Head coach Mike Brey begins his 10th season at Notre Dame on Saturday, as the Irish play host to North Florida at the new Purcell Pavilion (2 p.m. ET, UND.com webcast).

Irish Tip Off 2009-10 Season Saturday Against North Florida

Nov. 13, 2009

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Notre Dame (0-0) vs. North Florida (0-0)
Saturday, Nov. 14, 2009 • 2:00 p.m.
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center (9,149)
Notre Dame, Ind.

TV: None

Radio: Jack Nolan (play-by-play), LaPhonso Ellis (color analyst)
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Real-Time Stats: Live in-game statistics are available for all home games via the Notre Dame athletic website (www.und.com).

Notre Dame vs. North Florida

  • Notre Dame opens up the 2009-10 campaign and its 105th season of basketball in program history against the Ospreys of North Florida. It marks a busy start for the Irish with four games in the first eight days of the season for Irish head coach Mike Brey and his squad.
  • Saturday’s contest is the second meeting ever between the Irish and Ospreys. The only matchup, won by Notre Dame 77-58, was played on Dec, 31, 2007.
  • A member of the Atlantic Sun Conference, Notre Dame owns a 6-0 record all-time against teams from that conference. Today’s contest marks the second consecutive year that the Irish have opened up the season against a team from the Atlantic Sun Conference. Last season, Notre Dame defeated USC Upstate in the season opener.
  • In its two exhibition contests, Notre Dame posted wins over Divison II and Great Lake Valley Conference foes Lewis (70-54) and Quincy (75-54).


  • Luke Harangody will be playing in his 100th career outing today, while fellow teammate Tory Jackson will be appearing in 101st contest. Jackson has never missed a game during his Irish career. Classsmate Jonathan Peoples has played in 95 career outings.
  • Harangody has made 83 consecutive starts in the games he has played. He missed the only two games of his career last season when he was diagnosed with pneumonia. Jackson has started 87 contests during his three-year career.

A New Era In Notre Dame Basketball — Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center

  • Notre Dame basketball gets a facelift in 2009-10 as the largest renovation in Joyce Center history signals the opening of Purcell Pavilion. The $26.3-million project, which began with groundbreaking ceremonies in September 2008, was made possible by lead gifts from Philip J. Purcell III, Vincent J. Naimoli and Mike Leep, Sr. The renovation encompasses construction of a new three-story structure at the south end of the arena that will include a new three-story lobby, the Notre Dame ticket operations (approximately 4,500 square feet) and a varsity shop to sell apparel and souvenirs (approximately 3,000 square feet), in addition to a new club seating and hospitality area. Replacement of the existing Joyce Center arena seating, including the installation of chair-back seating throughout the arena, took place during the summer of 2009 following Commencement Exercises in May. The entire project is scheduled for completion in January 2010.
  • The arena is Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center — and the new club/hospitality area (and two outdoor patios) will be named the Naimoli Family Sports Club Room. The new varsity shop will be named the Mike Leep Sr. Varsity Shop, while the three-story atrium is named after former Notre Dame athletic director Dick Rosenthal.

Irish Preview

  • Notre Dame’s two returning starters from last year’s squad — Luke Harangody and Tory Jackson — have played in a combined 200 contests and made a combined 170 starts during their careers. Jackson has played in every game to date, while Harangody has missed just two contests (both in 2008-09 due to pneumonia). Harangody has led the Irish in scoring and rebounding each of the last two seasons and became the first player in BIG EAST Conference history to lead the conference in both of these categories. Last season, he averaged 23.3 points and 11.8 rebounds in Notre Dame’s 36 games, while netting 25.2 points and 12.8 boards in 18 league contests. Jackson averaged 10.8 points (fourth on the team), 4.4 rebounds and was the team leader in assists (4.9) and steals (1.2).
  • Senior Ben Hansbrough, who sat out last year after transferring from Mississippi State, will be paired with Jackson in the backcourt. In two seasons at Mississippi State, he averaged 8.8 points and 2.9 assists.
  • Senior guard Jonathan Peoples will likely get the starting job on the wing, while junior forward Tyrone Nash will join Harangody in the frontcourt. Peoples played in 36 contests a year ago and earned two starts while averaging 3.2 points and 2.3 rebounds. Nash played in 34 games and earned one start while averaging 3.0 points and 3.6 rebounds.
  • With the graduation of nearly 47.0 percent of Notre Dame’s scoring from a year ago, several new faces will emerge this season as potential starters and top reserves. Junior forwards Tim Abromaitis and Carleton Scott are likely to play key roles for the Irish. Scott sat out his freshman season in 2007-08, and in his first season of action, played in 20 games and averaged 2.5 points and 1.2 boards. Abromaitis played as a freshman, but did not see action in his sophomore season.
  • Junior guard Scott Martin, who transferred to Notre Dame from Purdue in June 2008, was expected to be a starter in the lineup, but he went down with an ACL injury in early October that will keep out him for the season.
  • Freshmen forwards Mike Broghammer, Jack Cooley and Tom Knight, as well as guard Joey Brooks provide depth in the frontcourt and backcourt.

