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Men’s Basketball Travels to Notre Dame

GEORGIA TECH (10-14, 3-10 ACC) vs. NOTRE DAME (8-16, 3-10 ACC)

Wednesday, February 14, 2024 | 7 p.m. EST | South Bend, Ind. | Purcell Pavilion

THE FLATS – Looking to even the season series with Notre Dame and get in the winning column for February, Georgia Tech travels to face the Fighting Irish at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Purcell Pavilion.

Tech (10-14, 3-10 ACC) remained winless in the month of February after falling late at Louisville, 79-67, Saturday. The Jackets also lost 82-76 at NC State and 80-51 at home to Wake Forest since knocking off No. 3 North Carolina to close out the month of January. The Yellow Jackets, who have also defeated Duke and Clemson in conference play, have lost six of their last seven games and 11 of their last 13.

Notre Dame (8-16, 3-10 ACC) is in a similar place, having lost nine of its last 11. The Fighting Irish defeated Tech in the teams’ first meeting on Jan. 9, but then lost seven in a row before defeating Virginia Tech at home, 74-66, Saturday.

Wednesday’s game will be televised live on the ACC Network, with a live stream available on the ESPN app. Radio coverage is on the Georgia Tech Sports Network by Legends Sports and flagship station 680 the Fan (680 AM/93.7 FM). The Tech broadcast is also available on SiriusXM channel 383 and the SiriusXM app.

THE TIP-OFF

  • Georgia Tech’s three ACC wins have come against the ACC’s three highest-ranked teams in the NCAA’s NET rankings – North Carolina (10), Duke (20) and Clemson (29).
  • Nine of Georgia Tech’s 13 ACC games have been decided by single digits. Sixteen of Tech’s 24 games overall this season have been decided by fewer than 10 points, which is tied for third-most in Division I (Tech is 8-8 in those games). Nine of those by five points or fewer.
  • Tech is 2-7 in true road games this season, and four of its seven remaining games are on the road.
  • Tech has not won at Purcell Pavilion since the Fighting Irish joined the ACC.
  • Three of the last five meetings between Tech and Notre Dame have been decided in overtime.
  • Tech is 6-10 against Quad 1 and Quad 2 teams this season, with Quad 1 wins over Duke, Clemson and North Carolina and Quad 2 wins over Mississippi State, Penn State and Massachusetts. The Jackets have four Quad 1 and zero Quad 2 opponents remaining on its schedule (Notre Dame is a Quad 3 opportunity). Tech was 3-14 last season against Quad 1/2 foes.
  • Miles Kelly (14.8 ppg) leads three Yellow Jackets averaging in double figures this season, including freshman forward Baye Ndongo (11.9) and junior guard Kowacie Reeves, Jr. (10.5). Freshman point guard Naithan George is just under 10 at 9.8 points per game, but averages 10.7 in ACC games.
  • Kelly is now 35 points away from reaching 1,000 for his career. He would become the 48th player in Tech history to reach that milestone.
  • Tech has started two freshmen – Baye Ndongo and point guard Naithan George – in its last 20 games. The Jackets have not had two freshmen in its regular starting lineup since the 2018-19 season (Michael Devoe, Khalid Moore), and have not had a freshman regularly start at point guard since Jose Alvarado in 2017-18.
  • Either Ndongo or George has led Tech in scoring in nine of Tech’s last 14 games, and in seven of 11 ACC games. They have accounted for nearly a third (32.3 percent) of Tech’s points in ACC games.
  • Tech’s point guard tandem of Naithan George and Kyle Sturdivant has averaged 7.1 assists per game combined, 8.6 in ACC games. Their assist/turnover ratio is 2.38-to-1 combined overall, 3.03-to-1 in conference games. Both players rank among the nation’s top 57 players in assist rate (assists divided by the field goals made by the player’s teammates while he is on the court) according to KenPom.com.
  • Naithan George is the first Tech freshman since Iman Shumpert in 2008-09 to collect 100 assists in a season, surpassing the century mark last game to get to 103 for this season. He is the first freshman since Javaris Crittenton in 2006-07 to average more than five assists per game.
  • Seven Tech players have scored at least 20 points in a game this season – Naithan George, Kyle Sturdivant, Deebo Coleman, Tafara Gapare, Kowacie Reeves, Jr., Baye Ndongo and Miles Kelly. It is only the second time that as many as seven different Yellow Jackets have scored 20-plus in a game during a season (2007-08).

Head coach Damon Stoudamire on Monday's ACC Coaches Zoom call

SERIES VS. NOTRE DAME

  • Notre Dame has won eight of the last 10 meetings and lead 16-13 in the all-time series. Georgia Tech’s only wins came by an 82-80 score on Feb. 6, 2021 and a 70-68 decision on Feb. 8, 2023, both at McCamish Pavilion.
  • The Fighting Irish won the teams’ initial meeting in 2023-24, 75-68 in overtime on Jan. 9 in Atlanta.
  • Since Notre Dame joined the ACC, the teams have split their regular season series five times, and the Fighting Irish have swept the Yellow Jackets three times. Tech has yet to sweep the Irish.
  • Notre Dame is one of two permanent home-and-away opponents for Tech in the ACC. However, the teams did not play in South Bend during the 2020-21 season when the game was canceled due to COVID-19.
  • The Yellow Jackets are 7-14 against Notre Dame since the Fighting Irish joined the ACC. The first 17 meetings were decided by a total of 88 points, and the widest margin of victory was 10 points by Notre Dame on Feb. 10, 2019 before the Fighting Irish scored a 34-point win (90-56) on Feb. 26 2022 in South Bend.
  • The teams have played to overtime five times, three of those coming in the last five meetings.
  • At McCamish Pavilion, Tech is 7-4 against the Irish (minus one 2017 win vacated by the NCAA), and the games have been decided by a total of 35 points. Tech won all three of the teams’ meetings at the Jackets’ former home court in Alexander Memorial Coliseum.
  • Notre Dame has won all nine meetings at South Bend since the Fighting Irish became a member of the ACC. Tech’s last win at Notre Dame occurred Feb. 24, 1990, a Yellow Jacket team that won the ACC Championship and reached the Final Four behind the Lethal Weapon 3 combination of Kenny Anderson, Dennis Scott and Brian Oliver, who combined for 64 of the Jackets’ points in that 88-80 overtime victory.
  • Tech is 2-11 in games played in South Bend, and 1-10 in Purcell Pavilion.
  • The Yellow Jackets won five straight meetings between the two teams from 1972 through Tech’s 74-69 victory in McCamish Pavilion on Jan. 11, 2014, the team’s first meeting as ACC foes.

