The Indiana University men’s basketball team will take on the 18th ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish this Saturday at 2:30 PM in Indianapolis on Fox. The game will mark the 72nd all-time meeting between the programs, with Indiana leading the series 49-22. The series dates back to 1908. Below, we’ve selected our favorite Indiana wins in the series in chronological order. Have another favorite Hoosier victory over the Irish that you think should be on the list? Let us know:
DECEMBER 15, 1970, INDIANA 106 NOTRE DAME 103
Down 53-43 at the half, Lou Watson’s Hurryin’ Hoosiers rallied in the second half to upend the 6th ranked Irish in a shootout at South Bend. Indiana had to overcome ND superstar Austin Carr, who came into the game averaging 30.2 points per game and went for an amazing 54 on this night. George McGinnis and Joby Wright led IU to the victory with 29 points each.
DECEMBER 11, 1975, INDIANA 63 NOTRE DAME 60
Indiana would face an early test on its quest for a perfect 1975-76 season as the 8th ranked Fighting Irish came to Assembly Hall. IU would struggle early, only shooting 29% from the field in the first half but ND didn’t shoot much better in a defensive struggle. The Hoosiers finally gained separation at 51-37 midway through the second half, only to see the Irish claw back to within three a few minutes later. The Hoosiers would hang on despite missing 8 of 12 free throws down the stretch. Adrian Dantley led Notre Dame with 19. Scotty May led IU with 25.
DECEMBER 14, 1977, INDIANA 67 NOTRE DAME 66
The 2nd ranked 6-0 Notre Dame Fighting Irish came to Bloomington as the favorite. Notre Dame was led in part by future NBA stars Bill Laimbeer and Kelly Tripucka. The game was tight throughout as the Irish struggled with Hoosier youngsters Mike Woodson, Steve Risley and Ray Tolbert. It took IU veteran Wayne Radford to hit the game winning free throw with 4 seconds remaining. Woodson led IU with 18.
In a bizarre twist of fate, the Notre Dame team was supposed to fly on the same plane that crashed with the Evansville team aboard it later that same day. The Irish instead chose to travel by bus due to poor conditions. Radford was best friends with one of the passengers that perished on that flight.
DECEMBER 2, 1996, INDIANA 76 NOTRE DAME 75
Andrae Patterson hit a game winning jumper from the lane to give Indiana a 76-75 upset victory over 8th ranked Notre Dame in South Bend. The Hoosiers overcame an 11 point second half deficit. Pat Garrity led the Irish with 36 points. Neil Reed led IU with 21.
DECEMBER 1, 1998, INDIANA 76 NOTRE DAME 72 (OT)
Indiana missed several free throws down the stretch which allowed the Irish to force overtime in South Bend. IU only shot 15 of 27 at the stripe for the game. Jimmy Dillon hit a tough shot at the buzzer to force OT. Indiana continued to miss free throws in the overtime period but escaped with the win. Luke Recker led IU with 27 and AJ Guyton added 17. Troy Murphy led Notre Dame with 23 points and 16 rebounds.
NOVEMBER 30, 1999, INDIANA 81 NOTRE DAME 64 (OT)
Indiana would score the first 17 points of the game and eventually build a 22 point lead in the first half only to give it all away and see the game go to overtime in Bloomington. Then, almost as if the game was restarting from the beginning, Indiana would score the first 15 points of overtime and cruise in the extra session. AJ Guyton led IU with 20 points and Kirk Haston added 18 points and 12 rebounds. Troy Murphy led Notre Dame with 22 points and 16 rebounds.
DECEMBER 5, 2000, INDIANA 86 NOTRE DAME 78
The Tom Coverdale game. Indiana traveled to South Bend and took down the 10th ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 86-78. Coverdale, who had played a total of 41 minutes his freshman season, stunned the home crowd as he led Indiana with 30 points in the victory. The sophomore guard hit 11 of 15 from the field including 4 of 6 from the 3-point line. His previous career high was 13.
DECEMBER 4, 2001, INDIANA 76 NOTRE DAME 75
Indiana led the entire game at Assembly Hall and was up by as much as 14 in the first half. The Irish refused to go away and got within two points with just under a minute remaining. Tom Coverdale hit some big late free throws to seal it. It was Indiana’s 7th win in a row over ND, and 12th of the last 13 games. Jared Jeffries led IU with 28. Chris Thomas led Notre Dame with 24.
DECEMBER 19, 2015, INDIANA 80 NOTRE DAME 73
Some consider this the game that saved a season. Indiana was reeling after a bad trip to Maui and a blowout loss to Duke. The season looked like a lost cause and Hoosier fans were calling for Tom Crean’s job. Things got worse in this game before they got better. Indiana would fall behind by as much as 16 in the second half before they came roaring back. Troy Williams made several big plays to lead the Hoosiers to the win. The Hoosiers would go on to win an outright B1G title.
In case you haven’t had enough IU vs. ND, below is the full game video of the 1991 Indiana/Notre Dame game. This 1991-92 Hoosiers final four squad was recently honored for its 25 year anniversary. IU handled the Irish easily in this one. An interesting thing about this video that you will note right away is that Hoosier legend Steve Alford did the color commentary. The game was also this author’s first ever IU basketball game as a student.
Main photo credit – @diggerphelps