Nov. 22, 2004
Date: Tuesday, November 23, 2004
Place: Joyce Center (11,418)
Time: 7:30 p.m. (EST)
Radio: Notre Dame Sports Properties (Jack Lorri, Jack Nolan) originates the Notre Dame Radio Network which includes: WZOW 97.7 FM and 102.3 FM (South Bend, Ind./Michiana Region); ESPN 1000 AM (Chicagoland area); ESPN 950 AM (Indianapolis, Ind.); WGL 1250 (Fort Wayne, Ind. and Northeast Indiana); WEFM 95.9 (Michigan City and Gary, Ind.), WLUV 96.7 FM and 1520 AM (Rockford and DeKalb, Ill. and Beloit and Janesville, Wis.); ESPN 1480 AM-WRSW (Warsaw, Ind.) and WAMW 107.9 FM and 1580 AM in Washington, Ind.). All radio broadcasts can also be heard through the World Wide Web at www.und.com. and on SIRIUS Satellite Radio.
Real-Time Stats: Live in-game statistics are available for all home games, via the Notre Dame athletic website (www.und.com).
Coming off a 66-59 victory over Harvard in the season opener on Friday night, the Irish return to action Tuesday against the Mastodons of IPFW … Tonight’s contest will mark the first-ever meeting between the two schools … IPFW, an independent, was 3-25 last season … The Mastodons enter this evening’s matchup with a 2-1 record following a 61-54 victory over Grand Valley State on Saturday night … IPFW opened up the season with a 69-51 loss to George Mason in the Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament in Memphis and then defeated Savannah State 71-60 in the consolation game … Notre Dame will complete a three-game homestand on Friday, November 26 when they play host to Charleston Southern, another first-time opponent to the Irish schedule … Following that contest, the Irish play back-to-back Big 10 contests on the road at Michigan and Indiana.
Celebrating 100 Seasons:
The 2004-05 season marks the 100th season for the Notre Dame men’s basketball program … A special logo has been designed and there will be events throughout the season commemorating the occasion … Notre Dame is one of 13 Division I schools celebrating its 100th season of basketball this year … The others include: Dayton, Delaware, Duke, Georgia, Howard, Illinois, Miami (Ohio), Northwestern, Oregon, Virgnia, William and Mary and Wyoming.
Notre Dame played its first varsity game on January 29, 1898 (a 64-8 loss to First Regiment) … The Irish played two other games that season and finished with a 1-2 record … The following year, they played two games in 1899 and then did not field a team again until the 1907-08 campaign.
Starting The Season Ranked:
For the second consecutive year and 24th time in the program’s history, Notre Dame begins the season ranked — 20th in the Associated Press and 21st in the ESPN/USA Today preseason rankings … This marks the third time a Notre Dame team under head coach Mike Brey has been ranked … His first Irish team, the 2000-01 squad, started the year tied for 15th in the AP Poll and were 17th in the ESPN/USA Today ranking … Last season 2003-04 squad was 21st and tied for 19th, respectively in the two polls.
Irish In Season Openers:
With its win over Harvard, Notre Dame owns an all-time record of 82-18 (.820) all-time in season openers and have won all four of its season openers under head coach Mike Brey … Since the opening of the Joyce Center in 1968-69, Irish teams are 31-6 (.837) in home openers … The last time Notre Dame lost a season opener was to Miami (Ohio) at home (76-65) on November 13, 1998.
Irish Roll Under Brey In November:
Under head coach Mike Brey, the Irish are 17-1 all-time in games played during the month of November … The lone November loss was to Creighton 80-75 in the championship game of the Guardians Classic on Nov. 26, 2002 … The November record by year under Brey — 2000-01 (3-0), 2001-02 (6-0), 2002-03 (5-1), 2003-04 (2-0) and 2004-05 (1-0).
History Lesson I:
Friday night’s game against Harvard marked the 2,401th in the program’s history … Notre Dame has posted a 1549-851 for a .645 winning percentage.
