If it were a football game, it would be the talk of the nation. But Notre Dame (21-14) and Penn State (25-11) will renew their basketball acquaintances Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden when the Irish and the Nittany Lions square off in the National Invitation Tournament semi-finals. The...[details]
Personal: JUNIOR SEASON (2007-08): Effective and efficient player on the court ... provides a spark and high level of energy when he is in the game ... versatile all-around player at both ends of the floor ... one of the team's best defenders ... understands how to play the game ... respected by his teammates for his basketball knowledge because he knows the Irish system so well ... plays with a great deal of passion and intensity on the floor ... displays hustle on the floor and embraces his role as a defender ... will be a leader on the court this season ... a unique player who is a very difficult matchup for opposing teams ... effective player around the basket ... can handle the ball in the open court.
SOPHOMORE SEASON (2006-07): Played in all 32 games and was in the starting lineup on four occasions ... averaged 5.8 points and 4.8 rebounds ... scored in double figures in six outings ... played 31 minutes and finished with 10 points on 5-8 shooting and six rebounds versus Winthrop ... started in place of Colin Falls (out with an injury) against Elon for his first career start and finished with six points and three rebounds and also earned a start against Portland ... made third start of season and third of his career against Syracuse due to foot injury to Rob Kurz ... responded with fourth double-double of season as he scored a career-high 14 points and grabbed 10 boards, in addition to dishing off six assists while playing a career-high 34 minutes ... also was in the starting lineup in loss at South Florida and played 18 minutes ... came off the bench against Providence and matched his career-high in points (14) and minutes played (34) as he connected on 7-11 shots from the field ... also grabbed eight rebounds, dished off three assists and made two steals ... has scored in double figures in five games and grabbed 10-plus rebounds in four contests ... recorded first double-double of his career in season opener versus IPFW with career-highs of 11 points and 12 rebounds while playing 20 minutes ... nearly pulled off a triple-double in win over Seton Hall as he netted a career-high 12 points as he connected on 6-10 shots from the field, grabbed 10 rebounds (second 10-plus rebounding effort of his career) and dished off a career-high eight assists while playing 25 minutes (matching a career-high) ... finished with nine points, three rebounds, four assists and two blocked shots against South Florida ... scored six points in win over Louisville in BIG EAST opener ... scored seven points and grabbed seven rebounds in loss at Georgetown ... scored seven points off the bench in win at Cincinnati ... played a then career-high 32 minutes against St. John's and finished with six points and six rebounds ... in 21 minutes off the bench, scored six points and grabbed seven rebounds against Villanova ... played 25 minutes in win over Maryland off the bench and contributed eight points, nine rebounds and a career-high, four assists ... dished off five assists in win over DePaul ... scored two points and grabbed eight rebounds against Rutgers ... had four points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals in win over Lafayette ... grabbed four rebounds against The Citadel ... started the second half against Lehigh and finished with 11 points (matching a career best) as he connected on 4-5 shots from the field ... also grabbed seven rebounds, dished off three assists and made two steals playing 22 minutes ... scored six points, grabbed four rebounds and dished off three assists against Winston-Salem ... also scored six points and grabbed four rebounds against Portland, in addition to dishing off two assists and making two steals ... finished with six points and five rebounds against Army ... scored six points and dished off three assists versus Rider ... scored five points, grabbed three rebounds, dished off two assists and made two steals against Stony Brook.
FRESHMAN SEASON (2005-06): Appeared in 12 games and in five BIG EAST contests and averaged 0.6 points and 0.2 rebounds ... scored his first collegiate points on two baskets in the win over Niagara ... also scored two points on two free throws against Fordham ... played in the season opener against Lafayette ... came off the bench and played a season-high 10 minutes against Florida International ... had assists in the Florida International and Fordham contests ... grabbed a rebound in the Hofstra, Florida International and Fordham games ... missed the Villanova, West Virginia game with back spasms and the Louisville game with a broken thumb ... scored two points in win over Rutgers.
AWARDS AND HONORS: BIG EAST Academic All-Star Team (2006-07 and 2005-06) ... Most Improved Player Award.
HIGH SCHOOL: Second-team all-state pick as a senior, in addition to garnering first-team all-conference and all-city honors ... averaged 15.3 points, nine rebounds and four assists per game as a senior en route to leading St. John's to its fourth consecutive Toledo City League title ... a first-team Academic All-Ohio honoree in his final scholastic campaign ... also selected to the Toledo Blade all-star team as a senior ... notched 13.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per game, while shooting 60 percent from the field as a junior ... led his squad to a regional championship and the state title game 2003-04 despite missing 10 games with a knee injury ... recipient of second-team all-city and honorable mention all-district honors as a junior ... led St. John's Jesuit to the state semifinal game as a sophomore ... three-time conference defensive player of the year ... finished prep career with over 700 points and nearly 500 rebounds and 200 assists ... high school coach was Ed Heintschel ... also lettered twice in soccer helping his squad to a regional championship as a sophomore.
PERSONAL: Full name is Zachary Paul Hillesland ... oldest of two children ... Christian Service Program and Peer Tutoring participant ... son of Diann Cairns ... father, the late Dan Hillesland, played basketball at Augustana ... born 11-13-86 in Toledo, Ohio ... member of Notre Dame's Academic Honors Program ... enrolled as a marketing major in the Mendoza College of Business.