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#2o9 R.P.I. Notre Dame #42 R.P.I. Virginia Tech:

Virginia Tech men’s basketball returns home in defense of our very own Cassell Coliseum after a dogged rallying chase of the Cardinals that basically got winged at the buzzer and came up one-shot-short. (literally).

The Hokies now host 3 up and 6 down Notre Dame (last-place in the A.c.c. (o-3)). The Irish are also o-2-2 (o-postponements-cancellations) on the year. They were however on a rather rugged scheduling path— what with nearly 50% of their games vs. teams nationally ranked between 13th and 23rd. That’s a pretty tall ask opposition wise as cupcakes in prologue to real-live Conference play this time of year typically go. As these 2020-2021 Fighting Irish ain’t exactly been slipping a lotta incoming punches so far. Nonetheless, what you wanna know is… who is gonna win and by how much, right? So, read on to find, out!

Notre Dame Head CoachMichael Paul Brey: Age=61, 536–285 (.653) overall, 430–215 (.668) at Notre Dame.

Jim Belushi gone Church Lady!

Baller Brey graduated from legendary scholastic hoops factory DeMatha Catholic High School in 1977. As a two-year letter winner under all-everything coach Morgan Wootten, Brey helped the team to a 55–9 mark. He enrolled at Northwestern State University, where he played varsity basketball -as a Forward- for three years (1977–1980). Brey was a standout guard in his collegiate playing days, competing for three seasons at Northwestern Louisiana State (now Northwestern State) from 1977-80. He led the team in assists and steals all three years and still ranks among the top 10 in career assists at Northwestern State. He played his final collegiate season at George Washington in 1980-81 after sitting out the 1979-80 season as a transfer. He averaged 5.0 points and 4.8 rebounds per game for the Colonials, serving as team captain and eventually earning the team’s Most Valuable Player Award.

Coach Brey returned to his former high school, becoming an assistant coach under Morgan Wootten. In 1987, he was hired by Duke to assist under coach K, and in 1995 he took over his first head coaching job at Delaware. Brey guided the Fightin’ Blue Hens to a pretty flighty looking 99–51 record over five years | leading Delaware to two America East Conference Championships and subsequently two trips to the NCAA Tournament. After that, in 2ooo, he got the big whistle job for the Notre Dame Irish. Notre Dame had not been to the NCAA Tournament since 1990.

Brey led the Irish to the NCAA tournament in his first three years as head coach (2001–2003), notching a Sweet-16 appearance in 2003. He has led his team to tournament appearances in 13 different seasons at two different schools. He has won six conference championships, four Conference Coach of the Year awards, and five National Coach of the year awards (all for the same season: 2o11). Good for two Elite-8’s and three Sweet-16’s overall. Coach Brey has only suffered one negative (<.5oo) L’ing season in 21 years. And his teams have enjoyed a post-season in all less three months of March. Coach Brey teams attend with an overall skillful, offensive and a shooters marksmanship rep’.

Brey serves on the Coaches vs. Cancer National Council and has helped raise over two million dollars for the organization; felicitations on that.

Peep Brey was born on March 22, 1959, Brey is a 1982 graduate of George Washington with a degree in physical education.

Daddy Brey has two children – Kyle and Callie – and a granddaughter, Olivia Marie. Kyle was a Te/Fb for the University of Buffalo from 2006-09. Brey’s late mum (Betty) only held the world record in the butterfly events and competed for the United States at the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne, Australia. God Bless.

Notre Dame at a glance:

  • #1, fewest personal fouls/game!!! (kinda finesse looking backcourt centric club).
  • 12th in FT percentage!!!
  • 21st in 3-ball percentage!!
  • 47th best in Assist:Turnover ratio.
  • 315th in 3-point FG percentage D!!
  • 321st in offensive rebounding!!
  • 334th in swipes/game!!!

Returning Starters=2

Notre Dame Strengths:

