Sophomore point guard Eric Atkins has led the Irish in scoring a team-best seven times this season.

Irish To Conclude Non-Conference Play Against Sacred Heart

Dec. 18, 2011

Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Sacred Heart (6-6) vs. Notre Dame (7-5)
Dec. 19, 2011 o 7:30 p.m. (ET)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center (9,149)
Notre Dame, Ind.

Live Video Broadcast:
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Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
LaPhonso Ellis (analyst)
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  • Notre Dame (7-5) will wrap up its non-conference slate on Monday against Sacred Heart (6-6) inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. (ET).
  • A free live video broadcast of Monday’s game will be available on The Fighting Irish Digital Media radio crew of Jack Nolan (play-by-play) and LaPhonso Ellis (analyst) will call the action (radio affiliate listings on Pg. 5).
  • This will be the second meeting all-time between the Fighting Irish and Pioneers. Notre Dame captured a 104-58 home victory over Sacred Heart on Nov. 18, 2000. That was head coach Mike Brey’s first game at Notre Dame.
  • Sacred Heart is the second Northeast Conference (NEC) opponent Notre Dame has faced this season. The Irish topped NEC foe Bryant, 84-59, on Nov. 27. Notre Dame is 25-0 all-time against teams currently in the NEC.
  • The Fighting Irish are 61-15 (.803) in December under head coach Mike Brey.


  • Notre Dame’s 65-47 win over Dartmouth on Dec. 10 upped its home win streak to 26 games. That is the second longest Irish win streak inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center in program history. The Fighting Irish won 45 straight at the Joyce Center from March 4, 2006-Jan. 10, 2009.



  • Notre Dame used its eighth different starting lineup of the season (12 games) on Saturday against Indiana. No Notre Dame player has started every game this season (game-by-game starting lineups listed on page 7).
  • The quintet of Scott Martin (Sr./G), Joey Brooks (Jr./G), Jack Cooley (Jr./F), Eric Atkins (So./G) and Jerian Grant (So./G) has started three games, which makes it the most-used starting lineup for the Irish this season. The Fighting Irish are 2-1 with that starting lineup.
  • Six different Irish players – Joey Brooks (Jr./G), Jack Cooley (Jr./F), Tom Knight (Jr./F), Jerian Grant (So./G), Alex Dragicevich (So./G) and Pat Connaughton (Fr./G-F) – have made their first career start this season.


  • Since missing the Maryland game on Dec. 4 due to illness, junior forward Jack Cooley has averaged 18.7 ppg. and 9.3 rpg. in the past three games. He posted a career-high 22 points in back-to-back contests (Maine and Dartmouth) and then deposited 12 points on Saturday against Indiana. The three-game double-digit scoring streak is a career-best for Cooley.
  • Cooley was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll last Monday.
  • In addition to the 22 points versus Maine, Cooley hauled down 14 rebounds. It was his team-high second double-double of the season.
  • Cooley notched his first career double-double by registering 11 points and 17 rebounds against Delaware State (Nov. 18). The 17 rebounds, which included 10 offensive boards, were a career-high total for Cooley. He became the first Irish player to haul down that many rebounds in a game since Luke Harangody had 17 against Louisville during the 2008-09 season (Feb. 12, 2009).
  • Cooley leads the Irish with a 7.6 rpg. average this season.


  • Notre Dame held Indiana to just 26 first-half points. That marked the fourth time this season that the Irish have held an opponent to under 30 points in the first half. Sam Houston State (16), Dartmouth (24) and Bryant (28) were the other contests in which that occurred.
  • The Fighting Irish limited Dartmouth to 30.0% (15-50) shooting on Dec. 10. That is the lowest shooting percentage of the season for an Irish opponent in an entire game this season.
  • Notre Dame held Dartmouth to 26.1% (6-23) shooting in the first half. That is the lowest percentage for a Notre Dame opponent in any half this season. It signified the third time this season the Irish have held an opponent to under 30% shooting in a half. Notre Dame limited Detroit to 26.3% (10-38) shooting in the second half (Nov. 14) and Sam Houston State to 29.2% (7-24) in the first half (Nov. 16).


  • The Irish have made more free throws (203) than their opponents have attempted (182). Notre Dame is 203-285 (.712) from the charity stripe, while Irish opponents are 128-182 (.703).


