Notre Dame men's basketball prepares to open season at North Carolina

NOTRE DAME, Ind. (WNDU) - Basketball season is officially upon us, and the Notre Dame men's basketball team has quite the opponent to open the season.

The Irish take on the No. 9 North Carolina Tar Heels Wednesday at 7 p.m.

“The first thing you start with is transition D and defensive rebounding,” head coach Mike Brey said. “They're famous for 50 years of pounding the offensive board and famous for getting the ball in quick and playing up-tempo a lot of possessions. So, we want to, not that we want to play slow, but we want to change some tempo and change some defensive on them.”

Why an ACC opponent so early? Well, the league expanded to 20 conference games a year, which means two of them need to be before Christmas break.

Last year against the Tar Heels, the Golden Domers lost the only matchup 75-69.

It's a familiar opponent that the Irish are ready for.

“We have played well in that building,” Brey said. “We've played well. We've won once in that building. Johnny Mooney is Larry Bird in that building. But I'm excited to see some other guys. You know, like our 10 scholarship guys, they all played. They've all been part of it. They've played in some tough road atmospheres. I'm expecting them to come out of the gate excited and ready to compete.”

Notre Dame kicked off their season against North Carolina at 7 p.m. on the ACC Network.