Class of 2010 Aims For History

  • The Irish senior class of Luke Harangody, Tory Jackson, Jonathan Peoples and Tim Andree enter its final season looking to become the all-time winningest class in career and BIG EAST Conference victories at Notre Dame. Heading into the 2009-10 campaign, the quartet has a 70-31record for a .693 winning percentage and is 33-19 (.635) overall in BIG EAST play. They will need 23 wins to surpass the 92 wins from the 1975-79 and 1977-81 classes. The most BIG EAST wins are 40 set by Irish teams from 2000-04 and 2004-08.

Harangody Tops Associated Preseason All-America Team

  • Luke Harangody was the leading vote-getter on the Associated Press Preseason All-America Team that was announced earlier this week. Harangody received 57 votes from the 65-member media panel. Joining him on the preseason AP All-America team was junior Cole Aldrich of Kansas (49 votes), senior Sherron Collins of Kansas (39 votes), junior Patrick Patterson of Kentucky (35 votes) and junior Kyle Singler of Duke (30 votes).
  • Harangody also was one of nine BIG EAST players named to the 50-person 2009-10 Naismith Trophy Preseason Watch List that was announced by the Atlanta Tipoff Club.
  • In August, Harangody was named to the John R. Wooden All-America Team Preseason Top 50 List. Among the 50 returnees, he is the only two-time member of that squad having earned a spot on the 10-member team in both 2008 and 2009.
  • Harangody also was named as one of 30 candidates in men’s basketball for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award.

Same Game, New Number

  • Irish fans will not see the familiar No. 2 worn by Tory Jackson in his first three seasons as he has switched jersey numbers and is wearing No. 3 in 2009-10.

Irish In Season Openers

  • Notre Dame owns an all-time record of 86-18 (.827) all-time in season openers and have won all nine openers under head coach Mike Brey. Since the opening of Purcell Pavilion (formerly the Joyce Center), Notre Dame teams are 35-6 (.854). The last time Notre Dame lost a season opener at home was against Miami of Ohio on November 13, 1998.

Notre Dame Rolls Under Brey in November

  • Notre Dame teams have traditionally played well under had coach Mike Brey during the month of November. During his eight seasons on the Irish bench, his teams have compiled a 35-6 (.853) record.

Busy Start To Season

  • Notre Dame faces a busy opening to the season with seven games in 14 days. The Irish open up on Sat., Nov. 14 and are set to play five home games in the span of eight days before traveling to Chicago, Ill., for the Chicago Invitational for two contests. Notre Dame plays seven games during the month of December all at Purcell Pavilion.

Irish Aim For Fourth Straight 20-Win Season

  • Notre Dame will begin the 2009-10 campaign looking for its fourth straight 20-win season. The Irish recorded a 24-8 record in 2006-07, finished 25-8 in 2008-09 and posted a 21-15 mark in 2008-09. Notre Dame last had three consecutive 20-win campaigns in head coach Mike Brey’s first three seasons from 2000-03. The last time Irish teams reached the 20-win mark in four straight campaigns was from 1983-89 when those Notre Dame squads under former head coach Digger Phelps had six consecutive 20-win seasons.

Non-Conference Home Win Streak

  • Notre Dame begins the season with a 37-game home win streak versus non-conference opponents at Purcell Pavilion. The Irish last lost to a non-conference opponent at home when they suffered a 71-57 setback to Michigan on Dec. 3, 2005.

The Captains

Harangody Tabbed as BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year

  • For the second straight year, Luke Harangody has named the 2009-10 Preseason BIG EAST player of the year by a vote of the league’s head coaches. Harangody was chosen for the honor prior to his junior season after earning the conference’s player-of-the-year accolade in 2008. Last season, he became the first player in league history to lead the conference in both scoring (25.2) and rebounding (12.8). Harangody is one of only four players in Notre Dame history with 1,800 career points and 900 rebounds, ranking eighth all-time with 1,823 points and standing fifth with 949 rebounds. In his three-year BIG EAST career, he has scored 1,031 points (19.9 ppg.) in 52 league contests. Only three other players in BIG EAST history — Ray Allen (Connecticut), Richard Hamilton (Connecticut) and Pat Garrity (Notre Dame) — scored more than 1,000 points in three seasons.

Elder Statesman

  • Mike Brey begins his 10th season along the 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 seventh all-time in the BIG EAST win 92 victories (92-69 overall that includes regular-season and tournament contests). He needs just six wins to move ahead of Steve Lappas, who coached at Villanova, on the career wins list and is eight wins shy of becoming just the sixth coach in BIG EAST history to record 100 conference wins.

Jackson Set to Become 50th 1,000-Point Scorer in Notre Dame History

  • Tory Jackson begins the season needing just 106 points to become the program’s 50th player to score 1,000 points. He owns a scoring average of 8.9 points and has played in all 101 games of his Irish career.

