Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Interview with ND Blogger Black and Green of Black and Green Irish Men's Basketball Report

Finally, I am pleased to present an interview with BlackandGreen, the publisher of the Notre Dame-centric Black and Green Irish Men's Basketball Report, on the upcoming battle between the now-#3 Wildcats and the Golden Domers...

BlackandGreen graciously agreed to answer in detail, the following questions which I e-mailed him, about what we can anticipate from Notre Dame on Wednesday evening...

VV: 1) What's the biggest difference between last year's ND team and this year's?

BlackandGreen: This year's team is more potent on offense.  Ben Hansbrough is pretty athletic and able to score in more ways than former Irish shooter Kyle McAlarneyTim Abromaitis has made a big impact and is a huge improvement over Ryan Ayers and Zach Hillesland.  Defense, however, has been a huge problem this season.  Always overlooked in the Mike Brey era, a strong effort on D has been completely lacking.

VV: 2) What's been the biggest surprise for ND this season?

BlackandGreen: Abromaitis redshirted last year and was expected to make an impact this season, but no one expected his 16.7 points per game.  Averaging 28 in the last two contests, Abro has a great shot from the perimeter (almost 50% from three), can take the ball to the rim, and gets enough rebounds to help out what is otherwise a weak Irish effort on the glass.

VV: 3) Villanova lacks a lot of size and depth in the frontcourt.  Our only true center is a freshman who plays about 15 minutes per contest, while our "four", Antonio Pena, is often subject to foul trouble.  What does mean for Luke Harangody and what can we expect?

If Harangody stays inside, he'll have a lot of success against the Nova defense.  However, he consistently falls in love his mid-range jumper and three-point shot.  If we see the kind of Gody that has taken 26 or 27 attempts in losses to Syracuse and UCONN (including a combined 2-9 from three), Villanova will roll.

VV: 4) What exactly happened between Carleton Scott and Mike Brey, with the leave of absence?

BlackandGreen: Brey has kept a really short leash on his bench this season and Scott has seen a pretty big limit on his playing time.  His dad made some disparaging comments about this to the press, a big no-no, which led to Scott's being suspended by the athletic department for a game.  Things seem to have been smoothed over, but Scott will continue to ride the pine in important moments until he learns how to score (the #1 quality for a Mike Brey player).

VV: 5) Villanova has a much deeper rotation than ND; how will that affect Brey's decision making?  We go 10 deep- sometimes 11...

BlackandGreen: It won't.  The Irish will still go 7-deep at best, with the starters playing just about every minute in the second half if the game is close.  Freshman Joey Brooks has seen a little playing time here and there, but Brey is going to play the guys he is comfortable with and face the consequences.

Thanks for your input and good luck on Wednesday!

My thanks to BlackandGreen for his time and insights into Notre Dame..  I am drafting a reply to his questions on Villanova...

Go Wildcats!

E-mail: villanova.viewpoint@yahoo.com

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