Dec. 1, 2008

Complete Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

Notre Dame (5-1) vs. South Dakota (3-4)

Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2008 • 7:30 p.m. (Est.)
Joyce Center (11,418) • Notre Dame, Ind.

TV: None

Radio: Jack Nolan (play-by-play analyst), LaPhonso Ellis (color analyst)

Notre Dame Sports Properties originates the Notre Dame Radio Network which includes: Sirius Satellite WLS 890 AM in Chicago, Ill (Chicagoland area and Midwest); WSBT 960 AM in South Bend, Ind.; XL950 AM in Indianapolis, Ind.; WEFM95.9 FM in Michigan City and Gary, Ind.; WKKX 1600 AM in Wheeling, W. Va.; ESPN 1480 AM (WRSW) in Warsaw, Ind.; WAMW 107.9 FM/1580 AM in Washington, Ind.; WLUV 1520 AM in Rockford and DeKalb, Ill. and Janesville, Wis.; WVIL 101.3 FM in Jacksonville, Ill.; WDMN 1520 AM in Toledo, Ohio; WSSP 1250 AM in Milwaukee, Wis., and WJLS 560 AM in Beckley, W. Va., Sirius Satellite Radio Channel 159, XM Satellite Radio 117 and

Real-Time Stats: Live in-game statistics are available for all home games, via the Notre Dame athletic website (

Notre Dame Entertains South Dakota

  • Notre Dame (5-1) plays for the second time in just over 48 hours when the Irish entertain the South Dakota Coyotes in the first-ever meeting between the two schools.
  • The Irish are in the midst of a stretch that will have them play three games in six days. Notre Dame concludes this three-game stretch on Saturday when it plays Ohio State at Lucas Oil Stadium in the Hall of Showcase
  • Tonight’s contest is the first of four home games for the Irish during the month of December.

History Made

  • Notre Dame’s 93-61 victory on Sunday against Furman marked the 39th straight home victory at the Joyce Center as the Irish eclipsed the all-time school record — a 60-year old mark — of 38 consecutive wins at the old Notre Dame Fieldhouse set from 1943-48.
  • Notre Dame’s streak extends three-plus seasons as the Irish have not lost since suffering a 80-72 setback to Marquette on Feb. 25, 2006.

Harangody Sidelined Indefinitely

  • Luke Harangody has been diagnosed with pneumonia and is sidelined indefinitely. No timetable has been set for his return. Harangody became ill following Notre Dame’s win over Texas on Nov. 26, but did play in the loss to top-ranked North Carolina in the championship of the EA Sports Maui Invitational.
  • Harangody missed the first game of his career when the Irish took on Furman on Sunday. Prior to that game, he had played in all 70 career outings and made 54 consecutive starts.

Irish Set For Five Of Six At Home

  • After opening up the season by playing four of its first five game on the road, the Irish are in the midst of a stretch that will them play five of six contests at the friendly confines of the Joyce Center. The only road game will be a neutral site contest against Ohio State at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind., at the Hall of Fame Showcase.

Climbing The Polls

  • Notre Dame is ranked eighth in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today polls this week. The Irish began the year ranked ninth in both preseason polls and climbed to eighth in the first AP poll of the season. This is the highest ranking for Notre Dame since the 2002-03 campaign when the Irish climbed to as high as fifth in the AP poll and sixth in teh ESPN/USA Today ranking in the second week of January 2003.

Keeping The Streak Alive

  • Notre Dame ran its current home court win streak to 39 games (second-longest in the nation and longest in the 40-plus year history of the Joyce Center) following Sunday’s win over Furman (93-61). The Irish have recorded back-to-back undefeated campaigns at the Joyce Center each of the last two seasons and Notre Dame is the the only school in BIG EAST history to finish undefeated at home in consecutive seasons. The previous mark of 38 consecutive games, which the Irish tied in the season opener against USC Upstate was set at the Notre Dame Fieldhouse and began with a 41-31 win over Wisconsin on December 11, 1943 and ended with a 68-51 loss to St. Louis on February 9, 1948.

