Monday, July 8, 2013

the school: Notre Dame

It pains me to say it, because Lord knows the Domers don't need larger heads than they've already got, but Notre Dame is not only a brilliant addition to the ACC, it's essentially a necessary one.  Everyone else has been looking to add to their conference a big, high-profile team, and of all the teams that actually moved conferences, Notre Dame has the highest of profiles.  The ND logo looks decidedly odd among all the other ACC ones, even the other two new schools, but it's a marriage of some necessity.  And the Irish bring a ton of instant, and very tangible, cachet.

Overall profile

Enrollment (undergrad):

1. Florida State: 31,800
2. Maryland: 26,800
3. NC State: 26,200
4. Virginia Tech: 23,900
5. North Carolina: 18,600
6. Pittsburgh: 18,400
7. Clemson: 16,600
8. Virginia: 15,800
9. Syracuse: 14,800
10. Georgia Tech: 14,500
11. Miami: 10,300
12. Boston College: 9,100
13. Notre Dame: 8,400
14. Duke: 6,500
15. Wake Forest: 4,800

Academic rank (USN&WR):

1. Duke (#8)
2. Notre Dame (#17)
3. Virginia (#24)
4. Wake Forest (#27)
5. North Carolina (#30)
6. Boston College (#31)
7. Georgia Tech (#36)
8. Miami (#44)
9(t). Syracuse (#58)
9(t). Maryland (#58)
9(t). Pittsburgh (#58)
12. Clemson (#68)
13. Virginia Tech (#72)
14. Florida State (#97)
15. NC State (#106)

Director's Cup average:**

1. North Carolina: 6.2
2. Florida State: 9
3. Virginia: 10.6
4. Duke: 12
5. Notre Dame: 18.4
6. Maryland: 28.8
7. Virginia Tech: 40
8. Clemson: 50.8
9. Syracuse: 54
10. Miami: 56.4
11. Georgia Tech: 59.6
12. NC State: 60.2
13. Boston College: 67.6
14. Wake Forest: 70.8
15. Pittsburgh: 113.6

**average finish in the last five years, including 2013.
When you think about it, having five teams that averaged in the Director's Cup top 20 in the past five years is pretty good.  It leaves less than four each to be scattered among the other four major conferences.  I think a world-class university should excel in everything it does, athletics included, and there are really only three schools in the ACC that can make a strong claim that they do.  (And one of them is muddling their way through a no-show class scandal with tutors who wrote papers for players and getting caught agents crawling around the place being buddies with "Coach Black Santa."  So.)

Anyway, Notre Dame.  Their academic prowess is well-known and their Director's Cup standings have been moving in the right direction as well, from 27th in 2010 to 9th in 2013.  People talk about how the ACC will add Louisville at just the right time, but basketball and football fame can be fleeting if they don't work to maintain their grasp and there's another whole season to go.  ND has their whole program moving upwards just as they hit the ACC.

Sports we play that they don't




Field hockey

Sports they play that we don't


Ice hockey



With 23 teams, UVA offers more varsity sports than most other schools.  I haven't counted, but I would guess maybe only 15 or so D-I schools offer that many or more.  We're talking Michigan, Ohio State, UCLA, Texas, that kind of school.  (Actually, I just looked it up and UCLA only has 22 if you don't count "sand volleyball.")  Anyway, with 24 sports, ND is one of those schools; they have 12 for men and 12 for women.  The big one is hockey (and it's a little surprising there's no women's team.)  There's also fencing, which I think will make them the only ACC team to have that sport.  We've got wrestling and field hockey; I'm a little surprised that a Midwestern school has no wrestling and that a rich kids' school has no field hockey.

Common sports

(The number after each year shows how many Director's Cup points were earned by that sport in that year.)


2008-2009: 0 (UVA 78)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 64)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 83)
2011-2012: 0 (UVA 25)
2012-2013: 0 (UVA 64)

Totals: 0 (UVA 314)

Brian O'Connor will get a chance to go against his old team.  Irish baseball isn't much of a power, though; they're probably a notch or two below Pittsburgh and less likely than the Panthers to initially threaten to make the ACC tournament.  It might be interesting to see how they can recruit against other Midwestern teams that are stuck in Midwestern conferences, though.  UVA shouldn't find them to be a major threat to the upper echelons of the conference.

Men's basketball

2008-2009: 0 (UVA 0)
2009-2010: 25 (UVA 0)
2010-2011: 50 (UVA 0)
2011-2012: 25 (UVA 25)
2012-2013: 25 (UVA 0)

Totals: 125 (UVA 25)

Notre Dame hoops wasn't really a thing in the 90s, but made a reappearance on the national scene under Mike Brey, and it might've gotten even farther if it hadn't been overshadowed by an expanding and improving Big East.  Instead they became sort of an "oh yeah, also them too" kind of team when talking about how deep the Big East was, after teams like Syracuse and Louisville got mentioned.  Now they'll be sort of the same deal in the ACC: strong, almost always tourney-worthy, a step or two shy of being a national contender.