Miles Kelly needs 35 points to reach 1,000 for his career. (photo by Danny Karnik)

 

TEAM TRENDS

  • Tech was whistled for a season-high 28 fouls at Louisville (two players – Baye Ndongo and Tyzhaun Claude – fouled out) and surrendered a season-high 31 points at the free throw line.
  • Tech has made 75 percent of its free throws (108-of-144) in its last five games.
  • Tech players other than Miles Kelly hit 11-of-43 shots from the floor at Louisville, and the Jackets finished the game at 34.9 percent, the 10th time this season they have failed to shoot 40 percent. Tech has shot 31.7 percent in its last two games combined.
  • At least nine players have seen the court in 23 of Tech’s first 24 games (only eight played against Hawai’i). Eight players average more than 16 minutes per game in ACC games.
  • Tech ranks No. 94 nationally in use of its bench, 35.1 percent of the minutes compared to a national average of 31.2 percent. The Jackets rank No. 2 in the ACC and No. 78 nationally in bench scoring (24.1 points per game). Tech’s reserves outscored Louisville 26-16.
  • Miles Kelly and Kowacie Reeves, Jr., remain the only Tech players to start every game this season.

PLAYER HIGHLIGHTS

  • One game after being held scoreless against Wake Forest, Miles Kelly scored a career-high 36 points at Louisville. His 11 field goals (in 20 attempts) were also a career high, and his eight free throws (in 10 attempts) matched his personal best.
  • Kelly’s 36 points were the most by an ACC player this season and most for a Tech player since Michael Devoe tallied 37 in a win at Georgia in 2017. It was Kelly’s second career 30-point game (he scored 30 last Feb. 28 at Syracuse).
  • Kelly’s 164 career three-point field goals rank 14th in Tech program history. He has made more than his six against Louisville just twice in his career (seven vs. Notre Dame on Jan. 9 of this season and Syracuse on Feb. 28 of last season).
  • Kyle Sturdivant has 40 points to go to reach 900, and three three-point field goals to reach 100.
  • Carter Murphy, a grad transfer from Air Force, played a season-high 21 minutes against Louisville and scored a season-high eight points, including a pair of threes.
  • Freshman point guard Naithan George has reached double digits in points seven times in Tech’s last nine games after doing so only twice in his first 12 games.
  • George ranks No. 2 in the ACC in assist average (5.8 per game) and No. 1 assist-turnover ratio (3.00-1) in conference games.
  • Freshman Baye Ndongo ranks No. 4 nationally among freshmen in rebound average (8.0 per game) and No. 2 in field goal percentage (57.7).
  • Either Ndongo or George has led Tech in scoring in nine of its last 14 games. Ndongo has led the Jackets in points in eight games.
  • Kyle Sturdivant is 16-for-17 from the free throw line over Tech’s last eight games. He leads the Jackets at 87.8 percent from the line this season, 89.7 percent (26-of-29) in ACC play.
  • In Tech’s last eight games, Sturdivant averaged 10.7 points and hit 42.6 percent (28-of-66) from the floor, 41.9 percent (14-of-34) from three-point range, 16-of-17 from the free throw line, 17 assists/7 turnovers
  • Tyzhaun Claude has averaged 5.9 points and 5.9 rebounds over Tech’s last eight games, hitting 13-of-23 from the floor and 21-of-28 from the foul line. He has averaged 23 minutes.
  • Claude is 23-of-30 (76.7 pct.) from the free throw line over Tech’s last nine games.
  • Kowacie Reeves, Jr., has hit a team-best 43.9 percent from three-point range in ACC games. He shot just 19 percent from three-point range in SEC games last year at Florida.

Baye Ndongo ranks No. 2 among freshmen nationally in field goal percentage, No. 4 in rebound average. (photo by Danny Karnik)

 


Alexander-Tharpe Fund

The Alexander-Tharpe Fund is the fundraising arm of Georgia Tech athletics, providing scholarship, operations and facilities support for Tech’s 400-plus student-athletes. Be a part of the development of Yellow Jackets that thrive academically at the Institute and compete for championships at the highest levels of college athletics by supporting the Annual Athletic Scholarship Fund, which directly provides scholarships for Georgia Tech student-athletes. To learn more about supporting the Yellow Jackets, visit atfund.org.

ABOUT GEORGIA TECH MEN’S BASKETBALL

Georgia Tech’s men’s basketball team is in its first year under head coach Damon Stoudamire. Tech has been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference since 1979, won four ACC Championships (1985, 1990, 1993, 2021), played in the NCAA Tournament 17 times and played in two Final Fours (1990, 2004). Connect with Georgia Tech Men’s Basketball on social media by liking their Facebook Page, or following on Twitter (@GTMBB) and Instagram. For more information on Tech basketball, visit Ramblinwreck.com.

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