Up for a fight

When: Sat., 8 p.m.Where: Sun DomeTV/Radio: None, 1250 AM

Prior to the start of a three-game home stand, coach Robert McCullum challenged his team to win at least two contests.

The Bulls responded by defeating Rutgers by 22 points, but fell short of pulling off an upset against then-No. 15 Marquette.

Forward McHugh Mattis played his best game of the season, scoring 20 points on nine of 12 shooting from the field with nine rebounds and six blocks. His efforts fell short, though, as Jerel McNeal stole the game with a buzzer-beating layup to give Marquette a 70-68 victory.

For the Bulls to achieve the goal set by McCullum, they must stop the most prolific scoring offense in the Big East in Notre Dame. Saturday marks the second meeting between the two teams in 13 days. The Fighting Irish captured an 82-58 victory Jan. 21.

In Notre Dame’s last outing, the Irish became the first team in a decade to score more than 100 points in the Carrier Dome as they defeated Syracuse 103-91. Freshman center Luke Harangody recorded career highs with 21 points and 13 rebounds to lead Notre Dame.

The Fighting Irish offense is averaging 83.4 points per game, due largely in part to Russell Carter and his 18.4 points per game. USF ranks 13th in the Big East with 66.3 points.

Notre Dame has struggled on the road this season, compiling a record of 1-3 away from South Bend.

Keep an eye on: Notre Dame guard Colin Falls. The senior scored 14 points – including three shots from beyond the arc – along with five rebounds and four assists.