The Captains

Irish Roll Under Brey in November

  • With Sunday’s win against Furman, Notre Dame finished the month of November with a 5-1 record. Irish teams have traditionally played well under Irish head coach Mike Brey during the month of November. During his eight-plus seasons on the Notre Dame bench, his teams have compiled a 35-6 (.854) record.

Series Record vs. South Dakota

  • Tonight’s game is the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

Irish Earn Runner-Up Finish In Maui

  • Notre Dame finished second at the EA Sports Maui Invitational in its second-ever appearance in the tournament. The Irish advanced to the championship game against top-ranked North Carolina by virtue of its wins over Indiana (88-50) and sixth-ranked Texas (81-80). Notre Dame lost to the Tar Heels 102-87 in the title game
  • In the win over Indiana, five Irish players recorded double figures with Tory Jackson matching his career-high as he finished with 21 points, five rebounds, six assists and three steals. Kyle McAlarney canned six three-pointers as he netted 18 points, while Luke Harangody finished with 14 points, five rebounds and a career-high five steals. Ryan Ayers netted double figures for the first time this season and Luke Zeller posted his first career double-double as he tallied 10 points and grabbed a personal best 11 boards.
  • In the first game of the 2008-09 college basketball season matching two top-10 teams, the eighth-ranked Irish prevailed by one point over the sixth-ranked Longhorns. Luke Harangody led led all scorers and rebounders with 29 points and 13 rebounds as one of three players in double figures as he recorded his third double-double. Kyle McAlarney finished with 19 points and he nailed five three-pointers while playing all 40 mintues of the contest. Tory Jackson turned in another key effort as he tallied 16 points, grabbed five rebounds, dished off seven assists and made three steals.
  • Kyle McAlarney made a school record 10 three pointers (eclipsing the record he set a last season against Syracuse in February 2008) en route to a career-high 39-point performance against the Tar Heels as the Irish fell in the championship game. McAlarney, who played 39 minutes in the contest, also finished with six assists. Luke Harangody finished with 13 points and seven boards in the loss, while Tory Jackson notched double figures for the fourth consecutive game as he added 10 points.

More Maui Tidbits

  • Luke Harangody and Kyle McAlarney were named to the all-tournament team at the EA Sports Maui Invitational, joining Danny Green, Tyler Hansbrough and Ty Lawson. Lawson was the tournament’s most valuable player.
  • Kyle McAlarney averaged 25.3 ponts, 3.0 reboudns and 3.7 assists as he shot 51.0 percent from the field (25-49) and 55.3 percent (21-38) from three-point range.
  • Luke Harangody ended the tournament averaging 18.7 points and 8.3 rebounds, while Tory Jackson averaged 15.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.3 steals.
  • Notre Dame earned its best-ever finish in its second-ever appearance in the Maui Invitational. In its only other appearance in 1993, the Irish were 1-2.

Big Win Against Hoosiers

  • Notre Dame’s 88-50 win over Indiana in the first round of the EA Sports Maui Invitational marked the largest margin of victory ever for an Irish team in the 68th meeting between the two schools. It also marked the second straight win for Notre Dame against the Hoosiers. The two teams has not played each other since a 55-45 victory in Bloomington, Ind., on Dec. 8, 2004.

Rare 30-30 Outing

  • Kyle McAlarney became the first player since Troy Murphy in 2000 to record back-to-back 30-point outings. McAlarney’s 32-point outing against Furman on Saturday came just four days after he scored a career-high 39 points against North Carolina.
  • McAlarney became the first player since Troy Murphy in 2000 to record back-to-back 30-point outings. McAlarney’s 32-point outing against Furman on Saturday came just four days after he scored a career-high 39 points against North Carolina.
  • The last Notre Dame player to score 30-plus in consecutive games was Troy Murphy when he netted 31 at the Joyce Center versus Loyola Marymount (1-2-00) and 33 against Connecticut (1-5-00) at the Hartford Civic Center.

