Dec. 15, 2011
|Notre Dame Fighting Irish (7-4) vs. No. 18/20 Indiana Hoosiers (9-0)
||Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011
||4:30 p.m. ET
||Indianapolis, Ind. - Conseco Fieldhouse (18,165)
||ESPN2 (Dan Shulman and Dick Vitale)
|| IU Radio Network (Affiliates) | Sirius 94/XM 194
||Indiana | Notre Dame
||Indiana | Notre Dame
| Internet Coverage
| Social Media
|| @TomCrean | @IUShanaDan for in-game updates
THE OPENING TIP
Indiana is in its 112th season of college basketball and will take on Notre Dame in the second game of the Close The Gap Crossroads Classic. A victory on Saturday would give the Hoosiers their best start since the team was 10-0 in 1989-90.
The Hoosiers are ranked 18th by the Associated Press and 20th in the USA Today/Coaches poll, and entered the rankings for the first time under Tom Crean's tenure after the Hoosiers defeated No. 1 Kentucky 73-72, last week in Bloomington. It is the 499th appearance in the AP Poll (seventh all-time among Division I programs).
The Hoosiers return 93.3 percent of their scoring with 2,078 of 2,226 points returning.
CLOSE THE GAP CROSSROADS CLASSIC
The Close the Gap Crossroads Classic, a product of the coming together of the four most-storied college basketball programs in the state of Indiana, was finalized August 16, 2010. Barry Collier of Butler, Fred Glass of Indiana, Jack Swarbrick of Notre Dame and Purdue's Morgan Burke each signed the Memorandum of Understanding, which provides for the event to be held in the state capital in both 2011 and 2012.
Tom Crean as its 28th men's basketball coach on April 2, 2008, and is in his fourth year with the Hoosiers. He is 227-162 all-time as a head coach and picked up wins over No. 18 Illinois and No. 20 Minnesota last season, his first against ranked opponents at Indiana. He came to Indiana from Marquette where he was 190-96 (66.4) in nine seasons and made five NCAA Tournament appearances, including the 2003 Final Four.
Mike Brey is in his 12th season as the head coach at Notre Dame and his 17th season overall as a college head coach. He is 245-124 with the Fighting Irish and 344-176 overall including five years at Delaware.
Indiana has shot 51.2 percent from the field, 45.8 percent from 3-point range and 74.6 percent from the free throw line. The Hoosiers are second in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage, sixth in the nation in field goal shooting, eighth in scoring margin (21.2) and ninth in scoring (83.7). The Hoosiers are also averaging 24.2 points per game off of turnovers.
With inclusion in this week's AP poll, every four-year Hoosier player since 1950 will have played on a nationally ranked squad at Indiana.
Junior forward Christian Watford was named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week after hitting a game-winning 3-pointer against Kentucky. He led the Hoosiers with 20 points and also had five boards. He leads all Big Ten juniors with 937 career points.
Freshman forward Cody Zeller has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week three times He leads the Hoosiers averaging 15.0 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. He is second in the Big Ten and eighth in the nation in field goal percentage, making 65.8 percent of his field goal attempts. Among national freshman, he is 10th in scoring, first in field goal percentage, eighth in rebounds, and fourth in steals. His brother Luke played for the Irish from 2005-08.
Sophomore Will Sheehey is averaging 11.6 points per game, which is the highest among Big Ten non-starters. He was named Tournament MVP after he scored a career-high 21 points against Butler in the championship game of the Hoosier Invitational.
Junior Jordan Hulls is averaging 11.2 points and has made 18-of-24 long distance shots and is shooting 42.6 percent from 3-point range during his career. Dating back to last year, he has made 52 straight free throws. He had 20 points and five assists at NC State.