Looks like college basketball is staying a long way off, but Midnight Madness just happened, so it’s closer than you might think. To that end, we should take a look at who makes up Notre Dame’s roster for the coming season. Many believe it is the team that can pull the program out of the doldrums and get it back on track to respectability. A major step towards getting people to believe it would be Ireland’s first selection in the NCAA tournament since 2017, which was also the last year they finished above .500 against ACC opponents.
This will be the Irishman’s 22nd iteration with Mike Brey as their coach. Although he has more wins than anyone in the history of the program, he has lost two seasons in the past three and three conference record losers in the past four years. If he’s unable to get this group to reach their full potential, questions about their future in South Bend will certainly arise. Here are the players who could determine where Brey and the program are heading in the future:
The South Bend native is the first alumnus of the city’s public school system to sign with the Irish since Michael Smith in 1985. He has been one of Indiana’s top prep players for the past two years, winning numerous honors and being nominated as McDonald’s All. -American. As a senior at Riley, he averaged 27.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.1 assists per game.
– Notre-Dame basketball (@NDmbb) November 11, 2020
Like Wesley, he is from South Bend and has won numerous honors in Indiana over the past two years. He also won a McDonald’s All-American nomination. He graduated from St. Joseph as the all-time school and county scorer with 1,996 points.
After two years of remarkable play at Santa Clara, he struggled in his first year with the Irish. Faced with stiff ACC competition from what he was used to at the West Coast Conference, his numbers plunged. Still, he was good enough to start 14 of his 21 games.
Perhaps the Irishman’s best player, he led the team in points (14.6) and the ACC in assists (5.8) last season while setting career highs in both categories. . This undoubtedly played a role in becoming the only Irish player in any conference last season, making the third team. He scored a large chunk of his goals with the 3-point pointer, making 65 of them to place second in the conference.
– Alex Wade (@ Alex_wade20) January 19, 2021
The San Diego native joins the Irish as a substitute this season. The four-year college captain at Cathedral Catholic has gone on to become the school’s all-time assists leader and one of San Diego County’s top five. As a senior, he was the Western League’s Player of the Year, albeit during a season cut short by the pandemic.
After being away for a year, the transfer from Stanford wasted no time in his first season at South Bend, improving his numbers almost across the board. He provided a balanced line of 9.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game. He made 16 starts and missed only one game.
He played 15 games in the freshman, starting the Irish victory in Miami. He hit double digits in just a few minutes twice in those games. His best score was six points when the Irish lost in the ACC tournament to North Carolina.
As well as leading the Irish with a career-high 7.3 rebounds per game, he led the ACC with a true shooting percentage of 0.691. This percentage was good for the third in the country. Shooting that clip led to a career-high 13.3 points per game.
Yale’s transfer comes to the Irish after being absent last season. In 2019-2020, he was named Ivy League Player of the Year after shooting 63.0% from the field in 30 games. He also averaged 17.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per game, although that came up against weak schedule strength.
Taylor is Irish!
Elijah Taylor, a 6-8 forward from Philly and Imhotep Institute signed his NLI to join our program.
Facts about Taylor:
âï¸ Led Imhotep to 3 state titles PIAA 4A
âï¸Average of 11.9 pts and 7.3 reb with the AAU team final at Peach Jam 2019
âï¸Consensus âï¸âï¸âï¸ pic.twitter.com/Lz70nNfVd6
– Notre-Dame basketball (@NDmbb) November 13, 2019
The Philadelphia native missed his first season after undergoing ankle surgery earlier this year. A top Pennsylvania high school rookie, Taylor will add depth to a striker position the Irish lacked in 2020-21.
He has continued to improve throughout his university career. In 2020-21, he started a career high of 19 games while averaging career-highs in points (11.8), rebounds (5.2), assists (1.7) and minutes (33 , 3). All eyes will be watching to see if he can further increase his production.
He has been badly bitten by the injury virus since joining the Irish. After recovering from shoulder surgery he had in his first year, he tore his ACL early in his second year, then broke his kneecap in his surgically repaired knee. Having missed all of last season, he hopes this is the year he can stay healthy.
His only start in 15 games came when the Irish won in Miami. However, he never scored more than one basket per game. He reached his season-high three points twice and recorded six rebounds, a season-high, in a regular-season loss to North Carolina.
His nine games in 2020-21 were three short of the previous season. He scored three points in Game 1 of the season at Michigan State, but never got past that. For this reason, a five-point performance from the previous year remains his career high.