Junior forward Zach Auguste leads the nation in field goal percentage (.700).

Irish To Meet Michigan State In ACC/Big Ten Challenge

Dec. 2, 2014

Notre Dame Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Game 8
#19/18 Michigan State (5-2)
Notre Dame (6-1)

Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2014
7:15 p.m. (ET)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center
Notre Dame, Ind.

Dave O’Brien (play-by-play)
Doris Burke (analyst)

Broadcast on WatchND (free)
Sirius 93/XM 194
Check affiliates on Pg. 3 of notes packet
Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
LaPhonso Ellis (analyst)


– Notre Dame and Michigan State will renew its rivalry for the first time in 35 years Wednesday night in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The Fighting Irish and Spartans will tipoff at 7:15 p.m. (ET) inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
– Notre Dame is playing host to an ACC/Big Ten Challenge game for the first time. In their inaugural appearance last season, the Irish dropped a 98-93 decision to Iowa in Iowa City.
– The contest will be broadcast on ESPN2 with Dave O’Brien (play-by-play) and Doris Burke (analyst) on the call.
– A free audio broadcast will be available on WatchND.tv. Jack Nolan will handle play-by-play duties, while LaPhonso Ellis will serve as the analyst. The contest also is available on Sirius 93 and XM 194.

– While Notre Dame and Michigan State have met on 94 previous occasions, this will be the first meeting between the two schools since March 18, 1979, when the Spartans defeated the Irish 80-68 in the NCAA Championship Mideast Regional title game in Indianapolis.
– Notre Dame leads the all-time series 59-35. The first game was played on Jan. 31, 1908, in East Lansing, Mich.
– The Spartans are 8-3 in the last 11 meetings.
– Notre Dame’s last win in the series came on Feb. 4, 1974, as the Irish earned a two-point decision (91-89) in East Lansing.
– The Irish own a 35-12 advantage over Michigan State in games played at Notre Dame. The Spartans are 2-2 in four appearances at Purcell Pavilion.
– This will be the first visit by a Spartan squad to Notre Dame since Feb. 5, 1975, when Michigan State earned a 76-73 win.

– Notre Dame is 264-232-1 all-time versus teams that currently comprise the Big Ten.
– In addition to Michigan State, the Irish are also slated to play another Big Ten foe, Purdue, on Dec. 20 in the fourth annual Crossroads Classic in Indianapolis.

– Notre Dame leads the nation in field goal percentage at 58.0 percent (220-379).
– The Irish have shot 50.0 percent or better from the field in all of its games and topped 60.0 percent in two contests — 65.6% (40-61) vs. Coppin State and 62.2% (28-45) against Grambling State.
– Four of Notre Dame’s five starters are shooting better than 50.0 percent from the field — Zach Auguste (70.0%), Jerian Grant (59.2%), Demetrius Jackson (57.4%) and Pat Connaughton (54.8%). V.J. Beachem, who is averaging 16.0 minutes per game off the bench, has connected on 57.1 percent of his shots from the field and 55.6 percent from beyond the arc.

Pat Connaughton heads into the Michigan State game needing just five rebounds for 600 career boards. Earlier this season, Connaughton became Notre Dame’s 56th 1,000-point scorer.
– He would become the first player since Luke Harangody in 2008-09 to score 1,000 points and grab 600 rebounds. Harangody (2006-10) finished his career with 2,476 points and 1,222 rebounds.
Jerian Grant needs 13 assists for 500. With 1,240 career points and 487 assists, he would become the sixth Irish player in the 110-year history of the program to score 1,000 points and dish off 500 assists.

Jerian Grant averaged 19.5 points and 6.5 assists in last week’s wins over Grambling State and Chicago State.
– Grant was 12-17 (.706) from the field and 8-11 (.727) from three-point range.
– He also committed just one turnover in the two games while averaging 29.5 minutes per game.
– His 26-point outing against Chicago State on Saturday matched a career high. He has led the Irish in scoring in three of seven games.
– Overall, Grant is averaging 18.4 points and 7.1 assists per contest and owns a 5.56 assist-to-turnover ratio.

– The Fighting Irish rank 13th nationally in scoring (86.3 ppg.). Notre Dame’s 604 points are the most for the Irish through the first seven games of a season since they tallied 625 in 2001-02.
– Notre Dame has scored 74 points or better in each of its first seven games. It’s the first time since the 2001-02 campaign that an Irish team has opened up the season with seven straight 74-plus point efforts.
– Notre Dame scored 90-plus points for the third time in 2014-15 in its 90-42 victory over Chicago State on Saturday.

– Notre Dame has fielded the same starting lineup of Jerian Grant, Demetrius Jackson, Pat Connaughton, Steve Vasturia and Zach Auguste in each of its first seven games.
– Last season, the Irish juggled its starting lineup throughout the season and ended up with 12 different rotations throughout the 2013-14 campaign.
– Through seven games last season, Notre Dame already had three different starting lineups.

