Nov. 30, 2013
Notre Dame (4-1)
Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013
1 p.m. (ET)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center
Notre Dame, Ind.
Mike Couzens (play-by-play)
Kevin Lehman (analyst)
Broadcast on WatchND.tv (free)
Sirius/XM 91 (College Sports Nation)
Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
Jordan Cornette (analyst)
FIGHTING IRISH BACK IN ACTION SUNDAY AGAINST THE BIG RED
- Notre Dame (4-1) returns to the Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center court Sunday against Cornell (0-8). Tip-off is slated for 1 p.m. (ET). The Irish have not played since topping Army 93-60 last Sunday. The Big Red are coming off an 83-70 setback at Western Michigan on Friday.
- Sunday’s game will be broadcast on ESPN3 with Mike Couzens (play-by-play) and Kevin Lehman (analyst) calling the action.
- A free audio broadcast will be available on WatchND.tv. Jack Nolan will handle play-by-play duties, while former Irish standout Jordan Cornette will serve as the analyst. 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 5 of this notes packet. The broadcast also is available on Sirius/XM channel 91 (College Sports Nation).
THE SERIES WITH CORNELL
- Notre Dame has won seven of the previous eight meetings with Cornell. The last encounter was a 78-48 Fighting Irish victory on Nov. 19, 2001, at the Joyce Center. The Big Red are 0-6 all-time at Notre Dame.
- Cornell’s lone win in the series was a 41-14 triumph on Feb. 10, 1914, in Ithaca, N.Y.
IRISH AGAINST THE IVY LEAGUE
- Notre Dame is 44-4, including 25-0 at home, all-time against teams from the Ivy League. The Irish have won 21 straight games against Ivy League opponents. Notre Dame’s last loss to an Ivy League foe was a 76-62 setback at Princeton on Jan. 3, 1977.
- The Fighting Irish are 6-0 against the Ivy League under Mike Brey.
- Cornell is the first Ivy League opponent for the Irish since an 84-57 win over Brown on Dec. 8, 2012.
GRANT NEARING 1,000-POINT MARK
- Senior guard Jerian Grant is closing in on the 1,000-point milestone.
- Grant needs 20 points to become the 55th player in program history to reach the mark. He has played in 74 career games (earning 72 starts) and has a 13.2 career scoring average.
- Grant is averaging a team-best 19.4 points per game this season. He is the only Notre Dame player to score in double-figures in all five games.
IRISH PRODUCE ALL-AROUND EFFORT AGAINST ARMY
- The 93 points in last Sunday’s 93-60 win over Army were the most for Notre Dame since the 104-101 five-overtime victory against Louisville on Feb. 9, 2013. They were the most points for the Irish in a 40-minute contest since a 93-74 win over Seton Hall on Jan. 5, 2013.
- The Fighting Irish had five double-figure scorers for the first time this season (Jerian Grant 19, Garrick Sherman 19, Zach Auguste 14, Eric Atkins 13, Demetrius Jackson 11).
- Notre Dame shot a season-best 56.5% (35-62) from the floor.
- The Irish had a season-best eight blocked shots against the Black Knights. The Fighting Irish also had a season-high 14 steals and they dished out a season-best 26 assists on their 35 made field goals.
- Last Sunday, Notre Dame outscored Army 60-35 in the second half en route to the 93-60 victory. The 60 points put up in the second half were the most in any half for the Irish since a 62-point first-half effort against Georgia Southern on Nov. 12, 2010. They were the most second-half points for the Fighting Irish since they went for 64 against Cincinnati on Jan. 15, 2008.
- The Irish shot 75% (24-32) from the floor in the second half against Army. That matched the highest percentage in any half for Notre Dame under head coach Mike Brey. The Irish also shot 75% (18-24) in the first half against West Virginia on Jan. 9, 2010, and in the second half (18-24) versus Niagara on Dec. 21, 2012.
- Notre Dame’s 19 second-half assists (on 24 made field goals) versus the Black Knights tied the most in a half for an Irish team under the direction of Brey. The Fighting Irish also dished out 19 assists in the first half of a 99-71 win over Canisius on Dec. 19, 2000.
