IRISH STEW

Notre Dame hoops has national championship distinction - again

IRISH STEW

Tom Noie
South Bend Tribune

When Duke beat Wisconsin to win the 2015 NCAA national championship Monday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Notre Dame earned a three-peat of sorts.

For the third time in the last five years, Notre Dame was the last team to beat the eventual national champion.

In 2011, Notre Dame was the last team to beat Connecticut - in the season finale at Gampel Pavilion in Storrs - before the Huskies and guard Kemba Walker went on an improbable 11-game win streak to win the national championship.

in 2013, Notre Dame was the last team to beat Louisville before the Cardinals ripped off 16-straight victories to win the national championship. Louisville's last loss that season was the historic five-overtime game at Notre Dame in early February.

Notre Dame was the last team to beat Duke this season, which it did in the semifinals of the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament semifinals.

Duke won 21 of its last 23 games this season. The only two losses?

To Notre Dame.

Notre Dame's Pat Connaughton (24) drives against Duke's Justise Winslow during the second half of the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament semifinals in Greensboro, N.C. Notre Dame won 74-64.AP Photo/BOB LEVERONE