Notre Dame Basketball

Mike Brey Notebook | Maryland Preview

December 3, 2019

Notre Dame basketball coach Mike Brey spoke on Wednesday as the Irish prepare for No. 3 Maryland on Wednesday night. 

On ACC/Big 10 Challenge: 
"You want to be part of it. We've been pretty good in it. Going on the road to play these guys is an opportunity for you. It's strength of schedule and an opportunity. You almost look at it as an extension of 20 league games. you have an opportunity to play on a big stage. 

"We played on a big stage and in a tough atmosphere out of the gate. We played pretty well, but we weren't quite ready to finish. I'd like to see us finish one and maybe we're ready to do that." 

On being ready for Maryland:
"We're more confident. I think our defense will be challenged. They're really a gifted offensive team. We'll have to score. If we can't shoot it solidly, we're not going to beat good teams. 

"We're moving the ball great and leading the country in assist/turnover, our rightful spot and we're getting good looks. the last game, we were knocking some of those down. We'll have to do that close to 40 minutes tomorrow night. 

On Maryland:
"The point guard is a big-time winner. (Anthony) Cowan really makes them go. Rex will start on him, but a lot of guys have to guard him. Do we change defenses to throw him? Every time they've been in crunch time, he makes the plays for them.  (Darryl) Morsell is a winner too. We know him well. We recruited the heck out of him. Cowan has just driven the bus for them." 

On defense:
"We'll play some (zone). You always read the tea leaves on that. There have been games where we've gotten into 23 and stayed in it for maybe half of a game. We'll start man.

"They played smaller the other day and didn't play two bigs. That means John (Mooney) will have to start in front of Morsell which can concern you long-term. We've got to change defenses." 

On being prepared for Maryland:
"We've come leaps and bounds since North Carolina. I thought we were really good that night. We were ready to go and compete. I like where Dane (Goodwin) and Nate (Laszewski) are right now and where they're trending. 

"I don't know if they were there on November 4th. This stretch at home helped us get a little confident. We had to fight our way through some stuff." 

On assist/turnover ratio:
"It's something we really talk about. Sharing the ball is under the title of playing the right way. I've used a couple clips throughout the preseason and where we've shared it and made the extra pass. 

"We recruit to that. I like that our big guys are good with the ball. Our guards have always been good with the ball, but when you have bigger guys - John Mooney has made great strides with the ball. He has more assists than turnovers. Juwan (Durham) has been good with it and Nate is getting better." 

On Juwan Durham:
"I don't know if Juwan Durham is ever going to change. Juwan Durham is Juwan Durham and we ride him when he's playing well. We rotate out of it when not. Coach (Ryan) Humphrey have talked about that a lot. 

"He does give you a defensive presence every time he's on the floor even if he doesn't bloc ka shot. People look around for him now. When he's in the middle of our zone, our zone is better when he's back there.

"There will be nights he plays 25 minutes and nights where he plays 15. For him, he's still probably developing for a guy who injuries and didn't play much. He's been a key guy for us." 

On upsets in college basketball and Notre Dame's opportunity:
"It's just how crazy our game is getting. The mid-major vs. major matchups - each year they have got more interesting. It's just they're beating people. We've escaped with our life a couple times, so you're thankful you've escaped with your life a couple times. 

"For your guys, it's a great opportunity. It's a big week for us. We turn around and we have a league game on Saturday afternoon. We step it up a level and it's time to do that."

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Mike Brey Notebook | Maryland Preview

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