En Fuego

  • After scoring just 10 points in the season opener against USC Upstate and being held scoreless for just the fourth time in his career in Notre Dame’s win against Loyola Marymount, Kyle McAlarney has averaged 27.0 points per game in the last four outings. He has shots 36-69 (.522) from the field and 30-55 (545) from three-point range.
  • McAlarney set a Notre Dame school record against North Carolina with his 10 three-pointers and then followed that up with nine treys versus Furman. Both were the most three-pointers made by an opposing player in a single game.
  • McAlarney had three 30-point outings last season and now totals five for his career.

Ayers Has Career Outing Against Paladins

  • Ryan Ayers netted a career-high 19 points versus Furman as he connected on 8-13 from the field and was 3-6 from three-point range. His previous best was a 17-point performance in a loss at Louisville last season.
  • It was the second double-figure scoring outing of the season for Ayers and the 13th of his career.

Action Jackson

  • Tory Jackson’s 21 points against Indiana matched the junior guard’s career high and was the third time in his career that he scored 20-plus points in a game. Both of Jackson’s other two 20-point efforts occurred during his freshman season (2006-07 campaign) when he scored 21 points versus Marquette and 20 against Georgetown in the semifinals of the BIG EAST Championship.
  • Heading into tonight’s game against South Dakota, Jackson has scored in double figures in five consecutive games, matching the longest double-figure scoring streak of his career.

Double The Pleasure

  • Luke Zeller’s 10 points and 11 rebounds against Indiana was the first career double-double for the Irish senior. The 11 boards also marked a personal high and the second time this season that he achieved a personal best. In the season opener against USC Upstate, he finished with a career-high 18 points.

A Top-10 Win

  • Notre Dame’s win over number-six Texas in the semifinals of the Maui Invitational was the first for the Irish over a top-1o foe since Dec. 7, 2006 when the Irish beat #4/5 Alabama at he Joyce Center (99-85). Notre Dame is 10-12 versus top-10 foes under Mike Brey.

Just Another Day In The Office For Gody

  • Luke Harangody, who averaged 20.4 points and 10.6 rebounds during the 2007-08 campaign, scored 30 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in the season opener against USC Upstate. It marked the fourth 30-plus point performance of his career and his 26th career double-double.
  • Luke Harangody’s 27 points and 17 rebounds in Notre Dame’s win at Loyola Marymount on Friday night marked his 56th game in double figures and the 23rd time in his career with 20-plus points. The 17 boards were the second-most in 67 career outings and 27th time in his career that he has registered a double-double.
  • His 29 points and 13 rebounds in the win over Texas was the 28th double-double of his career and the 24th game of his career with 20-plus points.

Great Beginnings

  • The 94 points scored in the 95-58 victory over USC Upstate were the most scored by an Irish team in a season opener since the 2001-02 when Notre Dame defeated New Hampshire 99-53 on Nov. 16, 2001.

Zach Attack

  • Zach Hillesland, who battled plantar fasciitis during the preseason and missed the first exhibition game against Briar Cliff, started game against USC Upstate and scored 13 points and grabbed eight rebounds while also dishing off four assists in 21 minutes. Hillesland was 4-6 from the field and 5-7 from the line. It marked 13th time in his career in which he scored in double figures. He scored eight points, grabbed 12 rebounds and dished off five assists versus Furman on Sunday.

Deja Vu

  • Luke Zeller had a career outing against USC Upstate in the season opener as he came off the bench in 19 minutes of action to score a personal best 18 points as he connected on 6-7 shots from the the field and was 4-6 from three rebounds. In addition to the 18 points, he grabbed five rebounds. Just one day prior to Luke’s performance, his brother Tyler scored 18 points as a starter for the North Carolina Tar Heels in his collegiate debut.

