April 14, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Three-time All-American Luke Harangody (Schererville, Ind.) was the recipient of the Notre Dame Monogram Club MVP Award for the second consecutive year and junior Tim Abromaitis (Unionville, Conn.) was the winner of the Notre Dame Club of St. Joseph Valley Rockne Student-Athlete Award. Both awards were presented at the annual Irish men’s basketball banquet held on the arena floor of the Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
In addition to receiving the Rockne Student-Athlete Award, Abromaitis and classmate Carleton Scott (San Antonio, Texas) were the co-winners of the Most Improved Player Award. Senior Tory Jackson (Saginaw, Mich.) also was a double winner as he copped both the Captains’ Award and the Outstanding Playmaker Award. Junior Tyrone Nash (Queens, N.Y.) received the Best Defensive Player Award, while Ben Hansbrough (Poplar Bluff, Mo.) and Jonathan Peoples (Bellwood, Ill.) were named the winners of the Team Irish Award.
Notre Dame finished with 2009-10 campaign with its fourth straight 20-win season. That has not happened since the Digger Phelps’ era when those squads produced six consecutive 20-win seasons from 1983-89. The Irish also finished tied for seventh in the final BIG EAST regular-season standings with a final 10-8 mark. It marked the third time in four years and sixth time in the last 10 seasons that Notre Dame has won 10 or more games in conference play.
The Irish made the school’s 30th appearance in the NCAA tournament, third in the last four years and sixth in the last 10 seasons under head coach Mike Brey. Notre Dame’s senior class of Tim Andree (Colts Neck, N.J.), Harangody, Jackson and Peoples closed out their careers as the all-time winningest class in school history as they compiled a 93-43 (.637) winning percentage and also recorded the most wins ever by an Irish class in BIG EAST Conference regular-season play with a 43-27 ledger for a 61.4 winning percentage.
The Irish closed out the regular-season campaign by winning its final three regular-season contest and advanced to the semifinals of the BIG EAST Championship for the second time in four years and third time overall in 15 years as a member of the BIG EAST Conference following wins over Seton Hall and Pittsburgh. Before its two-point loss (53-51) to eventual BIG EAST Tournament champion and Final Four participant West Virginia, the Irish rattled off six straight victories that included three over ranked opponents.
The season also saw head coach Mike Brey celebrate his 300th career win during the season, his 200th career win at Notre Dame and his 100th win in the BIG EAST (regular season and tournament games) as he became just sixth coach in league history to reach the 100-win plateau.
Tim Abromaitis (Notre Dame Club of St. Joseph Valley Rockne Student-Athlete Award and Co-Most Improved Player Award)
Tim Abromaitis was the team’s second-leading scorer in 2009-10 as he averaged career-bests of 16.1 points and 4.7 rebounds. After playing in just 12 games as a freshman in 2007-08 and not seeing action at all during the 2008-09 campaign, he played in all 35 contests and made 26 starts. His 18.2 scoring average in 18 BIG EAST games ranked sixth as he shot 49.5 percent from the field, 42.9 percent from three-point range and 87.3 percent from the free-throw line. Abromaitis was named to the BIG EAST Honorable Mention Team and was named the BIG EAST Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Off the court, Abromaitis was named an ESPN The Magazine First Team Academic All-American. He owns a 3.72 grade point average and will graduate in May (one full year ahead of his class) with a degree in finance from the Mendoza College of Business. A three-time member of the Dean’s List, he will be enrolled in the intensified one-year MBA program during the 2010-11 school year.
Ben Hansbrough (Co-Team Irish Award)
After sitting out last season (2008-09) following his transfer from Mississippi State, Ben Hansbrough was one of three players in double figures as he averaged 12.0 points in 35.5 minutes per game. He finished second in minutes played (1.241) and was second on the team in assists with 153 and steals (37). Hansbrough started all 35 games for the Irish and netted double figures 23 of those contests. He scored a season-high 22 points against IUPUI and topped the 30-point mark on three occasions. Hansbrough also finished with two doubles-doubles, which included a 15-point, career-high 10-rebound outing against DePaul. He also had 10 assists in two contests.
Luke Harangody (Notre Dame Monogram Club MVP Award)
Luke Harangody became the first three-time All-American at Notre Dame since Kevin O’Shea from 1948-50 and was named a Consensus Second Team All-American by the NCAA for the second time in his career. He earned second-team All-America honors from the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) and third-team accolades from the Associated Press, The Sporting News and State Farm/National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC).
The only player in Notre Dame history to score 2,000 points and grab 1,000 rebounds, Harangody finished as the school’s second all-time leading scorer (2,476) and rebounder (1,222). He also finished the only player in BIG EAST history to average better than 20.0 points and 10.0 rebounds during his career. Harangody concluded his career as the league’s third-all-time leading scorer (1,329) and second-leading rebounder (662) and is one of just 11 players in BIG EAST history to earn first-team all-conference honors three times. Harangody averaged 20.4 points and 10.2 rebounds in 65 league games to finish as the only player conference history to average better than 20.0 points and 10.0 rebounds during his career.
Tory Jackson (Captains’ Award and Outstanding Playmaker Award)
Tory Jackson ranks as one of just players in Notre Dame history (the other was Chris Thomas) to score more than 1,000 points and dish off more than 600 assists. He finished as the school’s second all-time assist leader with 694 and led the Irish in assists all four seasons during is career. Jackson also appeared in more games than any other Notre Dame player in program history (136) and made 122 starts during his career. One of just eight players ever to start more than 100 games throughout his career, he scored 1,231 points for a 9.1 career scoring average.
Jackson also won the BIG EAST Conference Sportsmanship Award. He led the league in assists in three of his four seasons. He shares the distinction with Sherman Douglas of Syracuse as being the only two players in league history to average better than 20.0 points and 10.0 rebounds during their careers. Jackson served as one of the team’s tri-captains this season along with classmates Luke Harangody and Jonathan Peoples. He also earned a spot on the BIG EAST Championship All-Tournament Team.
Tyrone Nash (Best Defensive Player Award)
Along with teammates Ben Hansbrough and Tory Jackson, Tyrone Nash was the only other player to start all 35 games for the Irish. He averaged career-bests of 7.8 points and 5.2 rebounds and was the team’s second-leading rebounder. He shot 54.2 percent from the field while averaging 26.4 minutes per game. Nash scored in double figures in 13 contests and recorded one double-double. He also finished with 16 blocked shots.
Jonathan Peoples (Co-Team Irish Award)
Jonathan Peoples served as one of the team’s tri-captains this season. He played in all 35 contests and made 10 starts while averaging 3.4 points. He played in 130 games during his career (tied for third all-time) and made 12 starts. Peoples netted three double-figure scoring outings during the season and scored a career-high 23 points against Providence. In that contest, he connected on six-of-seven shots that included a five-for-five shooting performance from three-point range.
Carleton Scott (Co-Most Improved Player Award)
Carleton Scott appeared in 34 contests and started the final nine games of the season. He finished the season averaging 5.0 points and 4.6 rebounds. In the final nine games of the campaign, he scored in double figures in four of those contests and recorded three double-doubles in the final six games of the season. He netted a career-high 17 points in Notre Dame’s win at Georgetown and grabbed personal-best 14 rebounds against Connecticut. Scott hit the game-tying three-pointer in Notre Dame’s eventual overtime win at Marquette as he finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds. He also led the team with 37 blocked shots.