History Lesson II:
Tonight’s contest is the first-ever meeting between Notre Dame and IPFW … The two schools are also scheduled to play each during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 campaign … Next year’s matchup will be in Fort Wayne … IPFW is one of three first-time opponents on the Irish schedule this season … The other two are Charleston Southern and Samford.
For the second time in school history and for the second consecutive year, Notre Dame will have four captains … Seniors Chris Thomas and Jordan Cornette will once again serve as captains and are joined this year by juniors Torin Francis and Chris Quinn.
On This Date:
Notre Dame has played on November 23 on two other occasions and is 1-1 in those contests … The 1990-91 Irish team suffered an 85-77 setback to Duke in the consolation game of the 1990 NIT at Madison Square Garden … Notre Dame’s 2001-02 squad also played on this date, defeating Hawaii-Pacific 98-58 in the opening round of the Hawaii-Pacific Thanksgiving Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii … The Irish went on to capture the tournament title that weekend en route to starting the season with a 7-0 record.
Scouting the Irish:
Chris Quinn and Chris Thomas combined 37 points in Notre Dame’s 66-59 victory over Harvard on Friday night … The Irish struggled offensive in the second half, converting just 6-28 field goals for 21.4 percent accuracy from the field … It marked the second-lowest shooting percentage for a Mike Brey-coached team in a half … Notre Dame finished the game shooting 34.8 percent from the field, marking just the eighth time during the Brey era that an Irish team has shot under 35.0 percent from the field … Notre Dame’s frontline of Jordan Cornette, Torin Francis and Dennis Latimore combined for just six fields on 21 attempts (.285) and scored just 19 points …. The Irish were outrebounded 41-35 in the game by the Crimson who had two players post double doubles — Brian Cusworth (15 pts., 13 rebs.) and Matt Stehle (13 pts., 10 rebs.) … Notre Dame had just nine assists in the game (none in the second half) … The Irish did, however, force 19 points (scoring 17 off of turnovers) and made 15 steals … Quinn’s game-high six tied a personal best … Latimore played a career-high 30 minutes in his first game in an Irish uniform and grabbed eight rebounds … Francis led the Irish with nine boards.
Game Time Changes:
Since the release of the initial schedule, there have been a couple of game time changes … The road game at Seton Hall (January 5) and Villanova (January 26) have been moved to 8:00 p.m. starts instead of the orginal 7:30 p.m. starts that were announced … Both games will now also be televised by ESPN2.
The Irish All-Time:
In 99 seasons, Irish teams have posted a 1549-851 mark (.645).
Irish Set For Five Repeat Games In BIG EAST Play:
Notre Dame will play Connecticut, Georgetown, Pittsburgh, Syracuse and Villanova twice (both home and away) as part of its BIG EAST Conference regular-season 16-game slate during the 2004-05 campaign … Playing under a straight divisional format with 12 teams this year, each school will play each other at least once … In addition to its home-and-home series with the Huskies, Hoyas, Panthers, Orange and Wildcats, Notre Dame will face Boston College, Rutgers and St. John’s at home … The Irish are scheduled for road games at Providence, Seton Hall and West Virginia.
Thomas, Francis On Wooden And Naismith Honor Rolls:
For the second consecutive year, Chris Thomas and Torin Francis are among 50 candidates for both the John R. Wooden All-America Team and Naismith Trophy award … The Irish duo are among seven BIG EAST players named to the Wooden All-America Team, which also included five other conference players — Ryan Gomes (Providence), Carl Krauser (Pittsburgh), Gerry McNamara (Syracuse), Craig Smith (Boston College) and Hakim Warrick (Syracuse) … All but Smith was named one of the 50 finalists for the the Naismith trophy.
Home Sweet Home:
Since the inaugural season (1968-69) at the Joyce Center, Notre Dame owns a 432-131 record all-time for a .767 winning percentage … The Irish are 47-16 (.746) at the Joyce Center during Mike Brey’s four-plus seasons, and since the 1996-97 campaign, they own an 96-33 mark for a .744 winning percentage … Notre Dame was 14-2 at home in 2002-03, winning 10-plus games for the sixth time in seven years.
