Seton Hall entertains Notre Dame at the Prudential Center with an 8 p.m. tip off. The basic tempo free ‘math’ and a few other notes.
Notre Dame (4-3)
Pace – 62 possessions
Offensive efficiency 100
Defensive efficiency 100
Efficiency margin 0
Seton Hall (4-3)
Pace- 67 possessions
Offensive efficiency 103
Defensive efficiency 102
Efficiency margin +1
The Hall plays at just a slightly faster tempo. That 62 possession pace of Notre Dame is more 'walk it up' though they will break if a great opportunity presents itself.
Notre Dame does not turn the ball over. Their TO rate in Big East play is a healthy 18%. Seton Hall, on the other hand, forces opponents into a 22% turnover percentage. Something has to give and it will be interesting to see the Hall’s defensive plan and if forcing turnovers is a primary objective.
Last week, covered the Notre Dame loss at Rutgers and was impressed how they maintained poise and stayed within striking distance in a tough environment. Several times Rutgers threatened to pull away but with two minutes left it was a two possession contest. Irish coach Mike Brey laments not having that breakout scorer who can drop 25-30 on a team. Following Tim Abromatis’ season ending injury, ND has done a nice job adjusting and remaining competitive.
In Big East play they have three double figure scorers: Sophomore guard Eric Atkins (11 PPG), swingman Jerian Grant (12.7) and junior forward Jack Cooley (12.9 PPG). In the win over Syracuse, Cooley set the pace with 17 points. Again, neither can be expected to take over and drop thirty something points. All, however, command respect by opposing defenses.
Seton Hall, they have your attention. Despite recent losses by the Pirates and ND’s upset of top ranked Syracuse, they make the trip from South Bend knowing a challenge awaits at the Rock. Following the Rutgers game, spoke with ND assistant Anthony Solomon. Among the recent Seton Hall tapes he broke down were the UCONN and South Florida games. He was impressed with the Hall, even in the loss at USF. Solomon added without getting into specifics, that Seton Hall, “is a team that gives us great concern.”