Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD
Notre Dame Basketball

Game Thread | North Carolina at Notre Dame

February 17, 2020
4,299

North Carolina (10-15, 3-11) at Notre Dame (15-10, 6-8)


Date: February 17th

Time: 7:00 p.m. ET

Where: Purcell Pavilion | Notre Dame, Ind.

TV:  ESPN | Sean McDonough, Jimmy Dykes and Allison Williams 

ACC Standings


Quick Facts 

- Notre Dame has lost seven straight games to the Tar Heels.

- North Carolina beat the Irish 76-65 to open the 2019-20 season on November 6th.

- Senior John Mooney is second in the nation in and leads all major conference players in rebounds-per-game with a 12.8 average.

- Sophomore Dane Goodwin is the only player in the ACC averaging double figures this season with less than three games started.

- Notre Dame is currently eighth in the country and first in the ACC in assists per game with a 16.8 average. 

- Notre Dame leads the country in least amount of fouls committed per game (12.4).


THE STARTERS

Notre Dame

Name Points Rebounds Assists
Prentiss Hubb 11.6 2.4 4.6
TJ Gibbs 13.2 2.3 3.4
Rex Pflueger 5.3 3.2 3.6
John Mooney 16.4 12.8 1.9
Juwan Durham 8.3 5.2 1.0

North Carolina 

Name Points Rebounds Assists
Cole Anthony 19.3 6.4 3.6
Leaky Black 6.0 4.9 2.5
Christian Keeling 5.8 2.5 0.7
Garrison Brooks 14.9 8.6 2.0
Armando Bacot 10.4 8.4 1.3

Preview

Points Per Game
Notre Dame: 74.5
UNC: 71.0

Opponent Points Per Game
Notre Dame: 68.7
UNC: 71.5

FG%
Notre Dame: 42.4%
UNC: 41.3%

Rebounds Per Game
Notre Dame: 37.9
UNC: 42.9

Assists Per Game
Notre Dame: 16.8
UNC: 14.4

Blocks Per Game
Notre Dame: 3.8
UNC 3.8

Steals Per Game
Notre Dame: 5.8
UNC: 6.1

Notre Dame and North Carolina opened the season in a highly competitive game, but both programs haven’t had the season they were hoping for as we hit mid-February. The Tar Heels enter Monday’s game in dead last in the ACC at 3-11 and one a five-game losing streak. 

The Irish had a chance to get over .500 in ACC play, but struggled last week at Virginia before getting blown out by Duke on Saturday. 

It’s the second straight game on national TV for the Irish and they can’t have a repeat performance of 48 hours ago. 

“For us, the whole last 10 minutes in timeouts I was talking about Monday night,” stated Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey. “Because we’ve got to turn around mentally here and get ready to play against North Carolina on Monday and see if we can get out of this stretch that started at Clemson at 2-2.”

Brey glowed about his senior leadership last week, but the Duke game capped off a bad week for two of Notre Dame’s seniors. Two players Brey needs to produce at this point n the year.

TJ Gibbs and Rex Pflueger were held scoreless on Saturday and are a combined 2-for-29 over the last two games for a total of six points (all by Gibbs). 

North Carolina isn’t Duke, but the Tar Heels can certainly pressure the ball and that’s the blueprint for giving the Irish fits on the offensive end of the floor. 

Gibbs will need to score as well as sophomore point guard Prentiss Hubb, who has scored in double-figures just once in the last six games. 

Cole Anthony scored 34 points and pulled down 11 rebounds in the season-opener and the Irish will need to find a way to slow him down on Monday. Outside of Anthony, the Tar Heels have struggled to find consistent offense similar to Notre Dame.

North Carolina is rebounding the ball in typical fashion at essentially 43 per game. John Mooney will need to come up big on the glass and Juwan Durham having another big game would certainly help as the Irish need size to compete with the Tar Heels big men. 

For the Irish to win, they will need to hold Cole Anthony under 17 points and hit at least 11 three-pointers. 

Prediction: North Carolina 73 Notre Dame 70

 
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