Passing Thoughts

  • After leading the nation in assists a year ago (18.4 per game), Notre Dame dished off 25 assists in the season opener against USC Upstate. Last season, the Irish dished off 20-plus assists in 12 games, including a season-high 28 in the season opener against Long Island. Notre Dame also had 20 assists in the loss to North Carolina and 22 against Furman in Sunday’s win. The Irish are averaging 18.7 assists per game this season.

It’s All In The Experience

  • Notre Dame’s starting lineup of Zach Hillesland (83 games played/26 starts), Luke Harangody (70 games played/54 starts), Ryan Ayers (87 games played/24 starts), Tory Jackson (71 games played/59 starts) and Kyle McAlarney (80 games played/61 starts) boast a combined 224 starts in the 391 games the five have combined to play in during their careers. Luke Zeller, who was the first player off the bench in the season opener against USC Upstate, has started 26 games in the 98 that he has appeared in during his three-plus seasons with the Irish.

Top 10 Debut

  • Notre Dame was ranked ninth in ESPN/USA Today Preseason Coaches’ Poll that was released on October 30. It was was the highest preseason ranking ever for the Irish in the preseason coaches’ poll. Prior to this season, it’s highest ranking ever was 17th in 2000-01 in the poll which began in 1991-92. The last time the Irish started the season ranked in the preseason coaches poll was in 2004-05 (21st). The BIG EAST led all conferences with seven teams ranked in the top 25 — Connecticut (2nd), Louisville (3rd), Pittsburgh (6th), Marquette (17th), Georgetown (18th) and Villanova (25th).
  • The Irish also were ranked ninth in the Preseason Associated Press Poll. It marked the fifth time in program history that Notre Dame has debuted in the top-10 of the AP poll.
  • The Irish have not begun a season ranked in the top 10 of the AP rankings since 1980-81 when they were 10th. Notre Dame’s highest-ever AP preseason mark was third in 1978-79. The Irish were ranked fourth in 1977-78 and fifth in 1979-80. The last time Notre Dame was ranked in the preseason AP poll was in 200-405 when the Irish were 20th.
  • A total of seven BIG EAST teams appear in the top 25, including four in the top 10.
  • Seven BIG EAST teams also appeared in the preseason AP poll.

Leader Of The Pack

  • Notre Dame led the nation in assists during the 2007-08 campaign. In 33 games, Notre Dame dished out 608 assists (the third-highest single-season total in school history) for an 18.4 average per game.

Nine Straight Postseason Appearances

  • Notre Dame’s appearance in last year’s NCAA tournament field marked the fifth NCAA berth for the Irish in seven years. Since 2000, Notre Dame has appeared in either the NCAA or NIT tournaments each of the last nine years — the longest postseason stretch in school history.

Five 20-Win Seasons Under His Belt

  • With its 25-8 record last season, Notre Dame reached the 20-win mark for the fifth time in eight seasons and second consecutive year under head coach Mike Brey. Notre Dame’s 20-win campaigns under Brey have been in 2000-01 (20-10), 2001-02 (22-11), 2002-03 (24-10) and 24-8 (2006-07). In the 103-year history of the program, Notre Dame teams have won 20 or more games on 32 occasions.

BIG EAST Turnaround

  • Under head coach Mike Brey’s tenure, Notre Dame has had only one losing season. That season was in 2005-06 when the Irish finished 6-10 after beginning the BIG EAST campaign with a 1-8 record. Since that 1-8 start, Notre Dame has gone 30-11 (.732) over the last 41 regular-season games.

