Center Garrick ShermanAppeared to work his way back into Brey's good graces in time for the Big East Tournament, starring vs. Louisville off the bench last week (25 minutes, 7 of 9 shooting) after struggling mightily in previous outings vs. St. John's, Marquette, and Pittsburgh…Sherman showed well vs. Cincinnati at home (five boards in 14 minutes) as well as the loss at Providence (5 of 9 shooting in 12 minutes with 11 points), in addition to a quality overtime game vs. DePaul (3 of 5 shooting for 7 points, 4 boards, 14 minutes)…
Skilled with both hands in the post and displaying great footwork on the low block, Sherman struggles when opponents are able to bully him chest to chest; he conversely shines when his myriad post fakes draw the defender off balance…A strong opening possession or two off the bench usually indicates success is afoot, but when he struggles early, his confidence -- and interest in the proceedings -- seems to wane.
Upcoming Matchups: Did not play vs. Rutgers in mid-January and probably shouldn't' have vs. Marquette two weeks ago, logging 19 minutes, missing all five of his field goals, and was victimized by both Golden Eagles big men Chris Otule and Davante Gardner on the defensive end…Sherman starred in two matchups vs. Louisville, scoring 17 points on 7 of 10 shooting with six boards in 22 overtime minutes in a 104-101 Irish win, then producing 14 points (7 of 9) with four boards in the team's loss last Saturday.
Power Forward Zach AugusteThe team's most improved player since early February, Auguste brings defensive length, both as a weak side shot blocker and in ball pressure, and energy on both ends to the lineup…Has emerged as the team's second-best rebounder behind Cooley, securing 35 in his last 97 floor minutes…Has contributed a game with three blocks (Providence in 13 minutes) and three steals (Marquette, 21 minutes) since regular immersion in the rotation…
A bit out of control offensively at times, Auguste has improved in his effort for low-post position and is a quality finisher when given the opportunity…His defensive help, presence on the glass, and offensive energy will determine if Notre Dame wins one game or two-plus in this week's tournament.
Upcoming Matchups: Did not play vs. Rutgers in mid-January…Had his best career outing vs. Marquette two weeks ago, scoring 15 points on 7 of 9 shooting in 21 minutes while grabbing five boards with three steals…Combined to score 10 points (4 of 9 shooting) in 53 minutes vs. Louisville during the season split, his contributions in the overtime sessions of Notre Dame's 104-101 invaluable on both ends…Needs defensive seasoning to matchup with Cardinals power forward Chane Behanan, far and away the worst remaining matchup on the board for the true freshman Auguste.
Swingman Cam BiedscheidReturns from a one-game suspension (fighting) in need of a confidence boost after hitting just five of his last 22 shots, including 2 of 15 from beyond the arc…The latter stat is troubling as he's the team's best pure shooter and is this season cast in the role of spot-up jump shooter as a lanky freshman….Struggles to defend crafty, veteran foes, especially off the ball…Can nonetheless turn a game around with his outside shot as he did vs. both Villanova (5 of 7 from long range) and Louisville (a clutch 2 of 4) earlier this season…A confident player after a standout high school career, Biedscheid is prone to a bit of trash talk on the court, a potential issue going forward as he'll be a marked man following his fight vs. St. John's forward Sir'Dominic Porter…
A tremendous free throw shooter that unfortunately doesn't get to the line enough (one attempt in his last five games; 17 of 20 in Big East play) Biedscheid's attitude is necessary on a passive Irish team, but he needs to play better defense and knock down the open shot to backup his chatter.
Upcoming Matchups: Did not score vs. Rutgers in 11 minutes while struggling defensively….Played the role of hero in the early February thriller over Louisville, hitting a three-pointer to send the game into overtime No. 2 while scoring 14 points in a career-high 50 minutes…Will struggle vs. Cardinals forward Luke Hancock if matched up again…Did not shoot well at Marquette, finishing 2 of 8 in 20 minutes including 1 of 6 from beyond the arc.
Forward Austin BurgettMade his relevant game debut vs. Louisville in the season finale and showed well over 14 minutes with two points, two assists (and two other potential assists blown) while knocking down a pair of pressure free throws in the second half…The latter notation indicates Burgett isn't afraid of competition as the pari were the only meaningful free throws he attempted and the first in any game since early December.
Burgett's only field goal this season occurred in the second game of the season, a field goal vs. Monmouth…He's unlikely to play with Biedscheid back in the fold, but Burgett can help facilitate the offense for a few possessions in relief of Connaughton/Biedscheid if both continue to struggle.