DRAINING FROM DEEP
- Eric Atkins (126), Jerian Grant (120) and Pat Connaughton (111) rank 13th, 14th and 15th, respectively, in Notre Dame history in three-point field goals made.
- Connaughton is 12-of-22 (.545) from three-point range this season, while Grant is 11-of-24 (.458) and Atkins is 9-of-24 (.375).
Jerian Grant NAMED TO WOODEN AWARD AND NAISMITH WATCH LISTS
- Senior guard Jerian Grant was one of 50 players named to both the John R. Wooden Award and Naismith Award Preseason Watch lists.
- Grant has a team-best 19.4 points-per-game average this season. He scored a career-high 26 points against Miami (Ohio) in the season opener.
- He is the only Irish player who has scored in double figures in all five games this season.
- Grant has topped the 20-point mark twice this season.
- He also leads the Irish in assists (29) and steals (12). Grants is 11-of-24 (.458) from three-point range and 22-of-25 (.880) from the free throw line this season.
ATKINS AND CONNAUGHTON TO CAPTAIN THE IRISH
- Senior point guard Eric Atkins and junior guard/forward Pat Connaughton have been elected team captains for the 2013-14 campaign.
- For Atkins, his selection proves to be historic, as he becomes the first three-time captain in the 109-history of the program, while Connaughton is in his first season in the captaincy role.
- The backcourt trio of seniors Eric Atkins and Jerian Grant along with junior Pat Connaughton has logged significant playing time together over the past two-plus seasons. Notre Dame’s four returning starters from 2012-13 (including senior forward Tom Knight) have started a combined 231 contests with 208 of those starts coming from the Atkins-Grant-Connaughton combination.
PLAYING WELL IN PURCELL
- The Fighting Irish are 121-10 in their last 131 games played at home. That .924 home winning percentage over the course of the last eight seasons ranks fourth nationally.
- Notre Dame is 56-4 (.933) in its last 60 home games.
FIGHTING IRISH FACTS
- Since the beginning of the 2010-11 season, Notre Dame is 34-1 when shooting 50% or above from the field, 58-5 when outrebounding its opponent and 61-5 when leading at halftime.
- The Fighting Irish went 5-4 against ranked teams last season. Over the last four-plus seasons, Notre Dame is 22-16 (.579) against teams ranked in the Associated Press top-25 poll, including a 12-2 mark at home.
- Notre Dame is 4-3 in its last seven showdowns with a team ranked in the top 10 of the Associated Press poll. The Irish are 17-26 against teams ranked in the top 10 of the AP poll under head coach Mike Brey.
NOTRE DAME TO TRAVEL TO IOWA FOR ACC/BIG TEN CHALLENGE
- Notre Dame will face Iowa Tuesday in the 15th annual Big Ten/ACC Challenge presented by DICK’s Sporting Goods. The game is slated for 9:15 p.m. (ET) in Iowa City, Iowa and it will be televised by ESPN2.
- The contest at Carver-Hawkeye Arena is part of a 12-game series involving teams from the two conferences over two nights (Dec. 3-4). ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will combine to televise all 12 games of the two-day event matching top college basketball programs playing for conference supremacy and the Commissioners Cup.
IRISH ENTER THE ACC
- Following 18 seasons in the BIG EAST Conference, Notre Dame is entering its first season as a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Notre Dame will face each of the other 14 ACC member schools at least once during this season’s 18-game conference schedule. Along with home-and-away dates with its “partner schools” Boston College and Georgia Tech, Notre Dame will meet both North Carolina and Virginia twice during the season. The Fighting Irish also will play host to Clemson, Duke, North Carolina State, Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech. Notre Dame’s other road opponents are Florida State, Maryland, Miami, Syracuse and Wake Forest.
- The 2014 ACC men’s basketball tournament is scheduled for March 12-16 at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C.
- Notre Dame was picked to finish fifth in its inaugural season of Atlantic Coast Conference play according to a vote of media in attendance at the league’s annual “Operation Basketball.” Duke was picked to win the ACC title.
- Senior guard Jerian Grant was named to the five-man Preseason All-ACC Team.
ATKINS JOINS 1,000-POINT CLUB
- With his fifth point in the Indiana State game on Nov. 17, senior point guard Eric Atkins notched his 1,000th career point and became Notre Dame’s 54th member of the 1,000-point club (first since Jack Cooley last season).
