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Irish Insights

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Irish look to continue home dominance

Notre Dame will tip off against Louisville shortly in Purcell Pavilion in a matchup of Top 25 teams.

And the No. 8 Irish (19-4, 8-3 Big East) can only hope that their recent history at home against the No. 16 Cardinals (18-5, 7-3) continues tonight.

Notre Dame has won the last two home games against Louisville, blowing out the Cardinals 90-57 during the 2009 season and notching a 78-62 victory in 2007.

Those victories are the only two for Notre Dame in the last 13 games in the series.

The Irish are also looking to make history tonight as a win would put Notre Dame at 20 victories at the earliest point in a season in the program's history. It would also be the fifth straight year the Irish have reached 20 wins.

Notre Dame is also trying to stay on target of its goal of a possible Big East regular-season title. The Irish trail Pittsburgh by two in the loss column, and they need to defeat the Cardinals tonight to keep second place in the conference to themselves.

Tonight's game also marks when the reversal of Notre Dame's fortunes occurred.

Last year, Notre Dame traveled to Louisville in February for its first road game without start forward Luke Harangody.

The Irish pushed the Cardinals to double overtime before falling 91-89.

But since that game, Notre Dame has gone 25-6, and the Irish enter tonight's game 14-0 at home and looking like a lock for a high seed in the NCAA tournament.

"It's interesting," coach Mike Brey said, "since the last Louisville game what this nucleus has done."

And they should be able to carry on what they started after the loss to Louisville last year tonight.

The Cardinals will have their leading scorer, Preston Knowles, back in the lineup, but Notre Dame has proven too much for most inside Purcell.

Prediction, Notre Dame wins 85-79.

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