Feb 10, 2013, 3:56 AM EDT
Coming into Saturday’s matchup, Notre Dame and Louisville had gone to overtime in six of their past ten meetings.
Alright, but the law of averages probably tells us we’re due for an uneventful finish, right?
After Notre Dame senior Casey Murdock hit a half-court shot during College GameDay, host Rece Davis ended the show saying, “What kind of omen could this be for tonight?”
Sure, but should we really expect something more dramatic than an $18,000 heave?
A couple hours before tipoff, a few of us got into a conversation in the office about the crazy ending to the 2005 Illinois – Arizona game, where the Illini rallied from a 15-point deficit with four minutes to play.
Ok, but even as I watched the highlights on YouTube, the thought didn’t cross my mind. There was no way the Irish and Cardinals could have a wilder finish, even if Jay Bilas was in the building, like he was eight years ago at Allstate Arena.
Along with many others in the sellout Purcell Pavilion crowd, I was just hoping for a Notre Dame victory. I didn’t care how it was delivered.
For much of the evening, there was nothing too memorable about the hard-fought battle. It looked like a typical BIG EAST game.
With just under seven minutes to play and the outcome still hanging in the balance, our hopes for an upset took a major blow, when Jack Cooley fouled out on what appeared to be a very questionable call.
Notre Dame stuck around, and trailed by just four with 2:30 to play, but without their leading scorer on the floor, the game began to slip away from the Irish, and disappointed fans started heading for the exits.
That was, at least, until Jerian Grant channeled a bit of Reggie Miller magic. While it wasn’t quite Miller’s famous scoring spree against the Knicks in the ’95 playoffs, Grant’s performance in the final minute of regulation was absolutely spectacular – one of the most amazing feats I think any of us will ever witness on a basketball court.
Having not made a field goal all night, Grant hit three three-pointers, and converted a three-point play, scoring 12 points over the final 45 seconds of regulation, and turning a 56-48 deficit into a game knotted at 60.
Notre Dame and Louisville, headed back to overtime. Typical.
Somehow, that was just the beginning.
Eighty-five points and five overtimes later, the #25 Irish celebrated an improbable 104-101 win over the #11 Cardinals in the longest game in BIG EAST regular season history.
We’ll have more to come on the special night in South Bend, but for now, here are Fighting Irish Digital Media’s highlights, as well as the post-game coverage from ESPN.
About In The Paint
Women’s Basketball on YouTube
- Just finished a great practice with the amazing Coach Izzo and @MSU_Basketball! So grateful for the opportunity! http://t.co/JMxTWEgeho 7 hours ago
- Sold out season tix for 6th straight year, now looking to sell out '14-15 single-game tix - on sale Thurs 8:30 am ET via @NDTIX #PACKEDhouse 13 hours ago
- Thanks to Jeff Nix and Coach Stan Van Gundy for letting us watch the @DetroitPistons practice! Good luck this year🍀🏀 http://t.co/0vxNCF29wL 13 hours ago
- New office today for our coaching staff in Detroit observing the Pistons practice! 🍀🏀 http://t.co/0CQOwWHKIB 15 hours ago
- Congrats to @NDSoccer's Liz Tucker on being named the 2014 NCAA Woman of the Year! Proud to have such a great representative of ND!🍀🍀🍀💚💚💚 1 day ago
Men’s Basketball on YouTube
- We are just days away from our season! RESERVE your tickets for the 2014-15 season-> UND.com/BuyTickets http://t.co/pALxa0nGDs 12 hours ago
- Hey @NDFootball, hands up on defense! Keep up the pressure! #NDvsFSU http://t.co/fOP6jpyjcK 2 days ago
- We are all behind you @NDFootball! Even Florida State's AD is a @FightingIrish fan. It's 1981 alum Stan Wilcox! 2 days ago
- As our guys leave for Fall Break, take a few minutes to see @NDMikeBrey take a break in the summer @ @ChicagolndSpdwy: youtube.com/watch?v=2veDpv… 3 days ago
- While you watch 1993 #NDFBClassics vs FSU @ 8pm on WatchND.tv/classics - remember Monty averaged 22.4ppg that year http://t.co/rZAJi1WAT2 4 days ago
- W. Tennis. Irish Wrap Up Competition At Midwest Regionals
- W. Soccer. Pitch Points: Irish Have The Right Road Formula
- M. Tennis. Irish Doubles Squad Completes Upset Weekend To Claim USTA/ITA Midwest Regional Crown
- W. Soccer. Elizabeth Tucker from University of Notre Dame Named 2014 NCAA Woman of the Year
- M. Tennis. Irish Upset Irish, Earn Bid Into Doubles Championship At Midwest Regionals