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Irish need fill-in for senior

– Notre Dame coach Mike Brey is reinventing his basketball team six games into the Big East season.

During a Wednesday news conference, Brey said Scott Martin is out indefinitely because of problems the sixth-year guard is having with his left knee.

Martin missed the 2009-10 season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee.

Martin has struggled since the No. 24 Irish’s 66-60 win at Cincinnati on Jan. 7, going 2 of 11 from the floor as Notre Dame (15-4, 3-3) lost three of its last four game. Brey said Martin will be out for at least two to three weeks, if not longer.

“He’ll go take care of his business and see if he can get healthy,” Brey said of Martin. “In the meantime, we can’t count on that. We have to move forward with our basketball team right now.”

Brey said he is open to all options to replace Martin, who averaged 7.9 points and 5.9 rebounds, as Notre Dame gets ready to play at South Florida (10-7, 1-4) at noon Saturday.

“I think I’m going into it thinking we’re looking at everybody in a (practice) shirt – Zach (Auguste), Austin (Burgett), (Garrick Sherman), Tom Knight,” Brey said. “We’re going to do it today, we’re going to do it tomorrow, and we’re probably going to do it the first half Saturday to see, what do we have?”

Sherman, a senior center who transferred from Michigan State last year, averages 7.8 points and 3.6 rebounds, but the Irish have used Knight, a junior forward, more than Sherman in the last two games. Knight averages 2 points and 1.6 rebounds. Auguste and Burgett are freshman forwards and have combined to play 91 minutes.

tkrausz@jg.net

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