- Atkins has scored in double-figures in each of the last three games and four times overall this season.
- He currently is averaging a career-high 13.0 points per game and owns an overall 9.8 scoring average in 106 career outings.
ATKINS ON BOB COUSY AWARD WATCH LIST
- Senior Eric Atkins was named to the watch list for the 2014 Bob Cousy Collegiate Point Guard of the Year Award. Atkins is averaging 13.0 points and 5.0 assists per game this season. He also boasts a 5.0 assist-to-turnover ratio.
- Atkins has 1,042 career points and 458 assists.
- The annual honor, announced by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and is named for Hall of Famer and former Boston Celtic point guard Bob Cousy, recognizes the top point guards in men’s basketball. A committee of well-respected media members and influential people within collegiate basketball from around the country comprise the committee. This year’s watch list will be narrowed down to a final 20 in early February, then a final five in early March.
ASSISTING THE IRISH
- Senior point guard Eric Atkins’ career assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.37 ranks first among all active Division I players. Ohio State’s Aaron Craft is second on the list (2.26). Atkins has 458 career assists and just 193 turnovers. The assist total currently ranks 10th nationally.
- This season, Atkins has 25 assists and just five turnovers for a 5.0 assist-to-turnover, which is tied for the 13th-best mark in the country.
- Fellow Notre Dame senior guard Jerian Grant currently ranks 27th in career assists (392). Grant has a team-best 29 assists this season to go along with just seven turnovers for a 4.14 assist-to-turnover ratio, which tied for 33rd nationally.
- As a team, Notre Dame has the country’s 12th-best assist-to-turnover ratio (1.75) this season.
NOTRE DAME ADDS TWO FRONTLINE PLAYERS FOR 2014-15 CAMPAIGN
- Irish head coach Mike Brey recently announced the signing of two frontcourt players to his 2014-15 roster. Bonzie Colson, Jr., a 6-6, 200-pound forward out of New Bedford, Mass., and Martin Geben, a 6-9, 230-pound forward from Vilnius, Lithuania, have signed National Letters of Intent during the early signing period. The duo will enroll at Notre Dame in the fall of 2014.
DIGGER PHELPS TO BE INDUCTED INTO NOTRE DAME BASKETBALL RING OF HONOR
- Forty years to the day that one of the greatest moments in Notre Dame’s illustrious athletics history occurred, the man who engineered the stunning 71-70 victory over top-ranked UCLA on Jan. 19, 1974, that ended the Bruins 88-game win streak will be inducted into the Notre Dame Basketball Ring of Honor. Richard “Digger” Phelps will become the sixth inductee into the Ring of Honor at halftime of the Fighting Irish men’s basketball game against Virginia Tech on Jan. 19, 2014.
- Phelps, who led Notre Dame to a sterling 393-197 record (.666) over his 20 seasons (1971-91) on the Irish hardwood, will become the first coach inducted into the Ring of Honor. The all-time winningest men’s basketball coach at Notre Dame, he will join Austin Carr, Adrian Dantley, Skylar Diggins, Luke Harangody and Ruth Riley. Diggins was inducted at the Notre Dame women’s basketball game against Valparaiso on Nov. 16.
FIGHTING IRISH RETURN TO CROSSROADS CLASSIC
- Notre Dame will battle Big Ten rival Indiana in the third annual Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind. The game between the Irish and the Hoosiers will be the first game of a doubleheader on Saturday, Dec. 14. Butler and Purdue will square off in the second contest.
IRISH TO PLAY IN GOTHAM CLASSIC
- Notre Dame will play host to three games at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center as part of the second annual Gotham Classic before heading to New York City to take on Ohio State in the showcase game at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, Dec. 21. That contest will be televised by ESPN2.
- The Irish will host three games in a five-day span. Notre Dame will face Delaware on Dec. 7, Bryant on Dec. 9 and North Dakota State on Dec. 11.
- The format of the Gotham Classic features 10 games with all five teams playing each other. In addition to the games at Notre Dame, the slate of contests also includes: North Dakota State at Bryant (Dec. 7), Bryant at Ohio Sate (Dec. 11), North Dakota at Ohio State (Dec. 14), Delaware at North Dakota State (Dec. 16) and Delaware at Ohio State (Dec. 18).
