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Notre Dame Basketball

Mike Brey Notebook | Clemson & Scholarships

February 7, 2020
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Notre Dame basketball coach Mike Brey spoke on Friday as the Irish prepare for Sunday's road trip to Clemson. 

On Clemson:
"You're playing the same style of defenses back-to-back. They jam it in like Virginia and make it hard for you to get into the lane. They'll double the post. They'll double Johnny (Mooney). 

"The interesting thing is they haven't scored on the road, but they've scored at home. (Aamir) Sims has become a great college player. They use him like Mooney and he's all over the court.

"They've had explosive nights in that building, especially in the Duke game. I know they've had two tough road games, but what's kept them in it is Brad (Brownell) is a defensive guy. They're athletic and they can make the court seem smaller in the halfcourt." 


On teams being aggressive on defense:
"They aren't as much of a ball pressure (team) as Florida State or Pitt. What we've tried to do is ball screen it early and kind of distort it.  It's almost impossible to make the first pass when you're playing against switching athletic guys out in passing lanes. 

"You almost have to ball screen it or get a mismatch - a big on Prentiss or TJ and then they have to drive a little. You can't just run your motion and swing it. It's physically impossible sometimes. I thought it shocked us early at Florida State. We turned it over a little early against Pittsburgh and we finally adjusted and got some looks." 


On Prentiss Hubb earning some rest:
"Prentiss deserved some rest yesterday. He's handling that thing against ball pressure, guys switching and doubling the whole night. It's exhausting doing that the whole night. He's such a key for us the way he's taking care of the ball." 


On Dane Goodwin:
"I think he's being aggressive. He's hunting his stuff and driving it. We run some stuff for him and out of bounds looks and different looks in the halfcourt. I love how aggressive he is going to the basket. I still think he can hunt his jump shot more. I think he turns down some three-point shots early in the possession, but he's come a long way from last year and the beginning of this year." 


On what he envisioned for Goodwin:
"I thought there was such a skill level, footwork and feel. He's improving defensively and still needs to get better there. I can put him in the class when you first watch Chris Quinn, Steve Vasturia, Matt Carroll play. They have such great footwork. They're like ballet dancers on the offensive end of the floor with how they flow. 

"I thought it was a matter of time for him. He's a tough kid and has an edge about him. He's actually talking more, which is a big step for him.

"He's a coach's son. His dad was one of the toughest dudes to ever play at Dayton. He's got that in his makeup. I think we're getting more of it." 


On if Notre Dame is ready to step up on the road:
"It's a group that feels good about themselves. We know it's a huge challenge. We kept it at one game segments here at home. We got all three of them. If you look at this whole package through North Carolina, it can be daunting. I told them about our travel schedule and we're going to talk about Clemson today and tomorrow. We'll land in Charlottesville on Sunday night at a reasonable time, wake up Monday morning and deal with Virginia on Monday morning. 

"I think our frame of mind is pretty good and our bodies are refreshed after a little bit of rest yesterday." 


On filling all 13 scholarships:
"We never have been by design not filled up. It's never been 'We don't want to have 13.' It's kind of like what fits and how you want to do it. 

"The only thing I would say is it's nice to have one in your back pocket for a transfer. Maybe I think about 12 more than I do 13. I think in this climate with the portal, transfers and having more numbers is not necessarily a bad thing. 

"It's funny how you say it during the season and then when you want to put it into practice, it's harder to fill them because you say you want to take him. Then he says, 'Well, you have those two guys, I'm not coming there.' 

"It's an interesting dynamic how you want to do it, but it's hard to do it because kids really look at where they fit and how they're going to play quickly or early. 

"The best way to fill is transfers. They're sitting out and the year they sit out, even though everyone gets a waiver. The year they sit out is one guy not knocking on my door about playing time, yet they add to the program and you know they're coming. It's not a bad way to fill a 12th or 13th scholarship." 


On losing transfers:
"I've gotten less sensitive about losing guys. Not that we want to lose kids, but it's just going to happen. Chris Doherty and Elijah Burns - it's just the way of the world. Kids are looking to reinvent if it's not happening how they want it. 

"You're almost planning for that now." 

 
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