Notre Dame (4-2) vs. Bryant (1-4)
Nov. 27, 2011 o 2:00 p.m. (ET)
Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center (9,149)
Notre Dame, Ind.
Live Video Broadcast:
UND.com (free) Radio:
Broadcast on UND.com
Jack Nolan (play-by-play)
LaPhonso Ellis (analyst) Live Stats:
GameTracker (UND.com) Live Blog:
IRISH RETURN HOME TO FACE BRYANT ON SUNDAY
Notre Dame (4-2) will play host to Bryant College (1-4) on Sunday afternoon inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center. Tip-off is slated for 2:00 p.m. (ET).
A free live video broadcast of Sunday's game will be available on UND.com. The Fighting Irish Digital Media radio crew of Jack Nolan (play-by-play) and LaPhonso Ellis (analyst) will call the action (radio affiliate listings on Pg. 5).
This will be the first-ever meeting between Notre Dame and Bryant.
Bryant is a member of the Northeast Conference (NEC). Notre Dame is 24-0 all-time against teams currently in the NEC. The last time the Irish faced an NEC opponent was during the 2009-10 season when they captured a 95-72 victory over Saint Francis (Pa.).
Notre Dame currently has a 23-game home win streak.
PROGRESSIVE CBE CLASSIC
Notre Dame finished fourth in the Progressive CBE Classic. The Fighting Irish went 2-0 in regional-round action by capturing home wins over Detroit (59-53) and Sam Houston State (74-41). The Irish fell to Missouri, 87-58, in the semifinals and then suffered a 61-57 setback to Georgia in the third-place game. Missouri won the event by topping California, 92-53, in the final.
Sophomores Jerian Grant and Eric Atkins along with freshman Pat Connaughton accounted for 43 of Notre Dame's 57 points in the Georgia contest. Grant, who sat out all of last season, scored a career-best - and game-high - 20 points, while Atkins and Connaughton chipped in 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Grant has reached double-figures in points a team-best five times this season. Atkins and Connaughton have both reached double-digits three times.
Sophomore guard Jerian Grant has team-high totals in points (82) and assists (27) and is tied for the team lead in steals (7). He is shooting 56.8% (25-44) from the field, which includes a 57.9% (11-19) mark from three-point range.
Notre Dame's first six games of the season occurred in an 11-day span. The Fighting Irish are nearing the end of a stretch that has them playing eight games in an 18-day span. The stretch will end with a road test at Gonzaga on Wednesday.
ABRO IMPRESSIVE IN RETURN
Forward Tim Abromaitis returned to the Irish lineup on Monday against Missouri following a four-game suspension. Abromaitis posted team-high totals in points (22), rebounds (8) and assists (3) against the Tigers. It was his 22nd career game with 20 or more points.
The Notre Dame graduate student missed the first four games of the regular season due to a misunderstanding in the technicality of an NCAA rule governing seasons of competition that dates back to the 2008-09 campaign.
A RARE OCCURANCE
The losses to Missouri and Georgia marked the first time Notre Dame has dropped consecutive games against non-BIG EAST teams since the 2007-08 season when the Irish fell to Baylor and Georgia Tech (Nov. 18 & 19, 2007) at the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam.
Sophomore guard Jerian Grant, who sat out all of last season, on Monday was named the BIG EAST Rookie of the Week for his efforts in the first four games of the season. Grant scored in double-figures in all four contests, including two 17-point performances.
Grant became the first first-year Notre Dame player to reach double-figures in points in his first four games since Luke Harangody began his career with five straight double-digit games during the 2006-07 season.
DRAINING FROM DEEP
The Irish have registered 10 or more three-pointers in a game twice this season. Notre Dame drained 10 treys (on 19 attempts) against Sam Houston State and followed that up with an 11-for-23 performance versus Delaware State. The Fighting Irish made 10 or more three-pointers in a game seven times last season.
Four different Irish players established or tied career-high marks against Delaware State on Nov. 18. Senior Scott Martin deposited a career-high 23 points, while sophomore Alex Dragicevich and junior Mike Broghammer tallied career-best point totals of 18 and nine, respectively. Sophomore Jerian Grant matched a then career-high total with 17 points. Grant upped his career-high figure to 20 against Georgia.
COOLEY CRASHING THE BOARDS
Junior forward Jack Cooley notched his first career double-double by registering 11 points and 17 rebounds against Delaware State (Nov. 18). The 17 rebounds, which included 10 offensive boards, were a career-high total for Cooley. He became the first Irish player to haul down that many rebounds in a game since Luke Harangody had 17 against Louisville during the 2008-09 season (Feb. 12, 2009).
Cooley leads the Irish with an 8.0 rpg. average this season.
FRESHMAN ON FIRE
Pat Connaughton's 24 points against Sam Houston State (Nov. 16) were the most for a Notre Dame freshman since Torin Francis had 25 against Arizona in the Sweet 16 of the 2003 NCAA Tournament (March 27, 2003).