– Four Fighting Irish players are averaging double-figures in points – Jerian Grant (18.4), Zach Auguste (15.3), Pat Connaughton (13.7) and Demetrius Jackson (11.9).
– Notre Dame has had five double-figure scorers twice in the last five games (Coppin State and Providence).

– Senior guard Jerian Grant leads the ACC in points per game (18.4) and assists per game (7.1).
– Grant has had a hand in 41.7 percent (252 points) of Notre Dame’s 604 points this season. He’s netted 129 points and his 50 assists have led to 123 Fighting Irish points.
– Grant’s career 2.52 assist-to-turnover ratio ranks fourth nationally among active Division I players.

Pat Connaughton (30-39), V.J. Beachem (15-27) and Steve Vasturia (11-25) all are shooting 44.0 percent or above from three-point range this season. As a team, Notre Dame is shooting 43.0 percent (68-158) from beyond the arc.
– Connaughton’s 20 three-pointers are the second-most among ACC players, while his three-point percentage (.513) is fifth in the league.
– Notre Dame made a season-best 14 three-pointers (14-25) against Chicago State on Saturday after hitting 12 three-pointers (12-27) in the previous outing versus Grambling State.

– Junior forward Zach Auguste posted a career-high point total in each of the first three games of the season. He tallied 19 points in the season opener versus Binghamton and followed that up with a 20-point effort versus Navy. Against Coppin State, Auguste topped the 20-point mark for the second straight game with a personal best 21 points.
– Auguste was a perfect nine-for-nine from the field against Coppin State and five-for-five versus Grambling State. His performance against Coppin State tied a Notre Dame record for most field goals without a miss in a single game. He ranks sixth nationally in field goal percentage at 70.0 percent (42-60).
– Auguste had his personal-best seven-game double-figure scoring streak snapped against Chicago State on Saturday after scoring nine points. The streak dated back to the final game of the 2013-14 campaign against Wake Forest in the first round of the ACC Tournament.

– Seniors Pat Connaughton and Jerian Grant have spent a lot of time on the court together since they first stepped onto the floor during the 2011-12 campaign.
– The duo has combined for 196 games played (178 of them starts), 2,326 points, 844 rebounds, 703 assists and 193 steals.
– Even more impressive is the fact they have accounted for 6,497 minutes played on the court (33.1 mpg.).

Pat Connaughton has never missed a game during his Fighting Irish career. He has played in all 108 contests, including 92 starts. Connaughton has started 89 consecutive games.
– Connaughton never left the court in eight games in 2013-14 (six times in ACC play).

– Senior guard Pat Connaughton is averaging 13.7 points and a team-best 7.7 rebounds per game.
– Connaughton has two double-doubles this season. He registered 13 points and 11 boards versus Providence and notched 17 points and 10 rebounds in the season opener against Binghamton.
– He has nine career double-doubles, which are the most of any current Irish player.
– Connaughton has pulled down 10 or more rebounds in a game 13 times during his career, including three times this season.

– Notre Dame’s win over Chicago State on Saturday gave the Irish a 5-0 mark at home during the month of November. Notre Dame is 55-1 at Purcell Pavilion in the month of November under head coach Mike Brey.
– The only loss during that stretch was last season’s 83-70 setback to Indiana State.

– Notre Dame posted a 1-1 record at the Hall of Fame Tipoff Tournament at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. The Fighting Irish topped UMass, 81-68, and fell to Providence, 75-74.
Jerian Grant averaged 22.0 points and 7.0 assists per game and he was named to the all-tournament team along with teammate Pat Connaughton, who averaged 15.5 points and 8.0 rebounds in the two contests.
– All five Notre Dame starters – Grant (20), Zach Auguste (15), Connaughton (13), Steve Vasturia (11) and Demetrius Jackson (11) – scored in double-figures against Providence. Connaughton also chipped in a game-best 11 rebounds.
– After falling behind UMass 23-13, the Fighting Irish finished the first half on an 18-5 run to lead 31-28 at halftime. The run eventually reached 37-10 when the Irish took a 50-33 lead before going on to win 81-68. Grant scored a game-high 24 points, while Auguste notched a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Jerian Grant has been named to the 2014-15 John R. Wooden Award Top 50 Watch List. It marks the second consecutive season that he has appeared on this list.
– Grant also was selected to the watch list for the Oscar Robertson Trophy.

– With his 17-point performance against Binghamton in the season opener, Pat Connaughton eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career to become the 56th member of Notre Dame’s 1,000-point club. He has netted 1,086 points in 108 career games (10.1 ppg.).
– Connaughton became the second current Fighting Irish player with at least 1,000 career points. Senior Jerian Grant has tallied 1,240 points in 88 games in an Irish uniform (14.1 ppg.).

