#126 Notre Dame Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #126
Conference Rank: #13 ACC
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Barring an ACC Tournament run, Notre Dame would have failed to be selected to the NCAA Tournament for the third consecutive season in 2019-20. The Irish did win 20 games and finished .500 in conference play, but the resume wasn’t impressive enough to have them on the bubble. Entering this season, Notre Dame will have to attempt to get back to that stage without arguably their three best players from a year ago. Mike Brey will have an experienced team filled with juniors and seniors, but the role players from last season will have to step up in bigger roles in 2020-21.
2019-20 Record: 20-12, 10-10
Coach: Mike Brey
Coach Record: 432-217 at Notre Dame, 531-269 overall
Key Departed Players:
John Mooney, Forward, 16.2 ppg
TJ Gibbs, Guard, 13.3 ppg
Rex Pflueger, Forward, 5.2 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Prentiss Hubb, Junior, Guard, 12.1 ppg
Dane Goodwin, Junior, Guard, 10.8 ppg
Juwan Durham, Senior, Forward, 7.8 ppg
Nate Laszewski, Junior, Forward, 7.4 ppg
Robby Carmody, Junior, Guard, 5.4 ppg
Nikola Djogo, Senior, Forward, 0.6 ppg
Key New Players:
Cormac Ryan, Junior, Guard, Transfer from Stanford
Tony Sanders, Freshman, Forward
Elijah Taylor, Freshman, Forward
Matt Zona, Freshman, Forward
Notre Dame loses their top two scorers from last season along with their long-time leader Rex Pflueger, but everyone else from the rotation is back. Prentiss Hubb is the most likely of the returners to grow into the role of star player. Hubb averaged 12.1 points, led the team with 5.1 assists, and shot 34.4% from three on 6.9 attempts per game. Dane Goodwin is also poised for a breakout campaign after a strong year off the bench as a sophomore. Goodwin was instant offense as a reserve, averaging 10.8 points while shooting 37.7% from three on 4.3 attempts per game. Hubb and Goodwin could potentially be one of the higher scoring duos in the ACC. Forwards Juwan Durham and Nate Laszewski will have to attempt to replace John Mooney’s production. Durham started 31 games, though Laszewski averaged more minutes per game, while both averaged just over seven points and four rebounds. Robby Carmody was a top-100 recruit two years ago, but hasn’t been able to stay healthy at Notre Dame, playing just 16 games over two seasons. Cormac Ryan is another former top-100 recruit who comes to South Bend as a transfer from Stanford. Ryan played in 24 games as a freshman at Stanford, starting 17, and averaged 8.7 points while shooting 31.6% from three on 6.5 attempts per game. After spending a year redshirting, Ryan should ease right into the Notre Dame system as a shooter. Mike Brey also brings in three freshmen, all of which are three-star forwards. The Irish are desperate to get back to relevancy in the NCAA. There is a lot of production to replace from last season, but there is still enough experience and potential here for Notre Dame to compete in the ACC.
Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.3 (97th in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 68.6 (159, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 42.6 (235, 10)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.4 (83, 7)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 9.7 (17, 2)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 34.5 (113, 6)
Free-Throw Percentage: 73.5 (91, 5)
Rebound Margin: -0.4 (192, 8)
Assists Per Game: 16.5 (9, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 9.8 (2, 1)