Connaughton's six made three-pointers (on 10 attempts) against Sam Houston State were the most for an Irish freshman since Chris Thomas had six against Connecticut in the semifinals of the 2002 BIG EAST Tournament (March 8, 2002).
Connaughton's 24 points off the bench in the Sam Houston State game were the most bench points by an Irish player since Chris Quinn netted 25 against Quinnipiac during the 2003-04 campaign (Dec. 23, 2003).
ATKINS ON THE ATTACK
Sophomore point guard Eric Atkins returned to the Irish lineup on Monday against Missouri after missing two games due to illness. Those were the first two missed games of his Irish career.
Atkins has scored in double-figures in three of the four games he has played in this season. He scored a career-high 27 points in the season-opening victory over Mississippi Valley State.
Against Mississippi Valley State, Atkins was 6-of-7 from the field, including 3-of-3 from three-point range, and 12-of-12 from the free-throw line. Both the three-point and free-throw totals were career-high figures.
Atkins' perfect day from the charity stripe against the Delta Devils marked the most makes without a miss for an Irish player in a game since Tim Abromaitis also went 12-of-12 against Seton Hall on Feb. 11, 2010. Atkins is 22-26 (.846) from the charity stripe this season.
ABROMAITIS EARNS PRESEASON ACCOLADES
Notre Dame forward Tim Abromaitis has been selected to the preseason watch lists for both the John R. Wooden Award and the Naismith Trophy. Both awards are presented annually to the national player of the year. Fifty student-athletes appear on both watch lists.
Abromaitis was named to the six-man preseason All-BIG EAST First Team.
The Fighting Irish forward also is one of 30 candidates up for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
414 AND COUNTING
Notre Dame has made at least one three-pointer in 414 straight contests dating back to the 1998-99 campaign. The Fighting Irish have made at least one three pointer during every game of the Mike Brey era. The last time an Irish team failed to hit a three-pointer in a game was in a 101-70 loss to Connecticut at the Hartford Civic Center on Jan. 12, 1999. Notre Dame finished 0-7 from beyond the arc in that contest. In 2008-09, the Irish set a single-season three-point record with 319.
Seven teams on Notre Dame's 2011-12 schedule are ranked in the latest Associated Press top-25 poll. Five of the squads - #4 Connecticut, #5 Syracuse, #7 Louisville, #16 Marquette and #17 Pittsburgh - are BIG EAST foes, while the Fighting Irish faced #21 Missouri on Monday and will also meet #19 Gonzaga in non-conference action. The Irish will face fourth-ranked UConn twice during the regular season.
BACK TO THE BB&T
Notre Dame will meet Maryland on Dec. 4 in the BB&T Classic at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. The Fighting Irish will be making their third appearance in the event, which is held annually in the nation's capital. Each of the last two meetings between Notre Dame and Maryland has occurred at the BB&T Classic. Notre Dame topped Maryland, 79-67, in 2002 en route to the event title. The Irish bested the Terrapins, 81-74, in the 2006 BB&T Classic.
Notre Dame will battle instate rival Indiana in the inaugural Crossroads Classic at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind. The game between the Irish and the Hoosiers is part of a doubleheader on Saturday, Dec. 17. Purdue and Butler meet in the first game at 2:00 p.m. (ET) followed by Notre Dame and Indiana at 4:30 p.m. (ET).
LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION
Notre Dame will have 17 television appearances during the 2011-12 season. The Irish will appear on ESPN's family of networks 16 times in addition to being on CBS once.
Freshman guard/forward Pat Connaughton also is a pitcher on the Fighting Irish baseball team. Connaughton is the 66th Notre Dame student-athlete to compete in both basketball and baseball and the first to do so since Tom Hansen during the 1973-74 academic year.
Tim Abromaitis and Scott Martin will captain the Fighting Irish during the 2011-12 season. Abromaitis is the 19th player in program history to serve as a two-time team captain.
WHAT A RUN
The past four seasons has produced the most regular-season BIG EAST victories (46) in school history. The Irish have gone 46-26 in BIG EAST regular-season play over the past four seasons.
Last season's 27 wins overall (27-7) were the most in the modern era of Fighting Irish basketball. Notre Dame's highest win total ever was 33 (33-7) in 1908-09.
The 14 regular-season BIG EAST victories in 2010-11 tied the program standard. The Fighting Irish went 14-4 in BIG EAST play in 2007-08.
Notre Dame's 15 BIG EAST wins (14 regular season, 1 tournament) last season were the most in program history (combined regular season and tournament).
Mike Brey is in his 12th season along the Irish sidelines. He is the third-longest tenured coach in the BIG EAST, behind only Jim Boeheim of Syracuse and Jim Calhoun of Connecticut. Brey stands sixth all-time in career BIG EAST victories (both regular-season and tournament) with his 119-83 (.589) mark. He is one of eight coaches in BIG EAST history to record 100 conference wins.