ND, Virginia meet in ACC quarters
No. 7 seed Notre Dame (20-12, 11-10) vs. No. 2 seed Virginia (23-7, 15-5)
Atlantic Coast Conference Tourney Quarterfinals, Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, North Carolina; Thursday, 6 p.m. EDT
BOTTOM LINE: A spot in the ACC semifinals is on the line as Notre Dame and Virginia prepare to face off. The only meeting between the teams this season came on Feb. 11, when the Cavaliers shot 37.3 percent from the field while limiting Notre Dame to just 32.8 percent on the way to a one-point victory.
VETERAN PRESENCE: Senior leadership could play a big role in the outcome of this game. Mamadi Diakite, Braxton Key and Jay Huff have combined to score 55 percent of Virginia’s points this season and 63 percent of the team’s points over its last five games. For Notre Dame, John Mooney, Prentiss Hubb, T.J. Gibbs and Juwan Durham have combined to account for 66 percent of all Notre Dame scoring, including 69 percent of the team’s points over its last five games.
CREATING OFFENSE: Hubb has either made or assisted on 47 percent of all Notre Dame field goals over the last three games. The sophomore guard has 15 field goals and 21 assists in those games.
ASSIST-TO-FG RATIO: The Fighting Irish have recently used assists to create buckets more often than the Cavs. Virginia has 28 assists on 58 field goals (48.3 percent) across its previous three outings while Notre Dame has assists on 47 of 77 field goals (61 percent) during its past three games.
BALL SECURITY: The diligent Notre Dame offense has turned the ball over on 14.3 percent of its possessions, the second-best mark in Division I. 20.2 percent of all Virginia possessions have resulted in a turnover (the Cavaliers are ranked 266th, nationally).