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Notre Dame Basketball

Brey: Hubb is Notre Dame's Mahomes

February 5, 2020

As cross-sport comparisons go, Prentiss Hubb couldn’t find himself in much better company according to his head coach.

As in, newly-minted Super Bowl MVP Pat Mahomes company.

That’s what Mike Brey’s texts to his sophomore point guard reveal, anyway.

“Prentiss has total control,” Brey said Wednesday on the heels of his team’s third-straight win, an 80-72 triumph against visiting Pittsburgh. “I text him every now and then, ‘You’re my Mahomes.’ He has total control of this thing.

“And he is our Mahomes. He’s been really good.”

Likewise, Notre Dame’s precocious floor-leader has been rather undaunted by the big moments. After he elicited a technical foul for demonstrably stepping across Syracuse guard Joe Girard last month on the road, Hubb fueled the Irish’s comeback-win.

After he heaved a gruesome airball weeks ago at Georgia Tech, and heard about it from the Yellow Jackets’ students, Hubb merely finished with a career-best 25 points in the Irish’s first win at Tech in five years.

“He’s a huge part to our team,” senior guard T.J. Gibbs said of Hubb. “When he’s able to get going, it makes things just so much easier for everybody else on the court.

“And, you know, he’s a magical player. You see him work with the ball, and we know he’s going to hit shots and do those amazing things for us.”

Brey also points to Hubb’s intangibles; his guard’s embrace of the wunderkind Mahomes comparison and track record of winning.

“Oh, he loves it,” Brey said. “So when Prentiss came in before like the eight-minute time, when we come in at eight minutes, obviously he’s been scoring on the road. He’s been good with the ball here, even though he hasn’t scored a lot. Tonight he had nine, big ones. I grabbed him by the shoulders and I got in his face and I said, ‘Air ball. Air ball. Air ball.’ Because that’s what they said to him in Atlanta, and he went on like a personal, 10-0 Michael Jordan run. Of course he’s laughing, like, ‘OK, Coach. I get it, I get it.’ But he’s my guy, man.”

Hubb catalyzed the Irish’s sprint into the half with a pair of sensational 3-pointers; the first coming at the conclusion of the shot-clock, the latter splashing down as the opening half ended. Hubb, a former three-time Under Armour All-American as a prep player at Gonzaga in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, twice led his team to Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championships.

“He runs this thing,” Brey said. “He is a confident guy; we’ve seen the swagger on the road in tough atmospheres. Tonight, the shot at halftime was a big one. He’s a tough kid. I’m excited he’s got some more eligibility after this year. He’s got a chance to be one of the best guards in the league next year.

“Yeah, they (seniors) love him. They let him talk and he calls sets. He called me off a couple times tonight. I called one out, and he said, ‘No, let’s do this.’ I said, ‘You got it,’ and I sat down. He’s a tough dude, and he’s won. He’s always won. I think that’s a great ingredient to have.”

Kind of like that guy in Brey’s text messages.

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