The Dagger: College Basketball Blog

When coach Mike Brey loses his mind for 15 seconds, Notre Dame responds

The Dagger

There are good technical fouls (few and far between), and bad technical fouls (all the rest). Notre Dame coach Mike Brey's technical with 7 minutes, 8 seconds left in the first half Monday at Pittsburgh seems to be in class all its own.

Plenty of coaches try to bark at the officials enough to earn a technical as a way to light a fire under their teams, but Brey apparently used just the right words and timed it perfectly based on what came after officials showed him their disapproval.

[Forde Minutes: College basketball coaches go a bit crazy]

The 25th-ranked Fighting Irish were playing some pretty awful basketball to that point against No. 20 Pittsburgh, trailing 17-3. That's right, in the first 12:52 they had scored only three points, making only one of their first 19 shots.

No wonder Brey had the urge to yell.

Once he got it out of his system during a timeout, his team responded. Notre Dame gave up just 25 points in the final 27 minutes of the game and pulled off a 51-42 victory on the road, despite its lowest scoring half of the season and an atrocious start.

ESPN analyst Bill Raftery, who was working the game, gave Brey credit for earning himself the technical when it happened, suspecting it might lead to a turnaround from the Irish.

"Sometimes you need a little fire and it's got to come from you as the leader," Raftery said.

[Related: Cal coach Mike Montgomery shoves player to motivate him]

But no one could have seen the team that played those first 13 minutes suddenly becoming completely dominant. Yet, it happened.

Something to keep in mind next you see a coach lose his mind on the sidelines with his team down big or playing ugly. When a coach's technical actually works in firing up a team, it can be a beautiful thing.

Follow Kyle on Twitter @KyleRingo

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