Women's basketball

2008-2009: 25 (UVA 50)
2009-2010: 64 (UVA 25)
2010-2011: 90 (UVA 0)
2011-2012: 90 (UVA 0)
2012-2013: 83 (UVA 0)

Totals: 352 (UVA 75)

There's a lot less parity in women's hoops than in men's, and ND has taken advantage of that, lately emerging as challengers to Tennessee and UConn and making three Final Fours in a row.  In fact, they recently became the first team to beat both of those schools in the same tournament.  They should be the ACC's top program instantly.

Men's cross country

2008-2009: 36 (UVA 48)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 45)
2010-2011: 24 (UVA 40)
2011-2012: 26 (UVA 0)
2012-2013: 46 (UVA 61.5)

Totals: 132 (UVA 194.5)

Women's cross country

2008-2009: 16 (UVA 22)
2009-2010: 28 (UVA 45)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 32)
2011-2012: 30 (UVA 34)
2012-2013: 60 (UVA 0)

Totals: 134 (UVA 131)

For what it's worth, Notre Dame is a perennial winner of the National Catholic Championship, which invites about 35 schools every year.  They have a solid CC program that should at least be a contender in the ACC, with outside chances at a championship.


2008-2009: 45 (UVA 0)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 0)
2010-2011: 45 (UVA 0)
2011-2012: 25 (UVA 25)
2012-2013: 85 (UVA 0)

Totals: 200 (UVA 25)

Since Notre Dame isn't a football member of the ACC per se, it seems potentially not worth the discussion here.  But then, we'll play them more often than we ever play NC State or Clemson, so why not?  Anyway, I didn't have to explain Syracuse lacrosse to you and I don't have to explain Notre Dame football either.  This whole ACC deal might not have ever gotten done if ND hadn't agreed to always play a partial ACC schedule; it's pretty important for the ACC to have five televised ND games every two years.

Men's golf

2008-2009: 0 (UVA 46.5)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 65)
2010-2011: 21 (UVA 27.5)
2011-2012: 40 (UVA 51.5)
2012-2013: 0 (UVA 39)

Totals: 61 (UVA 229.5)

Women's golf

2008-2009: 27 (UVA 70.5)
2009-2010: 24 (UVA 63)
2010-2011: 52 (UVA 80)
2011-2012: 28 (UVA 80)
2012-2013: 29 (UVA 42)

Totals: 160 (UVA 335.5)

I'm not terribly well qualified to talk about golf; you can draw conclusions from the numbers above just as well as I can.

Men's lacrosse

2008-2009: 25 (UVA 83)
2009-2010: 90 (UVA 83)
2010-2011: 60 (UVA 100)
2011-2012: 83 (UVA 60)
2012-2013: 60 (UVA 0)

Totals: 315 (UVA 326)

It seems like Notre Dame is still a newcomer to lacrosse's elite scene, and maybe they kind of are.  But it's been four years since they failed to get past the first round, and they've been a semi-regular participant in the Final Four the last couple years.  Adding ND to the ACC will help ensure the conference stays at the very top of the lacrosse world, especially with a new Maryland-based threat from the Big Ten.

Women's lacrosse

2008-2009: 60 (UVA 25)
2009-2010: 25 (UVA 60)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 25)
2011-2012: 25 (UVA 25)
2012-2013: 25 (UVA 70)

Totals: 135 (UVA 205)

ND's women's team isn't quite as accomplished as Syracuse's, and they have a Midwestern recruiting rival in Northwestern that might make it hard for them to move into the elite.  But they're still a solid team that should add to the ACC's degree of difficulty.

Men's soccer

2008-2009: 50 (UVA 50)
2009-2010: 50 (UVA 100)
2010-2011: 50 (UVA 25)
2011-2012: 0 (UVA 25)
2012-2013: 64 (UVA 50)

Totals: 114 (UVA 250)

Unlike with the other two schools, the ACC is getting a pretty well-accomplished soccer program in the Irish.  They're coming off a Big East championship season - during which they also beat Duke and Clemson, mid-level ACC teams - and they tend to advance a round or two in the NCAAs each year.  They should be at least a respectable addition to the conference, if not a strong contender at times.

Women's soccer

2008-2009: 90 (UVA 64)
2009-2010: 83 (UVA 64)
2010-2011: 100 (UVA 64)
2011-2012: 25 (UVA 73)
2012-2013: 73 (UVA 64)

Totals: 371 (UVA 329)

The Irish have one of the elite women's soccer programs in the country; only North Carolina has been to more championship games, and ND took home the title in 2010.  Putting them in the same conference as UNC in this sport is, well, it's kinda like putting Duke and UNC in the same basketball conference, only with more geographical separation.  Even more so, really; men's hoops is a fairly large oligarchy, whereas there's no question in women's soccer that it's UNC, then ND, then the rest of the country.