Toughest Ticket in Town:
Notre Dame’s success on the hardwood has paid dividends at the box office … For the fourth consecutive year, the number of season ticket holders increased, and already this season, six games are sold out (DePaul, Syracuse, St. John’s, Connecticut, UCLA and Pittsburgh) … Notre Dame students also showed their support for the Irish as the student allotment of 3,000 was a complete sellout in less than three hours.
Irish Medical Update:
Since March, five Irish players have had some type of surgical procedure. Forward Torin Francis had back surgery on March 8 to repair a herniated disc. He returned to the basketball court in June and has been able to play with the team during its summer off-season conditioning program. Point guard Chris Thomas underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee on April 9 for a tear on his left kneecap. He was cleared to return to the court sometime in August. Rick Cornett had surgery for a stress fracture (broken left foot) on July 23. Rob Kurz had surgery on September 14 for a fractured jaw and walk-on Greg Bosl had surgery recently to remove a screw in his foot after suffering a break in August.
BIG EAST Distinction:
Although Notre Dame fell one game short of recording its fourth straight 10-win season in league, the Irish own the distinction, along with Syracuse, as being the only two schools to post winning conference records each of the last four seasons … Notre Dame has gone 11-5 (2000-01), 10-6 (2001-02), 10-6 (2002-03) and 9-7 (2003-04), while Syracuse has posted marks of 10-6 (2001-01), 9-7(2001-02), 13-3 (2002-03) and 11-5 ( 2003-04).
BIG EAST Season No. 10 for Irish:
The 2004-05 campaign marks Notre Dame’s 10th year as a member of the BIG EAST Conference … In nine seasons as a conference member, Notre Dame owns a 75-77 record all-time in conference regular-season play for a .493 winning percentage … In their first five years, Irish teams were 35-53 (.398), but since Mike Brey took over the program, Notre Dame has compiled a 40-24 (.625) mark in regular-season play.
BIG EAST Formula For Success Under Brey:
Since his arrival at Notre Dame, Mike Brey has led Notre Dame to a 40-24 (.675) record in BIG EAST regular-season games and 2-4 mark in tournament play for an overall of 42-28 (.600) against league foes … In Brey’s first season, the Irish posted their first-ever winning record in BIG EAST play and won the BIG EAST West Division title with an 11-5 mark … Prior to Brey’s arrival at Notre Dame, Irish teams had a 35-53 (.398) regular-season record since joining the league in 1995-96.
BIG EAST Honor Roll:
At BIG EAST Media Day on October 27 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, Notre Dame was tabbed to finish fourth behind Syracuse, Connecticut and Pittsburgh in the regular-season race on a vote by the league’s head coaches … Chris Thomas was a preseason first-team all-BIG EAST selection, the only Irish player named to one of the preseason teams.
Over The Century Mark:
Notre Dame has scored 100-plus points five times during the Mike Brey era … The last 100-point effort by an Irish team was in a 101-96 overtime decision at Boston College on January 25, 2003.
Thomas In Elite Scoring Company:
Chris Thomas has a career scoring average of 18.7 points per game as he stands eighth on the all-time Notre Dame career scoring list with 1,800 career points in 100 career outings … Only four other players have scored more points in the first three seasons of their career — Austin Carr (2,560 points in 75 games), Adrian Dantley (2,223 points in 86 games), Troy Murphy (2,011 points in 94 games) and Tom Hawkins (1,820 points in 79 games).
Chris Thomas played an started in his 100th career game at Notre Dame in Friday night’s season opener against Harvard …He ranks second all-time in consecutive game started … Thomas should eclipse Pat Garrity’s (1994-98) career mark of 111 consecutive starts … John Paxson (1979-83) stands third all-time with 85 consecutive starts (86 total during his career) … Paxson started every game in his final three seasons … Thomas has never missed a game during his Irish career and has averaged 37.7 minutes per game in those contests and been on the court 93.3 percent of the time in those 100 games having played 3766 of a possible 4035 minutes.
