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Quick hitters: What Notre Dame head coach Micah Shrewsberry said at Team Camp

IMG_7504by:Jack Soble06/13/24

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At Notre Dame’s Team Camp on Thursday, head men’s basketball coach Micah Shrewsberry spoke to local reporters for the first time since the 2023-24 season ended. He discussed the day’s events, coaching the FIBA U18 National Team at the FIBA Americup in Argentina, sophomore guard Markus Burton returning to the Irish and the transfer class of 2024.

Here’s what Shrewsberry had to say.

Why was setting something like Thursday’s Team Camp up important for Notre Dame?

“One, it’s a great way to showcase your program a little bit. You get a chance to get kids on campus. You get a lot of kids on campus with teams. The more people that get a chance to set foot on Notre Dame’s campus is great. I was raised on Indiana high school basketball. We also have teams from Ohio, teams from Kentucky, other states that are here. As we keep going and the years go on, I think [we’ll] add more teams, and just giving them a chance to have the exposure to our university and everything else is great.”

How pivotal is this for Notre Dame and the program’s longevity?

“I think it’s great. We have limited times when we can go out and do stuff and recruit, but any time you get somebody on campus is big. And this is — they’re willingly coming. And not all of these schools have people that we’re recruiting from, but coaches that are great friends, coaches that want to expose their kids to Notre Dame. I think it’s all helpful and it’s all pivotal, and this is something we’re gonna continue to do every year.”

How was the experience coaching the FIBA U18 team, and what do you feel like you gained from that?

“It was really fun. Being at the trials, having a chance to pick the team, go to Argentina together, spend time there. Those players are 12 of the best players in the country — like, you can’t play 12 people, so they’re in different roles. Even for myself, [Arizona head coach] Tommy Lloyd was the head coach, so learning his system and learning how he wanted to do things, it opened things up for me to learn a different way and a different style. Grant McCasland, the head coach at Texas Tech, and I are both doing scouts and scouting teams.

“It was a neat experience. It’s been a non-stop kind of spring and summer for me, but it was kind of refreshing, because I was just coaching basketball.”

One year in, what have you learned about recruiting to Notre Dame?

“You figure out the ins and outs, right? College basketball is constantly evolving, but you also gotta develop your plan and you gotta stick with your plan. I think I’ve tried to have a plan since I’ve gotten here, and no matter how things shake, you still gotta stay with it. I don’t think you can reinvent things totally. There’s small tweaks that you can make, but I don’t think you reinvent things until you have a chance to see, is it working or is it not working. We’re still in that kind of phase of, like, we’re sticking to our plan and this is how we’re doing it. I kind of like where we’re at at this point.”

What stands out about the three transfers you brought in, and what do you envision for them this season?

“I think it’s important, especially this week and the next few weeks coming up, for me to get a chance to get on the court with them. Everybody arrived on Sunday. I didn’t even get back until Tuesday, so I haven’t been on the court with those guys yet. But who they are as people right now really stands out. The voices that Matt Allocco and Nikita [Konstantynovskyi] bring, how they talk, immediately is totally different than who we’ve been and who we were last year. You just got older, more experienced guys, and I think those two and Burke [Chebuhar], that’s what they add, is that experience.

“It’s been a good group. They’ve already started — without any prodding from the coaches — they’ve already started doing stuff together, immediately when they were here. Everybody arrived on Sunday and then Sunday night, they were at Julian Roper‘s house, watching the [NBA] Finals together. And that’s not like, I didn’t tell them to do that. That’s Matt Allocco or Julian Roper, who have never met these other dudes, that are already getting everybody together.

“I think you’ll see a group that, because we have this experience together, you’ll see a group that’s closer. Not to say we weren’t close, but this group, intentionally, is gonna be closer through their own doings. And I’m excited about that.”

What’s the advice you were giving Markus Burton throughout his draft entry/withdrawal process, and what are your thoughts on him coming back?

“Yeah, we’re excited about it. Obviously, it’s good for him to test out and see where he stands, where other people view him. You get opportunities to put your name in the draft. You can take your name out twice without losing your eligibility, so it makes sense to do it. Having a great year like that, it makes sense to now get the feedback that he needs to get and then kind of put it into action.

“I told him, ‘I’m always here.’ My door is open, and I’m here for him. I just want to see him have success. We’re fired up to have him. He’s fired up to be here. I’m looking forward to getting all these guys together and having fun.”

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