  • IF, small ball or Golden State hoops is your thang? You’ve come to the right 1-2-3-Wing typea place. As N.Dame is backcourt heavy indeed.
  • This team can flat out shoot the rock accordingly, a very skillful team in biathlon Winter Sport terms on the shootingrange, itself.
  • 6′6″, 2oo lb., Junior year, Dane Goodwin… is a worker bee who ground his way to Most Improved last year. This year he’s all the way up to a pretty dang nifty looking 13.3 ppg as less was expected here. And yet Goodwin’s goodwill delivered mo’… would that we could all say the same. This ‘good’ if not “great” Dane has had a Ragnar typea thing for VTech has he has lit the Hokies up a couple of times along the way. This from a kid who was only: the 2018 Ohio Mr. Basketball, only: the 2018 Gatorade Ohio Player of the Year, and only: the 2018 USA Today Ohio Player of the Year. That’s all. That and he was also only: the 77th ESPN national recruit and he only first-team all-state Golf as well. So, he has some skills, what with masterful shooting (90.9% FTA’s and 42.4% from behind the arc) and to be able to play the alpha technically proficient sport itself at an all-state level. Which only afforded Dane being Honored on the floor of the Ohio state Senate on May 16, 2018, for his overall elite athletic accomplishments at Upper Arlington. Can’t say I’ve biographically read that one before. Dane’s old-man (Damon Goodwin), is the all-time winningest head coach at Capital University (a Division III school located in Columbus, Ohio, suburbs). After he only played basketball at the University of Dayton from 1982-83 through 1985-86 and was only a seventh-round draft pick of the Phoenix Suns in 1986. All his sisters are collegiate volleyballer’s and all his brothers are college hoopsters. So, you know the coach’s son type head-game metrics should be firmly in place here. Now mix in 5.4 rpg and 1.9 apg and suddenly you’ve got a very technically proficient textbook shooter on your hands with an all-around game. And this is prolly a fringe overseas guy for it to boot.
  • r-Sr., Juwan Durham is a virtually 7′, 231 lb. P/F defensive specialist who swats a nifty 2.2 bpg and then chips in-and-around the rim with 7.9 ppg, with 4.9 rpg on 49% bunny or put-back type shooting. The graduate season UConn Husky transfer baller is dogging all of that after an ugly scholastic right-knee blow-out (may St.Nikon help) and you have to wonder what he’d be doing on two good wheels as well? (as poor Juwan only nets ~23 mpg game of P.T. (playing-time) as is). Dang… this from Rivals no.47 kid who only took up roundball in High School itself! And was only twice the AAA Florida (Soph. and Jr. year) Player of the Year! Dang sum mo’… as a Swat Team leading look as beat-up as this kid is is rather impressive indeed. Even mo’ so when you figure that Juwan found about 12 lbs. of right-mass (mostly upstairs) this off-season.
  • 6′3″, 175 lb. Prentiss Hubb is a third-year Point.G masquerading as a protein shake kegger just looking for a headstand weight-room party-animal funnel to happen. As this is one lean kid who on an lb. for lb. basis is about as confident as they come. Finding a whole entire 9 off-season lbs. prolly helped. As has his now upwardly mobile 13.8 ppg and team pacing 4.6 apg which is not bad for being this young/lean. Nor is 3.1 rpg off the ‘glass. Although his 38.7% shooting overall does need to dormitory Raman noodle microwave oven warm-up more than a bit. Hubb was a top-40 high school recruit consensus wise prior to a senior year knee whammy (may St.Nikhon help some more)— whereafter Prentiss only finished ranked no.83 in one national recruiting service. After being a lofty **** consensus pick prior to getting kneed like that. So here again, what would this cocksure One be doing on two good twigs? Tho’ the 87% from the charity-stripe is pretty generous indeed from a kid who can score off the dribble and from the perimeter alike.

    This pasty hommie has a few, hops!
  • One #14, Jr. year Nate Laszewski is a 6′10″, 227 lb. somewhat string-bean looking though springy P/F frontcourt baller from Jupiter, Fla. Nate nets you a most useful and now team-leading 17.2 points with nearly 8.2o rebounds and a swat per a stellar looking 68.5% from the floor. Accordingly, you have to be professionally intrigued by what this thin big man can be if his body every big-baller fills out? As Nate added a 25-lb. ferrous plate last off-season and he prolly could add close to one more. As last year Nate led N.Dame in FT-shooting and from a big that is never a bad thing. Lasz’ was ESPN’s no.51 baller nationally and he sure set a buncha New Hampshire scholastic 3-point shooting marks as a Euro-type Four. And oh by the way… Lasz’ is only splashing home a mind-boggling 59% of his three’s this campaign. Like last time I checked even Adrian Dantley did not net 6 outta 10 for N.Dame way way back when. And that’s a lotta long-range cheddar from a kid who only wore a 2-level scoring tag (down-low & mid-range) coming into this year.

Notre Dame Weaknesses:

  • Very frontcourt thin for being so very backcourt rotationally deep.
  • 3-senior year departures took a whole lotta institutional knowledge, know-how, and systemic experience out the Touchdown Jesus hooping door. Also taken with them would be ~33 ppg and ~16 rpg.
  • Some {sic: previews} say N.Dame to be depth thin overall (not just down low) as well.

Fn Irish Bench: (depth=3’ish)

Stanford transfer and last year’s necessary sit-down Cormac Ryan is a 6′5″, 195 lb. Junior baller with rulebook (now apparently) resolved eligibility issues. Tho’ his current So.Bend averages of: 8.6 ppg with 4.1 rpg and 3.3 apg per virtually matching 30% shooting from the floor and from downtown seem rather rural to me. The rep’ here says that Cromac (cool-name) is a pressure-defender who can shoot and that’s not the worst scorers-table medicine coming in off your bench let me tell you.

