Notre Dame basketball coach Micah Shrewsberry has talked a lot about how this team is still building and growing. However, in a 63-59 loss to Boston College, it’s hard to see where the growth has been.
There are still some built-in excuses for the first-year head coach, including the fact that he simply doesn’t have enough bodies to play 40 minutes of basketball against power conference teams.
At one point on Monday night, the Irish led the Eagles 31-19 and looked like they were about to cruise to a surprisingly easy ACC victory. But nothing is easy with this Notre Dame basketball team and as Shrewsberry and the team is learning, holding onto leads is quite a bit more difficult when you can’t score.
The turning point
Far too often, the turning point has been halftime. And it was again on Monday night. The Irish went into the break with a lead, but came out of the locker room playing truly terrible basketball. In the first 9 minutes after half, the Notre Dame basketball team went 3–9 from the field and turned it over 6 times.
Burton continues to be the best player on the Irish by a wide margin. For long periods of the game, he put the team on his back and finished with 5 rebounds and 3 assists.
The Boston College guard led all scorers on Monday night with 20 points thanks to 8-for-10 shooting (1-for-1 from 3-point land), 3 rebounds and 3 assists.
Yes, the freshman gets a spot in both categories thanks to his performance on Monday. Had he been just a little better, the Notre Dame basketball team likely beats the Eagles. In the second half, he went just 1-for-5 from the field and turned the ball over 7 times in the game.
Claudell Harris Jr.
There was no player on either team that had a worse shooting night than Claudell Harris, who was just 1-for-13 from the field. That included 0-for-3 from behind the arc. He scored 5 points thanks to three free throws and that one bucket but you’ve got to wonder why he kept shooting when he was that off. The performance ended 9 straight games of scoring double digit points for the BC player.
Notre Dame basketball bottom line
Shrewsberry’s squad has lost four of its last five, but they’ve been in every single game. There obviously is a learning curve with this team. But you’d like to see that they are indeed learning at some point.
Next up for Notre Dame basketball
Shrewsberry’s squad gets one more long break before entering into the real meatgrinder of the schedule. They have a full week off before taking on the Miami Hurricanes for the second time this season.