Lending The Assist:
Chris Thomas has led the Irish in assists in each of his three seasons (a single-season school record in 2001-02, 236 in 2002-03 and 150 in 2003-04) … Currently the school’s career assist leader with 643, he will look to become just the third player in Notre Dame history to lead the Irish in assists during all four of his season … Rich Branning was the first player to do so as he led Notre Dame from 1976-80 and finished his career with 466 (currently sixth on the all-time list) … David Rivers (1984-88) also led the Irish during all four of his seasons … Rivers finished as the school’s all-time career assist leader with 586 and held that record until last season when it was eclipsed by Thomas in February of 2004.
Cornette Eyes Block Record:
Jordan Cornette heads into his final campaign third on the all-time blocked shots record with 155 blocks … He needs 46 blocks to break LaPhonso Ellis’ (1988-2002) career mark of 2000 … Ryan Humphrey (2000-02) stands second on the all-time list with 166 blocked shots … He stands fourth all-time in blocked shots average (1.6).
Transfer Of Influence:
Dennis Latimore is the third transfer to play under head coach Mike Brey … He transferred to Notre Dame in the summer of 2003 after two seasons at the University of Arizona … Ryan Humphrey was the first transfer to play for the Irish … He played his first two seasons at the University of Oklahoma … During his two-year career from 2000-02, he played in 60 games and averaged 16.6 points (997), 9.95 rebounds (597) and 2.8 blocked shots (166) … Humphrey was a first-team all-BIG EAST selection in his senior season and earned second-team All-America honors from Basketball Times … Dan Miller played one year (2002-03) after transferring from the University of Maryland and averaged 13.9 points and 5.7 rebounds.
In The Spirit Of Giving:
Chris Thomas’ unselfish play is one of the reasons why the Irish have been successful while he has been in the Notre Dame backcourt. In the 100 games he has directed Mike Brey’s teams, Thomas has helped the Irish compile a 66-34 record for a .660 winning percentage. As a freshman, he averaged 7.64 assists to rank fifth nationally. Thomas then dished off 6.9 assists (eighth in the nation) as a sophomore. He is the only player in Notre Dame history to record 200-plus assists in consecutive seasons. He has distributed 10-plus assists in 15 games during his career.
Friday night’s season opener against Harvard marked the debut for Dennis Latimore in an Irish uniform … He played a career-high 30 minutes in starting against the Crimson … Latimore finished with six points and grabbed eight rebounds … His previous personal best in minutes played was 28 (vs. Oregon on January 3, 2002) … Prior to coming to Notre Dame, he played 20-plus minutes in just eight career outings.
Torin Francis was back in the lineup in a regular season for the first time since the Connecticut (February 9, 2004) last year … Francis missed the final 12 games of the ’03-’04 campaign with a herniated disc … In his first regular-season game back, he scored seven points and grabbed nine rebounds in 32 minutes of action … Francis has started all 55 games of his Irish career.
The Mighty Quinn:
Chris Quinn’s team-high 20 points against Harvard marked the sixth time 20-point performance of his career … He played 38 minutes in the game against the Crimson and did not turn the ball over once … In 11 games in 2003-04 (spanning 390 minutes), Quinn did not commit a turnover … Last season he committed just 37 turnovers and dished off 104 assist and owned a BIG EAST best 2.81 assist-to-turnover ratio … Also during the season, Quinn had a stretch of 159:00 minutes on the floor without a turnover.
Threes The Key For Falls:
Colin Falls’ lone basket of the game against Harvard came from three-point range … He attempted four shots in the contest, which all came from three-point range … During his freshman season, Falls’ favorite shot was from beyond the arc … 37 of his 47 field goals made (.787) 2003-04 came from three-point range, while 94 of his 115 attempts (.817) have been from the three-point line or beyond.
Rookie Roll Call:
Sophomore Omari Isreal and freshman Rob Kurz saw action in their first collegiate contests in the season opener against Harvard … Isreal, who missed all of last season while recovering from the ACL surgery he had in February of 2003, played seven minutes and finished with three points (connecting on a three-pointer in the first half) and a rebound … Kurz played five minutes and had a rebound in the contest.