6′7″, 220 lb. final season now gone grad-student eligible Nikola -grate name- Djogo got included here just for his grate name and ’cause I wanted to climb his family tree. As you do not see these two Ethnicities paired together too often. Much less when you see them migrating southward to run ball from the Great White North, “eh“. As Nik’ is a Hamilton, Ontario native and this is precisely why assuming make an ass outta me. (and may St.Christopher bless some more and Nik’ has a history of shooting-shoulder surgeries to boot). That said, Mister Djogo does field a Triple-A OFSAA Championship ring (from H.S. Canadian ball) that I’d bet nobody else who ever meets Nik’ in the lower-48 does. However, the 3.7 ppg with 2.1 rpg married to 50% long and 100% FTA’s (limited count admittedly) does not suck.

Trey Wertz is a 6′5″, 195 lb. Jr. year off-G by way of Santa Clara. Where he netted you a credible-looking 11.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game with an engaging 40% from deep. Father, Langston Jr., is a sports reporter for the Charlotte Observer— doubt that hurts, and Trey had good N.C. H.S. numbers. Good, not great or epic. So, his N.Dame numbers of: 9.8 ppg, with 2.5 rpg and 2.8 apg plus 46.2% from 3-point-land really ain’t ½ bad. Not at all.

Beating N.Dame @home as a 7.5 point fave is all about, whats?

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Irish who could fight @Tech=4-5.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is… honestly, I’m not too taken with what Notre Dame men’s hoops have constructed thus far this season.

The kicker raised to the caveat power is, however… that most previews thought they’d do more, their coach thought they’d do more, and frankly, I’m not serially preseason exceptionally inclined to disagree.

Because at least to some measure, Eye too thought they might be doing more. At least say .5oo by now give/take.

And so, did most of my preview mag’s which had Notre Dame picked as an All Coaching Conference centrist type of mid-range (in lieu of their current lowercase) conference ranking pick.

And oh yes, did I mention the look-ahead trap nature of this game with big-bad
Duke on-tap and up, next?
And their best player is cooking with CH4 of late. As #13 (Laszewski) in his past two games, has scored
53 points on 17-for-25 shooting, including 11-for-18 from long range!


Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for nothing round-robin mutually head-to-head just yets. (postponements got in the way of a good oranges to oranges comparison too— St.Corona bless!).

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… V.Tech is up +2% in shooting percentage margin (virtually entirely on D); with the teams awash in 3-point percentage margin (per VT +4% better in defense of the 3 and ND +4% better in offense of the 3), and yet Vah.Tech is up a striking +9 caroms in rebounding margin year-to-date (more so on the offensive glass, where ND is really bad and V.Tech is actually pretty good).

The most recent 5-game metrics say that… the Hokies are now up +3% in shooting percentage margin (virtually all on D); then up a resounding +12% in 3-point percentage margin (again; nearly all on D), and up +8 Windex wipes in rebounding margin (about evenly split; the Irish-4 and Tech+4 for an |absolute value| of “8”).

Notre Dame leads the all-time series against Virginia Tech 9-4, but six of the schools’ past seven meetings have been decided by single digits.

And, if you are paying attention at home… so far? Well, so far all of our A.c.c. contests have been decided by 2-shots once; and 1-shot, twice!

i.e., Mike Young’s margin of error statistically appears razor thin.
(at least thus far in conference play…)

N.Dame is up a smiting ~10% at the charity stripe for the year.
N.Dame is actually up +9 in R&R in the last fortnight of play.
V.P.I. is a .857 host; whereas N.Dame is .333 as a guest.

The Call...

No. 159 Net Ranking Notre Dame @ no. 39 Net Ranking Virginia Tech:

6 PM kick-off!

This game -at least to me- is where things start to grind on you in the All Conditioning Conference— at least a little bit.

The sugar-high of O.O.C. (out of conference) cupcakes is gone.

The opening ‘rah-rah-sis-boom-bah’ buzz of “A.c.c. play” has now waned a bit as well.

Now is when you have to in-league punch the clock and go to work.

And NOW is when (legit/quality) depth just begins to count the most.


This to me is also where we may need/miss our K.State opt-out kid outta the bullpen and off the pine.

Still yet, the 3-point shooting and rebounding metrics of late make it hard to pick against Vah.Tech @home here.

As something seems to have gone a bit sideways over in South Bend. As they sure seem like an anti-Gestalt Team to me. (or, less than the sum of their parts). As the Irish are 3-shots removed from being a .5oo team.

(and yet if my Aunt Kim had nutz-n-a-bolt she’d be my Uncle… Tim).

Nevertheless, this is one of those sleepy-looking mid-Winter trap games.

We should indeed beat Notre Dame inside our very own Cassell.

Although we would do well to go’on and jump on N.Dame early and  often
and get to mid-January just chill-out for it, late.


(77% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech
=75, Notre Dame=67

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2 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Everything you say is good but I am still nervous as VT seems to bring out the best in its opponents but we need a good beat down of anyone who comes to Our home

    1. Eye am really starting to think that Mike Young not only has a thin margin of error,
      he’s already got this team up against its… ceiling.

      Maybe even its… roof.

      And that’s a coaching compliment every bit as much as it
      is a talent/roster cap.


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