2008-2009: 50 (UVA 0)
2009-2010: 50 (UVA 25)
2010-2011: 25 (UVA 0)
2011-2012: 50 (UVA 0)
2012-2013: 25 (UVA 0)

Totals: 200 (UVA 25)

For softball, the ACC is good, not great; Florida State went 18-2 in conference play this year and wasn't rewarded with a regional.  The jump for Notre Dame to the ACC isn't a huge one.  ND has been making the tournament with semi-ease and then not making it out of the regional for several years now; their performance in the ACC should be much the same.  UVA is near the bottom, looking way up, so Notre Dame will be more of a concern for the UNCs of the world that hover near the middle-top and the tournament bubble.

Men's swimming and diving

2008-2009: 0 (UVA 69)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 67.5)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 70.5)
2011-2012: 46 (UVA 60)
2012-2013: 33 (UVA 47)

Totals: 79 (UVA 314)

Women's swimming and diving

2008-2009: 43 (UVA 64.5)
2009-2010: 30 (UVA 69)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 63)
2011-2012: 51.5 (UVA 57)
2012-2013: 58.5 (UVA 56)

Totals: 183 (UVA 309.5)

As should be evident from the numbers above, ND's women's swim teams have generally been better than the men; the men, however, are on the rise, and broke through two years ago to claim the Big East championship.  Neither team has finished lower than second in the past two seasons.  UVA still has a better team, as long as we can find a worthy successor to Mark Bernardino, but the Irish present a threat.

Men's tennis

2008-2009: 25 (UVA 73)
2009-2010: 25 (UVA 83)
2010-2011: 50 (UVA 90)
2011-2012: 50 (UVA 90)
2012-2013: 25 (UVA 100)

Totals: 175 (UVA 436)

I mean, UVA hasn't lost a men's tennis contest in the ACC in something like six years.  Notre Dame has a decent outfit but UVA is the class of the conference in this sport, and ND won't be changing that.

Women's tennis

2008-2009: 83 (UVA 50)
2009-2010: 83 (UVA 50)
2010-2011: 50 (UVA 64)
2011-2012: 50 (UVA 64)
2012-2013: 50 (UVA 64)

Totals: 316 (UVA 292)

These matches, on the other hand, should be pretty tight.  Our women's team is good, and very competitive in the conference, but doesn't rise to the level of the men's team; ND made a couple Final Fours a few years ago and should slot in somewhere near the top of the ACC as well.  They knocked off 5th-placed (in the ACC) Georgia Tech twice in the past season, and easily handled NC State in the opening round of the tournament.

Men's track and field (outdoor)

2008-2009: 24.5 (UVA 24.5)
2009-2010: 5 (UVA 49.5)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 46)
2011-2012: 0 (UVA 15)
2012-2013: (UVA 0)

Totals: 5 (UVA 135)

Women's track and field (outdoor)

2008-2009: 50 (UVA 36.5)
2009-2010: 0 (UVA 0)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 44)
2011-2012: 0 (UVA 0)
2012-2013: (UVA 0)

Totals: 0 (UVA 80.5)

Track is not ND's strong suit, but then, neither is it ours except in fits and starts.  UVA is much closer to changing that and fielding strong teams that regularly place athletes in the national meet than Notre Dame is.

Women's volleyball

2008-2009: 0 (UVA 0)
2009-2010: 25 (UVA 0)
2010-2011: 0 (UVA 0)
2011-2012: 0 (UVA 0)
2012-2013: 25 (UVA 0)

Totals: 50 (UVA 0)

One of ND's weaker programs nationally, the volleyball team makes occasional appearances at the tournament and doesn't generally advance.  That'll still put them at least in the middle-to-top of the ACC, and it'll be a while before UVA can consider competing with them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm a little surprised that there's some shock over the loss of Taylor Barnette. While the timiing of it is surprising, it was going to be tough to get playing time, particularly if Hall or Perrantes ate major minutes at the point.

Off the top, that puts us at 11 scholarship players for 2013-2014 (3 upper classmen, 6 in the sophomore class, and 2 freshmen). That certainly allows much more flexibility in the Stith/2014 class if they can get guys.

In terms of PT next year, it also makes things a bit easier to sort out. I do wonder if someone takes a redshirt year, but now, you have the 4 bigs rotating at the 4/5 (Gill/Tobey/Mitchell/Atkins), 4 "wing" guys (Anderson/Brogdon/Harris/Nolte), and 3 guards.

IIRC, Bennett seemed to suggest Perrantes would play this year, but on paper, Perrantes redshirting (or Hall, if London beats him out), does make a ton of sense. I half wonder if someone like Nolte could take a year to get stronger, but I doubt it.