When: Sun., 2 p.m.Where: Joyce CenterTV/Radio: None, 1250 AM
The men’s basketball team travels to Notre Dame on Sunday to face the No. 20 Fighting Irish, the Bulls’ third ranked opponent on the road this season.
USF lost 69-50 to then-No.14 Connecticut on Jan. 2 in its first Big East game of the season.
Five days later, the Bulls fell 69-48 to then-No.10 Pittsburgh.
USF is coming off a 69-58 road loss to previously-ranked West Virginia (now receiving votes) on Wednesday.
The Bulls trailed 16-4 early in the first half to the Mountaineers. USF came within three points after a 10-2 run in the second half, but it wasn’t enough as the Bulls went on to lose their fourth conference game this season.
Senior forward McHugh Mattis led USF in points (18) and rebounds (11) in the loss to West Virginia, while senior Melvin Buckley scored 17 points and junior Kentrell Gransberry added 11 points.
Three days prior to facing the Mountaineers, the Bulls beat Cincinnati 74-59 to earn their first Big East win this season.
Notre Dame, the Big East’s second-highest ranked team behind No. 6 Pittsburgh, is coming off a 102-87 loss at Villanova on Wednesday.
The Fighting Irish’s only other conference loss came on the road to Georgetown on Jan. 6.
Notre Dame beat USF 62-55 last season on Feb. 15 in the teams’ first meeting.The Fighting Irish, who returned three starters this season, are led in scoring by guard Russell Carter (18.4 points per game).
Keep an eye on: McHugh Mattis. The senior forward is third on the Bulls in scoring with 12.7 points per game and second in rebounds with 7.1 per game, but his shot blocking ranks among the best in college basketball. Through 19 games, Mattis is third in the nation with 78 blocks. Mattis blocked five shots in each of the past two games.