  • Sophomore point guard Eric Atkins scored a team-high 15 points on Saturday versus Indiana. He has led Notre Dame in scoring a team-high five times this season.
  • Atkins has a team-best 14.0 ppg. average this season. Atkins has scored in double-figures in seven of the 10 games he has played this season. He missed two games (Sam Houston State & Delaware State) due to illness.
  • Atkins deposited a career-high 27 points versus Mississippi Valley State in the season opener.
  • Versus Maine (Dec. 8), he hit a career-high five three-pointers (on seven attempts) en route to 26 points.
  • Atkins is 40-49 (.816) from the free throw line and 16-31 (.516) from three-point range. Both of those are team-best figures this season.
  • Atkins dished out a career-high nine assists against Bryant (Nov. 27).


  • Sophomore guard Jerian Grant, who is in his first season playing with the Irish after sitting out all of last season, has team-high totals in points (150), assists (50), steals (15) and minutes played (397). His 15 made three-pointers rank third among all Irish players. Grant also boasts a team-best 2.94 assist-to-turnover ratio.
  • Grant netted 14 points on Saturday versus Indiana. He has scored in double-figures a team-best nine times this season.
  • Grant scored a season-best 20 points against both Georgia (Nov. 22) and Maryland (Dec. 4).
  • Grant posted his first career double-double by notching 12 points and a career-high 11 rebounds against Bryant on Nov. 27.



  • Notre Dame is 6-1 this season when scoring 60 or more points, while the Irish are 1-4 when scoring less than 60 points. The Fighting Irish are averaging 77.4 ppg. in their seven wins, while they are averaging 59.4 ppg. in the five losses.


  • The Fighting Irish have a +7.1 rebound margin in their seven wins, while they have been out-rebounded by an 11.6 margin in their five setbacks.


  • Junior forward Tom Knight scored a career-high eight points on against Dartmouth (Dec. 10).
  • Knight tied a career-high mark with five rebounds against Dartmouth. He also blocked a career-best three shots versus the Big Green.


  • Notre Dame’s 42 bench points against Maine (Dec. 8) were the most points from the Irish subs since they deposited 48 in the 2010-11 season opener against Georgia Southern, a 98-61 victory on Nov. 12, 2010. Junior forward Jack Cooley spearheaded the bench attack against Maine with a career-high 22 points, while sophomore guard Alex Dragicevich added 14.
  • The Fighting Irish reserves scored 33 points against Sam Houston State on Nov. 16. Freshman Pat Connaughton led the way that night with 24 off the bench.


  • Freshman Pat Connaughton has scored in double-figures four times this season.
  • Connaughton’s 24 points against Sam Houston State (Nov. 16) were the most for a Notre Dame freshman since Torin Francis had 25 against Arizona in the Sweet 16 of the 2003 NCAA Tournament (March 27, 2003).
  • Connaughton’s six made three-pointers (on 10 attempts) against Sam Houston State were the most for an Irish freshman since Chris Thomas had six against Connecticut in the semifinals of the 2002 BIG EAST Tournament (March 8, 2002).
  • Connaughton’s 24 points off the bench in the Sam Houston State game were the most bench points by an Irish player since Chris Quinn netted 25 against Quinnipiac during the 2003-04 campaign (Dec. 23, 2003).


  • Notre Dame has hit 10 or more three-pointers in a game three times this season. The Irish deposited 11 treys against Bryant (Nov. 27) and Delaware State (Nov. 18) and they hit 10 versus Sam Houston State (Nov. 16). The Fighting Irish made 10 or more three-pointers in a game seven times last season.


  • Notre Dame has made at least one three-pointer in 420 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.


  • Eight teams on Notre Dame’s 2011-12 schedule are ranked in the latest Associated Press top-25 poll. Six of the squads – #1 Syracuse, #4 Louisville, #9 Connecticut, #11 Marquette, #15 Pittsburgh and #16 Georgetown – are BIG EAST foes, while the Fighting Irish faced #10 Missouri and #18 Indiana in non-conference action. The Irish will meet ninth-ranked UConn twice during the regular season.


  • Notre Dame will have 17 television appearances during the 2011-12 season. The Irish will appear on ESPN’s family of networks 16 times in addition to being on CBS once.


  • Freshman guard/forward Pat Connaughton also is a pitcher on the Fighting Irish baseball team. Connaughton is the 66th Notre Dame student-athlete to compete in both basketball and baseball and the first to do so since Tom Hansen during the 1973-74 academic year.


  • Tim Abromaitis and Scott Martin will captain the Fighting Irish during the 2011-12 season. Abromaitis is the 19th player in program history to serve as a two-time team captain.