Friday, June 20, 2008


June 15th represented the first day college coaches could call prospects of the class of 2010. Since that day, the phone of Taran Buie has had Coaches Calling Early and Often (NBE Basketball Report) to express their interest.

Buie, a 6-foot guard out of Bishop Maginn High School in Albany (NY) and standout for the City Rocks AAU program, is a name that has not generated a lot of attention nationally in the media to date. However, judging by the coaches that have reached out to him the first chance they were allowed to, college coaches are VERY aware of his talents.

“This week I’ve talked to Boston College, Notre Dame, Clemson, Rutgers, Cincinnati, Penn State, Miami, Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech, Virginia, Georgia Tech, Syracuse, Florida, Xavier, West Virginia, Marquette, and Maryland,” Taran Buie relayed to the NBE Basketball Report, doing the best he could to recall all of the coaches that have placed calls to him this week.

“He is a great kid,” City Rocks Vice President Carmen Maciariello stated. “Respectful and hardworking. His personality is a big attribute. He makes a difference on the floor not only in the scoring column but in the hustle categories as well. Deflections, loose balls, charges, rotations etc.,” Maciariello, a former standout at Siena college, said in describing Taran’s impact on the floor.

Maciariello continued to note how well-rounded Buie is off the court, too. “He is a no-brainer for the high majors because he gets it done in the classroom as well!” It was a sentiment echoed by Bishop Maginn coach Rich Hurley as well, “Taran carries a B+ average in the classroom and his involved in many school activities aside from basketball.”

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008


June 11, 2008

Head Coach: Mike Brey
2006-2007 Record: 25-8 (14-4 Big East) NCAA Tournament 2nd Round

Returning Players:
Zach Hillesland, Senior (Forward)
Luke Zeller, Senior (Big Forward)
Ryan Ayers, Senior (Small Forward)
Kyle McAlarney, Senior (Guard)
Jonathan Peoples, Junior (Guard)
Luke Harangody, Junior (Forward/Center)
Tory Jackson, Junior (Point Guard)
Carlton Scott, Sophomore (Forward)
Tyrone Nash, Sophomore (Forward)
Ty Proffitt, Sophomore (Guard)
Tim Ambromaitis, Sophomore (Forward)

Incoming Players:
Ben Hansbrough, Junior*
Scott Martin, Sophomore*

Graduated Players:
Rob Kurz, Senior (Power Forward)

*must sit out 2008-2009 season after transferring from another Division 1-A school

Open Items/Issues:
It has been a pretty docile spring around the Notre Dame program. Mike Brey added a couple of incoming transfers in Ben Hansbrough from Mississippi State and Scott Martin from Purdue, but there will be no new faces in the 2008-2009 line-up.

The Irish will get a head start on their season with a summer trip to Ireland as a team. It is a great team-building experience and with 11 players returning from last year's roster, it should create tremendous chemistry for a team that already displayed it last season.

For the second consecutve year, the Big East Blogger missed badly on his pre-season prediction for Notre Dame. Last year, led by Big East Player of the Year Luke Harangody, the Irish won 14 conference games and advanced to round 2 of the NCAA Tournament. Returning four starters and 11 of their 12 players overall, the Irish will hope to build upon that suceess this coming season.

The broad shoulders or Harangody will once again lay the foundation for the Irish squad. Harangody is a walking double-double with the ability for a 25-point, 14-rebound performance on a consistent basis. He has great fundamental footwork and positioning in the post to score with either hand and to gobble up rebounds. He will miss his sidekick, the underrated and under-appreciated Rob Kurz, but Zach Hillesland could move into a similar role and Luke Zeller also returns to stretch the defense to give Harangody room in the paint. Sophomore forwards Tyrone Nash and Carleton Scott return looking for bigger roles this coming season, getting one of those two into a role comfortable for them will help in a big way.

The backcourt is in good hands with junior point guard Tory Jackson and senior sniper Kyle McAlarney. Jackson is tremendously quick with the ball and his hands on defense and has a nose for the ball. McAlarney can fill it up from three-point range as well as anyone in the country. On the wing, Ryan Ayers returns with his featherly jump shot, the only thing holding him back is his featherly frame, but he is a player that makes the right plays. Providing solid guard depth, again, is Jonathan Peoples.

There really is not a whole lot new with the Irish. They have an experienced 7-man rotation of all juniors and seniors, so getting some progress out of their sophomore class is very important. The Irish were 9-0 at home in the Big East last year and have won 18 in a row at the Joyce Center in conference play, dating back to February 25, 2006 when Marquette beat them 80-72. Their home dominance should continue this season and winning enough on the road will keep them fighting for position among the top four in the conference and a very good NCAA seed in 2008-2009.

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