. 7) before facing Pittsburgh on Saturday, Jan. 9 in its ACC home opener. The first of two regular-season matchups against Georgia Tech will take place at Purcell Pavilion on Wednesday, Jan. 13 at 9 p.m.

The only regular-season matchup between Notre Dame and Duke will take place at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Saturday, Jan. 16 at 2 p.m. The schools split a pair of regular-season matchups last season, but Notre Dame has been victorious in three of the last four meetings, including the 74-64 victory in the semifinals of the 2015 ACC championship. The game will be broadcast on either ESPN or ESPN2.

Following consecutive home games against Virginia Tech (Jan. 20) and Boston College (Jan. 23), Notre Dame travels to Syracuse for a 7 p.m. matchup on either ESPN or ESPN2 against the Orange on Thursday, Jan. 28. The Irish play host to Wake Forest on Sunday, Jan. 31 to close out the month of January.

A matchup at Miami on Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. on ESPN2 tips off seven games during the month of February for the Irish.

North Carolina travels to Purcell Pavilion on Saturday, Feb. 6 to face Notre Dame in a rematch of last year’s ACC title game. The contest will be broadcast on either ESPN or ESPN2. The game time has yet to be determined.

A matchup on ESPN at 9 p.m. with Clemson at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, South Carolina on Wednesday, Feb. 8 begins a stretch for Notre Dame, which includes will see the Irish play four road games over a five-game stretch.

The only other home game during the month of February is scheduled against Louisville on Saturday, Feb. 13 and broadcast on either ESPN or ESPN2.

Notre Dame will play its final road games of the season in a three-game stretch versus Georgia Tech (Feb. 20), Wake Forest (Feb. 24) and Florida State (Feb. 27). The Irish conclude the regular season at home versus Miami and North Carolina State. The matchup with the Hurricanes will tip Wednesday, March 2 at 7 pm on ESPN, while the Wolfpack will travel to Purcell Pavilion Saturday, March 5 for a noon tip on CBS.

The 63rd annual ACC Championship is set to run from Tuesday, March 8 through Saturday, March 12 at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. All 14 matchups of the tournament will be televised nationally on an ESPN network and the ACC Network, including the prime time (9 p.m.) championship game on Saturday evening.

Season tickets are available online at or by calling 574-631-7356.

— Bernadette Cafarelli, Assistant Athletics Director (Media Relations)