March 11, 2009 // Notre Dame Basketball

Notre Dame’s Bubble Officially Burst

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A very disappointing basketball season ended Wednesday night with yet another very disappointing loss. Notre Dame fell to West Virginia in the 2nd round of the Big East Tournament to fall to 18-14 on the season thus officially bursting their bubble. The Irish had slim tournament hopes before the Big East Tourney began, but a win tonight would have at least put the Irish at 19-13 overall and 9-10 in the Big East. An upset win tomorrow would have made the Irish 20-13 and 10-10 in the Big East which would have at least put them back into the conversation.

None of that really matters now that they fell 74-62 to West Virginia.  Notre Dame got off to an absolutely dreadfull start and could never fully recover.  They made a few runs in the second half, but could never cut the score to anything less than 8 points after being down by as many as 20.   The Mountaineers used some suffocating defense and uncharacteristically hot 3-point shooting to build their lead and then made clutch shots after each Irish run.

Luke Harangody finished with 27 points and 8 rebounds, but did most of his damage in the second half once the Irish trailed.  Notre Dame couldn’t find a way to get the ball down low to Harangody in the first half while West Virginia built a 36-18 halftime lead.  Kyle McAlarney chipped in 17 points, but struggled to find open looks most of the night.  Tyrone Nash provided the only real production off the bench and he finished with just 1 point (the only bench points scored by Notre Dame) to go along with his 7 rebounds and 2 assists.

The NIT looks likely for Notre Dame at this point, but after reaching as high as #7 in the country this year, the Irish will be asking themselves what exactly went wrong this year for a while.

Comments to this Article

  • JC commented on March 11th, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    What went wrong?? Poor defense, we need Bobby Knight to come in and give a seminar to the coaches on defense. The UCLA game this year was another example of what went wrong playing Washington last year in the second round of the NCAA tournament. This year, the Irish were continuously shut-down by a team with good defense. All in all, not a surprising result considering the schedule. Until, a real defensive approach is taken, an offense only team is not going to get you to the final four. We need to recruit tough defensive players that deliver every game. Anybody remember Bill Hanslick?

    [Reply]

    Al Mathewson replied on April 17th, 2011 at 8:59 am

    Yeah, I remember Bill, Great Man, now runs a foundation for kids in Denver!

    [Reply]

  • dan commented on March 12th, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    This team was way too soft on defense and on the boards. I bet they get knocked out of the NIT pretty quick. Hopefully the football team will make up for it in the fall. I will always be a Notre Dame fan but I could really use something positive to cheer for.

    [Reply]

  • Chris Davlin commented on March 13th, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Mike Brey cannot coach is what is wrong. What offense are they running? Why do they not double-pick for McLarney to get open shots? What do Hillesland and Ayers doing during the game? They do not score, rebound and only turn the ball over.

    Why did they not try in the West Virginia game? Why did they not try to get the ball to Harangody on the blocks in the West Virginia game? Why was Mike Brey smiling and laughing when they were down 20 in the first half? What offense were they trying to run in the first half?

    What is going on?

    [Reply]

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