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Irish Insights

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Notre Dame basketball: Final push for playing time

SOUTH BEND – Notre Dame freshman V.J. Beachem will use the next month to convince coach Mike Brey he can contribute to the Irish this season.

The Irish have exhibition games on Oct. 28 against Indianapolis and Nov. 1 against Tusculum before they start the season against Miami (Ohio) at home on Nov. 8.

Brey said during Wednesday's media day that he and the coaching staff will start figuring out which freshmen will play over the next month.

And Beachem, the former New Haven star, has impressed Brey so far.

"God, he's really coming," Brey said. "He's got great length, shoots that ball, getting the feel. I want him to talk a little bit more and get more vocal. We have got a heck of battle for minutes on the perimeter. When you talk about our three returning starters (Eric Atkins, Jerian Grant and Pat Connaughton), (freshman) Demetrius Jackson then you go into (sophomore Cameron Bedstead), V.J., (freshman) Steve Vasturia has been rock solid. You've always heard me say, he knows how to play. He plays older than he is. We've got a lot of guys fighting for minutes. We have a chance, especially starting Monday, to really analyze up through the second exhibition game to make decisions."

Beachem said he has not had any discussions with Brey on if he will play this year or if he will be on a five-year plan at Notre Dame.

But the forward has enjoyed the competition at practice to try to prove he can play this season.

"They've been pretty good," Beachem said. "I love the competition. I'm trying to bring it hard every day, no matter what. I love it, and I think it is going to be great for our team in the long run."

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