Notre Dame Football, Basketball News and Nuggets

-Andy Katz on ESPN.com today suggested  he national coach of the year in college basketball should come from the BIG EAST – and UConn’s Jim Calhoun, Notre Dame’s Mike Brey, Louisville’s Rick Pitino and Steve Lavin of St. John’s as names that should be finalists.

-My vote is Lav all the way! Gotta be the hair.

-Jay Bilas on ESPN.com listed Notre Dame’s Ben Hansbrough as one of his“most-respected players” for this season, saying, “A worker who keeps his head down and keeps coming at you, Hansbrough has quietly joined the front-runners for Big East Player of the Year. He is skilled, strong willed, tenacious and never gives in to fatigue. He just keeps running and keeps competing. He scores and takes big shots, but he is also willing to trail Connecticut’s Kemba Walker around for 40 minutes. Hansbrough does the tough stuff, prepares like a pro and does it all without complaining.”

-And might I add, he’s really “grindy,” just like his brother

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Hansbrough Big East Player of the Year? Abromaitis in NBA Mock Drafts?

Ben Hansbrough

It seems like the #7 Fighting Irish might be the least hyped top ten team of all time. Of course, when you pay attention to some Mike Brey quotes and NBA Draftniks’ work, perhaps that’s changing.

Ben Hansbrough for Big East player of the year? His name certainly has to be in the discussion, but obviously the favorite UConn’s Kemba Walker, and you’d have to place Pittburgh’s Ashton Gibbs and Brad Wanamaker well ahead of Hansbrough.

What about national college basketball player of the year, an award his brother won two seasons ago? (Yeah, we don’t think so either, but) Notre Dame coach Mike Brey started the drums beating for his team’s emotional leader after Hansbrough scored 25 points despite a tough start to lead No. 9 Notre Dame to a 76-69 win over Rutgers on Sunday at Purcell Pavilion.

“When you step back a bit, look at this, and get away from the preseason hype machine, certainly he is a Big East player of the year candidate as well as national player of the year,” Brey said.

“Flat out. I mean, we are in the Top Ten and he has driven us into that position and we are in the hunt for the league title. It is starting to be really evaluated. Some people say ‘Let’s see what he does next game.’ Well, he did it again.”

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