An Elite Club

  • With 1,823 points and 949 rebounds in 99 career outings, Luke Harangody is one of just four players in the 104-history of the Notre Dame basketball program to score 1,800 points and grab 800 rebounds. The others to reach this milestone have been:
  • Adrian Dantley (1973-76): 2,223 points, 843 rebounds
  • Troy Murphy (1998-01): 2,011 points, 924 rebounds
  • Tom Hawkins (1956-59): 1,820 points, 1,318 rebounds

Statistical Champions

  • Notre Dame finished first nationally in 2008-09 in two statistical categories — turnovers (9.5) and assist to turnovers (1.75).
  • In 2007-08, the Irish led the nation in assists with 18.4 per game.

105 Years Young

  • The 2009-10 campaign marks the 105th season of basketball at Notre Dame and the 15th season as a member of the BIG EAST Conference. Notre Dame teams have posted a 1651-908 record for a .645 winning percentage. In 14 seasons as a member of the BIG EAST, the Irish own a 123-113 (.521) record all-time in conference regular-season play.

BIG EAST Turnaround

  • During head coach Mike Brey’s tenure, Notre Dame has had only two losing seasons in BIG EAST play — 6-10 in 2005-06 and 8-10 in 2008-09. Since the ’05-’06 campaign when the Irish finished 6-10 after beginning the BIG EAST campaign with a 1-8 record. Since that 1-8 start, Notre Dame has gone 38-21 (.644) over the last 59 regular-season league games.

BIG EAST Formula For Success

  • Since his arrival at Notre Dame, Mike Brey has led the Irish to an 88-60 (.594) record in BIG EAST regular-season games and a 4-9 mark in tournament play for an overall record of 92-69 (.571) against league foes. In Brey’s first season, the Irish posted their first-ever winning record in BIG EAST play and won the league West Division title with an 11-5 mark. Prior to Brey’s arrival at Notre Dame, Irish teams had a 35-53 (.398) regular-season record from 1995-2000.

339 And Counting

  • Entering the 2009-10 campaign, Notre Dame has hit at least one three-pointer in 339 straight games, a mark that dates back to the 1998-99 campaign. 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 as Notre Dame finished 0-7 from beyond the arc. In 2008-09, the Irish set a single-season three-point with 319.

Now That’s Something To Talk About

  • Notre Dame has won 52 of its last 55 home games that included a school-record 45-game win streak from 2006-09. The Irish also tied a BIG EAST mark by winning 20 straight conference home games during that time period. Notre Dame became the first BIG EAST team in conference history to record back-to-back undefeated seasons at home after finishing 17-0 in ’06-’07 and 18-0 in ’08-’09.

Notre Dame has shot .500 or better in 20 of 55 games; opponents have shot .500 or better in 4 of 55 games. There have been 35 wins by 10-plus points; 19 wins by 20-plus points; 14 wins by 30-plus points; 5 wins by 40-plus points; and 1 win by 50-plus points.

In the Spotlight

  • Notre Dame will appear on national television 14 times during the 2009-10 campaign that includes two games on CBS (UCLA and Georgetown), seven contests on either ESPN or ESPN2 and five games on ESPNU. The Irish appeared on national television a school-record 23 times in 2008-09.

Irish Sign Three Guards In Early Signing Period

  • Irish head coach Mike Brey signed a trio of guards during the early signing period in November: Eric Atkins (Columbia, Md./Mount St. Joseph/6-1, 170); Alex Dragicevich (Northbrook, Ill./Glenbrook North/6-6, 210) and Jerian Grant (Bowie, Md./DeMatha/6-5, 180). Atkins averaged 23.4 points, 6.0 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 3.2 steals en route to earning Baltimore Catholic League player-of-the-year honors and first tam all-Baltimore Metor accolades. Dragicevich led his Glenbrook North squad to a 23-5 record in 2008-09 while averaging 20.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.5 assists and being selected as the Central Suburban League North Player of the Year. Grant will be one of three members from the current Notre Dame men’s basketball family who attended DeMatha, which also is the alma mater of Brey and assistant Rod Balanis. As a junior, he averaged 7.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 6.0 assists and led his team to a final 32-4 mark and the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament titles.

It’s Academic

  • When the Irish finished with a 3.168 grade point average following the 2009 spring semester, it marked the ninth time in 11 semesters that head coach Mike Brey’s squad had finished with a 3.00 grade index or higher.
  • Members of the 2008-09 Irish squad earned a 3.151 following the 2008 fall semester, and, for the academic year, produced a 3.165 GPA. With the completion of the `09 spring semester, Notre Dame players had a cumulative 3.105 grade point average, the highest ever. It also marked the 10th consecutive semester that the team has earned a cumulative GPA of above a 3.00.
  • Notre Dame won the BIG EAST Academic Sport Excellence Award for men’s basketball for the second time in as many years. The BIG EAST began recognizing the highest collective grade-point averages in each conference sport in 2008. The Irish men’s basketball team has won it each of the two years it has been presented and joined two other Notre Dame squads (men’s swimming and diving and women’s tennis) as recipients in 2009.
  • Seven players were named to the 2008-09 BIG EAST Academic All-Star Team, while 10 of the 14 members of the squad earned a grade point average of 3.00 or better in the spring semester.

— ND —