Keeping It Close:
In the 44 losses suffered by Irish teams in Mike Brey’s four seasons, only 12 have been by 10 or more points and have been by a combined 330 points for an averaged of 7.5 points … Notre Dame’s biggest losses have been on the road at Pittsburgh (72-55 on January 6, 2003) and against Arizona (88-71 on March 27, 2003) in the West Regional semifinal in Anaheim, Calif… Prior to those two setbacks, the worst defeat was a 16-point decision at Connecticut during Brey’s first season … Notre Dame’s 11 losses during the 2001-02 season were by a combined 49 points for an average margin of defeat of 4.5 points … Only one loss that season (versus Georgetown at the Joyce Center) was by double figures, while eight of those setbacks were by five or less points.
The Irish frontcourt should provide many shot-blocking opportunities this season with an opportunity to break the single-season record … The 2002-03 team set the single-season mark with 189 blocked shots for a per game average of 5.59 … The former mark of 178 was set during the 2000-01 season in which Notre Dame averaged 5.93 blocks … The Irish finished the 2001-02 campaign with 163 blocks for an average of 4.94 per game … Last year, the Irish had 139 blocks for an average of 4.34 per game … Under head coach Mike Brey, Notre Dame has averaged 5.17 blocks per game as the Irish have registered have registered four of the top five block totals in school history.
180 And Counting:
Heading into tonight’s game against IPFW, Notre Dame has hit at least one three-pointer in 180 straight games, a mark that dates back to the the 1998-99 campaign … The last time an Irish team failed to hit a three-pointer was in a 101-70 loss to Connecticut at the Hartford Civic Center on January 12, 1999 as Notre Dame finished 0-7 from beyone the arc in the game.
All In The Family:
Freshman Rob Kurz’ younger sister Laura is a freshman on the Duke women’s basketball team. As a matter of fact, she played a regular-season contest on the Joyce Center floor 48 hours before her brother’s home opener. The Irish women’s basketball team hosted the Blue Devils in semifinal action of the Women’s National Invitation Tournament on Wednesday night. Notre Dame won the game 76-65.
Irish Add Four In Early Signing Period:
Mike Brey signed four players to national letters of intent during the early signing period last week … Joining the Irish in the fall of 2005 will be Ryan Ayers (Blue Bell, Pa.), Zach Hillesland (Toledo, Ohio), Kyle McAlarney (Staten Island, N.Y.) and Luke Zeller (Washington, Ind.) … Ayers, a 6-7, 200-pound combination guard/forward, is the son of former Ohio State and Philadelphia 76ers head coach Randy Ayers … He averaged 16.4 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.6 assists during his junior year at Germantown Academy … Hillesland is a 6-8, 220-pound forward who averaged 13.0 points, 9.0 rebounds in his junior season at St. John’s Jesuit … McAlarney, a 6-1, 170-pound point guard, already ranks as the all-time leading scorer in Staten Island prep history with 1,662 career points and a 22.6 scoring average … His 35.6 scoring average and 907 points in 2003-04 for Moore Catholic set the Staten Island high school single-season marks … Zeller, a 6-11, 240-pound forward/center, is a candidate for the 2005 Mr. Indiana Basketball honors … A Streets and Smith’s All-America selection in his junior season, he netted 19.8 points and 9.4 rebounds during his junior year at Washington.
Irish Find Success In The Classroom:
Notre Dame had its best semester ever in the classroom during the spring of 2004, combining for a 3.115 cumulative grade point average … Seven players were named to the BIG EAST Academic All-Star Team — Greg Bosl, John Carlson, Rick Cornett, Jordan Cornette, Torrian Jones, Chris Thomas and Tom Timmermans … To be eligible, student-athletes must have maintained a cumulative 3.0 grade point average during the school year.
