Commitment Roundup

The four players in the Notre Dame basketball team's 2008-09 signing class, are currently putting together special senior seasons.

The four have combined for a 45-5 record, and two have teams ranked in the ESPN Rise national top-25.

Irish Eyes caught up with Mike Broghammer, Joey Brooks, Jack Cooley and Tom Knight about their respective seasons. All four are planning to be back in South Bend for the Notre Dame-Connecticut game on January 24th.

Broghammer: The 6-foot-9, 220-pound power forward out of Hopkins Senior High in Minnetonka, Minn., has helped his team get off to an 8-0 start.

Broghammer is averaging 10 points and eight rebounds per game while sharing the basketball with three other Division-I recruits. The Royals are currently ranked 24th in the nation.

"A lot of the games we've played have been blowouts, so there hasn't been much of a chance to play a lot of minutes so far," Broghammer explained.

Playing with teammates like Trent Lockett (Arizona State), Raymond Cowels (Santa Clara) and Royce White (Minnesota) over the years, Broghammer has never had to be the go-to guy in his prep career. With the way the Irish like to play, that should suit him well on the next level.

"It's not that hard for me," Broghammer said. "It's something I've always been good at, sharing the ball.

"It's kind of frustrating sometimes because it never finds its way back, but I can deal with it as long as we are playing well and winning games, I can deal with the lower stats."

Brooks: Ranked 13th in the nation, the 6-foot-5, 215-pound swingman and his Strake Jesuit (Houston) High teammates are cruising through the season at 20-0.

"It's chemistry," Brooks stated. He's leading the way, averaging 22 points, nine rebounds and five assists per contest. "We've been playing with each other for a long time. Like (Notre Dame) coach (Mike) Brey says all the time, we're a veteran group.

"A bunch of us were on varsity as sophomores, but it goes back to sixth grade. Some of us guys have been playing together since 5th, 6th grade."

Highlighting the season thus far for Brooks is winning the prestigious HISD Tournament, formerly known as the Houston Jaycees Tournament. Players like Emeka Okafor and Daniel Gibson have played in this tournament, and Brooks took home the MVP honors this year after scoring 27 points in the title game. In another game this season, Brooks poured in 30 points and grabbed 18 rebounds against Madison High and star point guard Tommy Mason-Griffin, a five-star Oklahoma signee.

"I've been playing really well, really, really well," Brooks said.

He hopes to keep it up, as Jesuit is off to a 2-0 start in district play.

"We're trying to get better everyday which is a big task."

Cooley: Because of scheduling conflicts, Cooley and his Glenbrook South (Glenview, Ill.) teammates didn't play their first home game of the season until this week.

In the stands, Cooley's parents made sure to invite anyone and everyone, for it was a special day.

"I was honored for scoring my 1,000th career point," the 6-foot-8, 210-pound forward said. He is averaging 22 points per game on the year, and the team is 9-5.

"It felt really good. Nobody told me about it. I had no idea about it. It was our home opener yesterday, and my Dad invited my whole family to watch, and everyone knew about it but me.

"All of a sudden, they start announcing only five players in school history have scored 1,000 points, and the new inductee to this famous group is Jack Cooley. I was all surprised, and I got a basketball and it said when I got my 1,000th point and everything."

Cooley is excited because his team has played most of the season without their second best player, and now they're running full strength. In his absence, Cooley had one 32-point effort, and another night where he went for 20 points, 18 rebounds and 15 blocks.

Knight: Since signing his letter-of-intent, the 6-foot-9, 245-pound power forward from Dirigo High, feels that every player in the state of Maine is gunning for him.

"They want to kind of knock me off my block," Knight said.

Nobody's done it yet.

Knight is averaging 22 points and 10 rebounds per game, leading Dirigo to an 8-0 record.

"I feel really good that people are trying their best to come after me."

Knight saved his best performance for the biggest game of the young season. Against Wiscasett, the second best team in the conference, Knight netted 37 points and grabbed 25 boards.

"Everything was falling, and I was getting to the rim good, and I was just feeling good that day," Knight explained. "I was just focused on the game and I knew it was a big game we needed to win.

"The 25 rebounds kind of shocked me."

It's doubtful anybody on the Irish staff is shocked about the play of their four signees. Top Stories