April 12, 2006
Notre Dame, Ind. – University of Notre Dame men’s basketball coach Mike Brey has announced the signing of Jonathan Peoples (Bellwood, Ill.) and Joe Harden (Acampo, Calif.) to national letters of intent with both enrolling at the University in the fall of 2006. They are set to join Luke Harangody (Schererville, Ind.) and Tory Jackson (Saginaw, Mich.) who signed with the Irish during the early-signing period in the fall of 2005.
Peoples, a 6-3, 210-pound guard, played four years on the varsity at St. Joseph’s High School in Westchester, Ill. A three-year starter, he earned East Suburban Catholic all-conference honors as a sophomore, junior and senior and was selected conference MVP in his senior season. As a senior, he averaged 15.2 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists after netting 15.0 points, grabbing 4.0 assists and dishing off 3.0 assists.
Selected to a number of all-state teams during both his junior and senior seasons, Peoples helped lead his team to a 28-2 record during the 2005-06 campaign as St. Joseph’s captured the East Suburban Catholic league crown for the third straight year with its third consecutive undefeated season. During his four-year career, he helped guide his prep squad to a 99-18 mark, including a 39-0 mark in conference play his last three seasons. Peoples led his team to the sectional finals each of the past two seasons and an appearance in the Super Sectional championship in his sophomore year (2004). In addition, he was twice named to the all-tournament team of the Proviso West Holiday Tournament in December of ’04 and ’05.
Peoples concluded his career with 1,237 points, 339 rebounds, 285 assists, 120 steals and 54 blocked shots. He also owned a career-shooting percentage of .510 and career three-point shooting percentage of .420.
Harden, a 6-7, 210-pound guard was a standout at St. Mary’s High School in Stockton, Calif. He averaged 17.0 points and 10.0 rebounds in his senior season en route to being selected as The Stockton Record’s co-Player of the Year for the second time in his high school career.
Harden led his prep team to a 31-4 record and its first Sac-Joaquin sectional crown since 1989. In addition, Harden’s squad won its first-ever Northern California title before losing in the California Interscholastic Federation Division III championship game.
He also was a second-team all-state selection by callhisports.com and was named to its all-Division III squad.
“Both Jonathan and Joe come from strong high school programs that have been very successful. That was a big selling point for me,” Irish head coach Mike Brey says. Jonathan played for a top-flight high school program. He’s an athletic wing player with a great feel for the game. Joe also comes to us from a very accomplished prep program. He’s a bigger guard than we’ve normally had here at Notre Dame and a player with a bright future.
“We look forward to welcoming both of these young men into our program along with Luke (Harangody) and Tory (Jackson) who signed with us back in November. All four of these players are excited about being part of the Notre Dame basketball family.”