Notre Dame Basketball On The Big Screen:
For the second consecutive year, Notre Dame will play a record 13 games on national television during the regular season …. Last year, the Irish also made 13 national appearances during the regular season and appeared on either CBS, ESPN or ESPN2 a total of 16 times … Since the 2000-01 season under head coach Mike Brey, Notre Dame teams have appeared on national television during the regular and post-season a total of 52 times (average of 13 per year) – it’s the most television appearances in a four-year period in the program’s history.
Joyce Center Sellouts:
Since the 2000-01 campaign, there have been 29 sellouts at the Joyce Center … Notre Dame enjoyed 10 sellouts during the 2002-03 campaign, the most since the 1985-86 season. The 29 sellouts from 2000-02 are the most since the 1983-87 seasons.
Notre Dame Basketball Radio Show Returns To Logan’s Roadhouse:
Logan’s Roadhouse Restaurant in Mishawaka will once again be the site of the Notre Dame Basketball Radio Show during the 2004-05 season … The 30-minute radio show will be broadcast live on Monday nights on 92.9-FM (U93 in South Bend) 10 times during the year beginning at 7:00 p.m. … The dates of the show will be December 6, December 13, December 20, January 3, January 17, January 24, January 31, February 7, February 14 and February 28.
The Kevin White Radio Show:
A weekly half-hour talk show featuring Notre Dame athletics director Kevin White airs once again this year on Chicago’s ESPN Radio 1000 (1000 AM, www.espnradio1000.com) … Now in its fifth season, “The Kevin White Radio Show” welcomes a series of guests and prominent figures associated with college athletics, including administrators, coaches and media members.
Notre Dame Athletics Debut On Sirius Satellite Radio:
Notre Dame has increased its radio footprint when it announced an agreeement on August 31 with SIRIUS Satellite Radio to become the official radio partner for Notre Dame athletics … SIRIUS will broadcast selected Irish men’s and women’s basketball games during the upcoming season, in addition to football and other sporting events … In addition, SIRIUS will aid in the development of marketing initiatives with the University’s athletic department as a member of ” Team Notre Dame” … Notre Dame’s agreement with SIRIUS is one of the cornerstones in the formation of SIRIUS College Sports Radio, a partnership between SIRIUS and College Sports Television (CSTV) that includes 23 major universities around the country … SIRIUS radios for the car and home start at $149 and are available at major retailers nationwide … For more, visit www.sirius.com.
`Hacienda Tuition Shot’ Offered At Harvard And IPFW Games:
Two Notre Dame students will get a chance at the ‘Hacienda Tuition Shot’ to win free tuition for the 2005-06 academic year at the next two Notre Dame men’s basketball home games … Chosen randomly, one student from Notre Dame, St. Mary’s or Holy Cross will be called down to the court during a timeout at IPFW (Tuesday, November 23, 7:30 p.m.) contest … The chosen student will then get one shot attempt from half court. A successful attempt will earn free tuition for the 2005-06 school year … Students are encouraged to reach their seats before tipoff as the contestants could be selected before the game begins.
Web Site (www.und.com):
Notre Dame’s official athletic department web site can be found at www.und.com … The web site is created in partnership with College Sports Online of Carlsbad, Calif.
Upcoming Game Promotions:
IPFW (TBD) … Charleston Southern (Notre Dame nesting dolls) … DePaul (Glow sticks).
The return of Irish basketball to national prominence has brought attention, enthusiasm and excitement back to the Joyce Center … The Notre Dame student body has been a big part of increasing the homecourt advantage … In the spring of of 2001, an organization known as the Leprechaun Legion was introduced … Members of the Unviersity’s student body formed the Leprechaun Legion to generate support at home basketball games … The Legion sits in the east end of the Joyce Center and is extremely visible underneath the basket as members of the organization don kelly green shirts during game … Its chief aim is to increase school spirit during games and act as a catalyst for the rest of the crowd … This season, every student who purchased a basketball student booklet, received the “2004-05 Leprechaun Legion” shirt … The shirts are also on sale at home games in the Notre Dame Bookstore and Varsity Shops … Proceeds from the sale of the shirt benefit Coaches vs. Cancer.