- Bryant and Delaware will meet at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 21 in the first game of the Saturday doubleheader.
NOTRE DAME STUDENT-ATHLETES AGAIN RANK #1 IN NCAA GRS
- For the eighth time in nine years, the University of Notre Dame ranks number one on a percentage basis in terms of number of Graduation Success Rate (GSR) 100 scores, among all NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision schools.
- Twenty of 22 athletics programs at Notre Dame compiled graduation rates of 100 percent, including the men’s basketball team, according to the ninth year of GSR measurements developed by the NCAA. It’s the first time Notre Dame’s programs have combined for 20 perfect scores-after four previous years with 19.
- None of the Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly NCAA Division I-A) programs in the country had a higher percentage of 100 GSR scores than did Notre Dame with its .909 number (20 of 22).
- In addition, Notre Dame ranked second among all FBS institutions with nine perfect scores among 22 sports (.409) in the federal graduation rate analysis.
BREY NO STRANGER TO THE ACC
- Perhaps no person is better prepared to navigate the Irish basketball program into its new basketball conference home than head coach Mike Brey. A Rockville, Md., native, he grew up a Maryland Terrapin basketball fan and his first coaching job in the collegiate ranks was as an assistant coach at Duke for eight seasons.
- Beginning in 1987-88, he helped Blue Devil head coach Mike Krzyzewski take his teams to six NCAA Final Fours and four national title games while winning back-to-back national titles in 1991 and 1992. The Blue Devils posted a sterling 216-65 record for a 76.8 winning percentage during his tenure at the school. Brey recruited and worked daily with four of the greatest players in that program’s history — Danny Ferry, Christian Laettner, Bobby Hurley and Grant Hill.
- Notre Dame has earned appearances in the postseason in each of the last 14 seasons, which marks the longest stretch in school history. The Irish have been to the NCAA Championship on nine 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 nine times, including a current stretch of four straight trips, and NIT four times.
NOTRE DAME LOOKS TO NOTCH ANOTHER 20-WIN CAMPAIGN
- The Irish have recorded seven straight 20-win seasons. It’s the first time in program history that Notre Dame has compiled seven consecutive 20-win campaigns. The Fighting Irish have reached the 20-win plateau 10 times in 13 seasons under head coach Mike Brey.
- Last season’s 25 wins were tied for the second-most of the Brey era. The most wins for the Irish under Brey are 27 (27-7) in 2010-11.
- Junior guard/forward Pat Connaughton also is a standout pitcher on the Fighting Irish baseball team. He has appeared in 22 games, including 20 starts, and boasts an 8-6 career record with a 2.43 earned-run average (ERA). He has logged 92.2 innings and has notched 69 strikeouts. As a sophomore, Connaughton went 4-2 and posted a 1.71 ERA.
- He recently was named the No. 46 prospect among 2014 draft-eligible players by Perfect Game in the publication’s post-fall college top-50 list. The publication ranked Connaughton as the No. 22 right-handed pitcher.
- Connaughton was selected by the San Diego Padres in the 50th round of the 2011 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft.
BREY TO BE INDUCTED INTO GEORGE WASHINGTON ATHLETICS HALL OF FAME
- In January, Irish head coach Mike Brey will be inducted into the George Washington University Athletics Hall of Fame. Brey will be honored by his alma mater on the eve of Notre Dame’s matchup with the Maryland on Tuesday, Jan. 14, during a special halftime ceremony at the Colonials’ men’s basketball game against VCU at the Charles E. Smith Center.
- Brey played one season (1981-82) at George Washington after transferring from Northwestern State. During his one season on the Colonials’ roster, he averaged 5.0 points and 4.8 assists while serving as team captain. He led George Washington in assists that season with 116 in 24 games and earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education.
- Brey is among seven former student-athletes comprising the 2014 George Washington Athletics Hall of Fame class. In addition to Brey, the class includes Greg Condon (`03, Baseball), Kwame Evans (`96, Men’s Basketball), Cathy Joens (`04, Women’s Basketball), Elena Meyer (`07, Softball) and Kim Warner (`04, Women’s Soccer).