– Notre Dame’s season opener against Binghamton signaled the beginning of head coach Mike Brey’s 20th season as a head coach. The 82-39 win over the Bearcats marked his 400th career win as a college head coach. He has registered a 405-212 (.656) record in 19-plus seasons at Delaware and Notre Dame.
– Brey earned his 300th win at Notre Dame last season against Georgia Tech (Feb. 26, 2014). He has compiled a 306-160 (.657) record in his 14-plus seasons in South Bend. He is one of 17 active head coaches to have 300 or more Division I victories at their current institution.
– Only two other Notre Dame head coaches have reached the 300-win milestone. Digger Phelps led the Fighting Irish to a 393-197 record from 1971-91. George Keogan notched a 327-97 mark from 1923-43.

– The 104 points scored by the Irish in the win over Coppin State were the most in a regulation contest since a 106-65 victory over Sacred Heart on Dec. 19, 2011. It marked the first time Notre Dame eclipsed the 100-point mark since a 101-67 win over Cornell on Dec. 1, 2013, and the 17th time that an Irish team under Mike Brey scored 100 or more points.

– The 39 points scored by Binghamton in the season opener marked the third time that a Notre Dame team under Mike Brey has held an opponent to under 40 points and the first time since 2007.
– The Irish limited Chicago State to just 42 points in Saturday’s 90-42 win.
– The 48-point margin of victory over Chicago State was the largest for Notre Dame since a 50-point win (101-51) over Rider on Dec. 28, 2006.
– Notre Dame leads the ACC with 61 steals.

– Senior guard/forward Pat Connaughton has been named captain for the 2014-15 season. Connaughton served as one of four captains for the Irish a year ago and becomes the 22nd different Notre Dame men’s basketball player to serve as a captain in multiple seasons.
– Since the 1985-86 campaign, only four other players have served as lone captains for their Irish teams– Ken Barlow (1985-86), Tim Singleton (1990-91), Ryan Hoover (1995-96) and Rob Kurz (2007-08).

– Nearly 56 years have passed since Tom Hawkins played his final collegiate men’s basketball game for the University of Notre Dame, yet the indelible mark he left on the program remains intact today. While dozens of players have donned an Irish uniform since Hawkins last took the court, none have been able to duplicate his rebounding as he remains the career leader in that category.
– Hawkins, whose 1,318 career rebounds rank currently as the oldest record in the 109-year annals of Fighting Irish men’s basketball, will become the seventh inductee into the Notre Dame Basketball Ring of Honor on Jan. 17, 2015, at halftime of the Notre Dame-Miami men’s basketball game. He will follow six former players–Austin Carr (2011), Adrian Dantley (2012), Skylar Diggins (2013), Luke Harangody (2010) and Ruth Riley (2010)–and former men’s head coach Richard “Digger” Phelps (2014) into the school’s Ring of Honor.

– In early August, the Fighting Irish squad traveled to Italy for a 10-day, four-game foreign tour. Notre Dame posted a 4-0 record. The Irish visited Rome, Perugia, Pesaro, Venice and Como during the trip.
– It was the program’s first foreign tour since 2008 when the Irish ventured to Ireland for 13 days.

– The Baltimore Orioles selected Irish swingman Pat Connaughton in the fourth round of June’s Major League Baseball Draft. He was the 121st pick overall.
– Connaughton spent part of June and July pitching for the Aberdeen IronBirds, the Class A Orioles’ affiliate.
– Connaughton finished his Fighting Irish baseball career last spring. He posted a 3.03 ERA and had an 11-11 record on the mound during his three seasons. He fanned 105 batters in 154.2 innings pitched.

– Notre Dame will battle Big Ten rival Purdue in the fourth annual Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind. The game between the Irish and the Boilermakers will be the second game of a doubleheader on Saturday, Dec. 20. Butler and Indiana will square off in the first contest.
– The Fighting Irish are 2-1 in their three previous Crossroads Classic showdowns. Notre Dame topped Indiana, 79-72, last season and the Irish downed Purdue, 81-68, in 2012. Notre Dame fell to Indiana, 69-58, in the inaugural event in 2011.

– The University of Notre Dame once again claims the 2014 national championship for graduating student-athletes in all sports–in the process posting the top NCAA Graduation Success Rate (GSR) figure (99) for its student-athletes for the eighth straight year.
– The GSR number for all Notre Dame student-athletes rates the Irish first among the football-playing institutions in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A). The 2014 NCAA figures are based on entering classes from 2004 through 2007.
– Twenty-one of Notre Dame’s men’s and women’s athletic programs posted GSR numbers that rank them best in the nation within their sports (including 20 perfect 100 scores)– and 11 produced federal graduation rates that led all NCAA FBS institutions (including eight perfect 100 scores). Men’s basketball at 100 tied for first with 14 other schools.
– Five Irish women’s programs had perfect 100 federal rates ranking them first within their sports among the NCAA FBS subset. Six Irish men’s programs had federal rates ranking them first within their sports (three with perfect 100 scores) among the NCAA FBS subset. Men’s basketball at 85 ranked tied for first with Penn State.
– Five Irish women’s programs had perfect 100 federal rates ranking them first within their sports among the NCAA FBS subset. Six Irish men’s programs had federal rates ranking them first within their sports (three with perfect 100 scores) among the NCAA FBS subset. Men’s basketball at 85 ranked tied for first with Penn State.