There is no easing into Big East play for the Notre Dame mens basketball team.
The No. 15 Irish (11-1) jump right into the grind of conference play with three top-10 opponents, starting with todays 7 p.m. tip-off in Purcell Pavilion against No. 9 Georgetown (11-1).
Notre Dame travels to No. 5 Syracuse on Saturday, and it completes the trifecta Tuesday with a home game against No. 4 Connecticut, which fell 78-63 to No. 6 Pittsburgh on Monday.
I dont know if anybody has ever started league play off like that. We certainly havent, Irish coach Mike Brey said. When you have an 18-game league schedule, I dont know how much you can concentrate on the first week or look at this stretch.
Its try to methodically work your way through it. One-game win streaks are things to celebrate in our league.
Georgetown enters tonights game as the second-best shooting team in the country, hitting 52.5 percent. The Hoyas are led by senior guard Austin Freeman (18.9 points per game). Senior Chris Wright and junior Jason Clark each average 13.7 points.
There is not a team playing better than Georgetown in the country right now, Brey said. Theyre in an unbelievable rhythm.
Ive been impressed with their transition. One reason they are shooting a high percentage is they are getting a lot of easy buckets in transition. They are really running more than Ive seen them run before. That is a concern, taking away easy buckets.
Notre Dames biggest advantage is that the offense can come from multiple players.
Four starters average double digits in scoring led by Tim Abromaitis 16.1 points per game. Ben Hansbrough averages 15.3 points; Carleton Scott averages 12.8; and Tyrone Nash averages 10.2. Scott Martin, who also starts, averages 9.6 points.
We are certainly very unselfish, Brey said. We know what a good shot is for us, and we can play a couple of different tempos. Weve certainly run, and weve played well in the half court. I would use the same phrase unselfish defensively. A group that rotates and helps each other.