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Let The Madness Begin: Irish Headed to Dayton

Mar 17, 2013, 7:24 PM EDT

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And so the field of 68 is set.

The Notre Dame men’s basketball team drew the #7 seed in the West Region, and will be headed to nearby Dayton, Ohio to meet #10 seed Iowa State on Friday (tip-off time approximately 9:45 pm ET).

After finishing the regular season and BIG EAST tournament with a 25-9 record, the Irish were essentially a look for an at-large selection. Still, they had to wait around for nearly an hour on Sunday night, as the West Region was the final brackets to be unveiled.

Personally, this draw came as a bit of a surprise. I thought the Irish had done enough to earn a #6 seed, with some “bracketologists” even projecting them as a #5. What’s even more surprising to me is that Marquette checked in as a #3 seed, even after Notre Dame knocked the Golden Eagles out during their first BIG EAST tournament game. It really makes you wonder if that quarterfinal win had any effect on seeding.

Should the Irish beat the Cyclones on Friday, they would face the winner of #2 Ohio State vs. #15 Iona, where you would expect a very scarlet and gray crowd, just over an hour from the Buckeyes’ campus in Columbus.

We’ll have more coming in the days leading up to the beginning of the tournament, for now, here’s some immediate reaction from head coach Mike Brey, as well as players Jack Cooley, Eric Atkins, Pat Connaughton and Jerian Grant.

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Welcome to In The Paint, the official blog providing in-depth and exclusive access to the Notre Dame basketball programs. With features, videos, photos, commentaries and news from inside the Purcell Pavilion, we are committed to bringing you coverage of the Fighting Irish unlike any you can find elsewhere.

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