Home Cookin’

  • Notre Dame’s 17-0 record at home in 2007-08 marked just the fourth time since the opening of the Joyce Center in 1968-69 that an Irish team finished undefeated at home during the regular season. In 2006-07, the Irish were 18-0, which marked the most wins ever for a Notre Dame team in a single season. In addition to this year’s team and the 2006-07 squad, only two other Notre Dame squads ever completed a season undefeated at home — the 1973-74 and 1985-86 squads both finished their campaigns with identical 15-0 records. The Irish have been the only BIG EAST team to finish undefeated at home each of the last two seasons. Dating back to the 2005-06 campaign, Notre Dame has won 39 consecutive games at the Joyce Cetner — an active streak that is second among all Division I teams and is the longest during Mike Brey’s tenure.
  • Notre Dame’s current streak dates back to the final two games of the 2005-06 campaign as Irish defeated DePaul (66-61) in the regular-season finale and Vanderbilt (79-69) in the first round of the NIT. Notre Dame’s last loss at home was an 80-72 setback to Marquette on February 25, 2006.

Now That’s Something To Talk About

Notre Dame’s current record-setting 39-game home win streak spans three seasons — the final two games played during the 2005-06 campaign, the entire 2006-07 season (18 games), 17 games in 2007-08 and two gamse into the 2008-09 campaign. Here’s a look at the dominance of the Irish during its present win streak:

Notre Dame Opponents
FG Percentage 1117-2320 (.481) 953-2424 (.393)
3-FG Percentage 345-870 (.396) 258-775 (.333)
Points/Avg. 3,291 (84.4 ppg.) 2,532 (64.9 ppg.)
Margin of Victory +759 points (+19.5)


Notre Dame has shot .500 or better in 17 of 39 games
Notre Dame opponents have shot .500 or better in 3 of 39 games
28 wins by 10-plus points
15 wins by 20-plus points
11 wins by 30-plus points
5 wins by 40-plus points
1 win by 50-plus points

Current NCAA Division I Home Court Win Streaks:

1. BYU 48
3. Tennessee 34
4. Kansas 28
5. Georgetown 24

BIG EAST Win Streak

  • Notre Dame’s 18-game BIG EAST homecourt win streak is its longest since the Irish joined the conference in 1995-96 and is the second-longest in conference history.
    20 – Pittsburgh (6 games in 2003-04, 8 games in 2002-03 and 6 games in 2001-02)
    18 – Notre Dame (1 game in 2005-06, 8 games in 2006-07 and 9 games in 2007-08)
    *The only team that the Irish have not played at home during the streak is Georgetown. Notre Dame will face the Hoyas on January 5.

Joyce Center Streakin’

  • Notre Dame broke the Joyce Center home win streak mark on December 8 with its 108-62 win over Northern Illinois. Here’s a look at the Joyce Center streaks:
    39 – Began with a 66-61 win over DePaul on 3/4/06 (current streak)
    24 – Began with a 94-68 win over Xavier on 2/3/73 and ended with a 94-84 loss to Indiana on 12/11/74
    22 – Began with an 88-68 win over Pittsburgh on 1/26/77 and ended with a 69-68 overtime loss to DePaul on 2/12/78
    16 – Began with a 92-70 win over Fairfield on 12/9/82 and ended with a 51-47 loss to UCLA on 12/3/83
    16 – Began with an 89-76 win over West Virginia on 2/20/02 and ended with a 87-79 loss to Connecticut on 2/24/03.
  • The Irish All-Time

    • The 2008-09 camapign marks the 104th season of basketball and the 14th as a member of the BIG EAST Conference. Notre Dame teams have posted a 1635-894 record for a .647 winning percentage. In BIG EAST play, the Irish own a 115-103 (.528) record all-time in conference regular-season play.

    Always In It

    • Since the 2005-06 campaign, Notre Dame’s 31 losses have been by a combined 222 points for an average of 7.2 points per game. In the 87 losses suffered by Irish teams in Mike Brey’s eight seasons, only 24 have been by 10 or more points and have been by a combined 621 points for an average of 7.3 points per game. Notre Dame’s 26-point loss (92-66)