Ben Hansbrough

Irish Set To Host America East Foe Maine On Monday

Nov. 21, 2010

Click here to see detailed notes

Game 4 – Monday, November 22 – 7:30 p.m. (EST)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center (9,154)
Notre Dame, Ind.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Record: 3-0, 0-0
H: 3-0; A: 0-0; N: 0-0

Maine Black Bears
Record: 2-1, 0-0
H: 1-0; A: 1-1; N: 0-0

Notre Dame Vs. Maine

  • The Fighting Irish will conclude their season-opening four-game home stand when they play host to Maine at 7:30 p.m. (ET) on Monday at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
  • This will be the second meeting all-time between the Irish and Black Bears. Notre Dame topped Maine 79-55 during the 1981-82 campaign at the Joyce Center.
  • Maine is a member of the America East Conference. The Black Bears are one of three America East teams on Notre Dame’s 2010-11 slate. The Irish will also face America East foes Stony Brook (Dec. 19) and UMBC (Dec. 22) during their non-conference schedule.
  • The Irish are 11-0 against current teams from the America East Conference. Notre Dame’s last game versus an America East school was a 74-67 victory over Boston University during the 2008-09 campaign.
  • Maine brings a 2-1 record into Monday’s contest. The Black Bears are coming off a 95-44 win over Maine-Machias on Friday night.

Coaching Against His Old Conference

  • Playing an America East foe will be nothing new for Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey. Brey spent five seasons at Delaware (1995-2000) while the Blue Hens were part of the America East Conference.
  • Brey posted a 60-30 league record at Delaware. He and the Blue Hens captured the conference title in 1998 and 1999. Brey guided Delaware to postseason play during his final three seasons at the school (2 NCAA, 1 NIT).
  • Brey went 6-6 against Maine during his time with the Blue Hens.

Maine Bench Has A Familiar Face

  • Maine assistant coach Chris Markwood is a familiar face to Irish fans. Markwood, a 2005 Maine graduate, started his career at Notre Dame before transferring to Maine in December of 2002.
  • Markwood played in 24 career outings with the Irish. His missed the 2000-01 season after undergoing knee surgery and played in 18 of 33 contests during the 2001-02 campaign.

So Far So Good

  • Notre Dame is off to a 3-0 start for the third straight season and for the seventh time during the Mike Brey era.
  • The Fighting Irish opened the season with a 98-61 victory over Georgia Southern and followed that up with a 72-51 triumph of Liberty. Notre Dame made it three wins in a row by taking down Chicago State 102-62 on Wednesday.

Double-Double Times Three

  • Tim Abromaitis, Tyrone Nash and Carleton Scott all notched a double-double in the win over Chicago State on Wednesday. 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. His first career double-double came last season versus Rutgers (17 pts., 10 rebs.).
  • It also was the second career double-double for Nash, who had 11 points and 10 rebounds to go along with a career-high seven assists.
  • Scott posted his 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.

Topping The Century Mark

  • In the 102-62 victory over Chicago State on Wednesday, 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.

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 33-0 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 44-7 (.863) record.

Hansbrough Staying Hot

  • Senior guard Ben Hansbrough has led the Fighting Irish in scoring during all three games this season. He is averaging 20.3 points per game and has a team-best 14 assists. Hansbrough is 15-25 (.600) from three-point range this season.
  • Against Chicago State on Wednesday, 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 52 times in his career, including 26 times with the Irish.
  • Hansbrough posted 20 points in the season opener against Georgia Southern. 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).

Rookie On A Roll

  • On Wednesday versus Chicago State, Eric 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.
  • With his 12 points against Chicago State, Atkins became the first Irish freshman to reach double figures in consecutive games since Haranody did so during the 2006-07 campaign. Atkins deposited 10 points against Liberty on Nov. 14.
  • Atkins is averaging 10.3 points per game and he is second on the team with 12 assists. He is averaging 25.3 minutes per game and boasts a 3.0 assist-to-turnover ratio.

Nash Notches A Career Day

  • Senior forward Tyrone Nash tied a single-game career-high total with 16 points against Liberty on Nov. 14. He also netted 16 last season against St. John’s.
  • Nash made a single-game career-best 12 free throws, on a career-high 15 attempts, against the Flames. His previous high for makes from the charity stripe was seven on two occasions. Nash is 18-23 (.783) from the free throw line this season.


  • Tim Abromaitis, Ben Hansbrough and Tyrone Nash all have played in the past 38 contests. Nash and Hansbrough both have started all 38 of those contests. Overall, Nash has played in a team-best 53 straight contests. The last game he did not play in was at Cincinnati on Feb. 4, 2009.

Clamping Down

  • Notre Dame has held each of its first three opponents this season to under 36% shooting from the field. Irish foes are shooting just 34.5% from the field and 28.8% from three-point range.

Hitting The Glass

  • The Fighting Irish have out-rebounded their opponents 147-91 this season, including a 53-29 edge on the offensive glass. On average, Notre Dame is hauling down 18.7 more rebounds per game than its foes. The Irish held a 59-28 rebounding advantage over Chicago State on Wednesday.

A Passing Grade

  • Notre Dame has registered 66 assists on its 90 made field goals this season. As a team, the Irish boast a 2.13 assist-to-turnover ratio.

Draining From Deep

  • The Irish have drained 10 or more three pointers in each of the past two games. Notre Dame went 10-28 from behind the arc against Liberty and followed that up with a season-high 12 treys, on 31 attempts, against Chicago State.

Notre Dame Continues Streak In Season Openers

  • With its 98-61 win over Georgia Southern, Notre Dame is now 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.

Impressive Opening Debut

  • Notre Dame’s season-opening win against Georgia Southern produced several impressive statistics in the 98-61 victory.
  • 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.

Home Cooking

  • 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. The Irish open up play on Thanksgiving evening (Thursday, Nov. 25) versus Georgia and then will play either California or Temple in second-round action on Friday, Nov. 26. In the third game of the tournament on Sunday, Nov. 28, the Irish will play either Boston College, Texas A&M, Wisconsin or Manhattan.
  • 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 72 of its last 78 (.923) home games and is 31-5 (.861) in its last 36 BIG EAST regular-season home contests.

Jack Attack

  • The Georgia Southern game also brought the best out of Jack Cooley as reached double figures for the first time in his career with a career-high 11 points (4-5 from the field and 3-3 from the free-throw line) and six rebounds in 16 minutes.

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 Friday night 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.

377 And Counting

  • Heading into tonight’s game against Maine, Notre Dame has made at least one three-pointer in 377 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.

Conference Call

  • 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 11-0 all-time versus schools from the America East. 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.

Postseason Stretch

  • 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 1677-920 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.

The Captains

Elder Statesman

  • 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.

Click here to see detailed notes

Basketball Bloodlines

  • 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).

DeMatha Connection

  • 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 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.