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Columbus North's Patberg announces commitment to Notre Dame

January 1, 2013
Columbus North High School

    Ali Patberg is ringing in the new year with more than a resolution.

    The Columbus North High School basketball player is celebrating the start of 2013 with a commitment.
    Patberg, a 5-10 sophomore guard who is averaging 18.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists for the 14-0 Bull Dogs, announced Monday evening (Dec. 31) that she has made an oral commitment to accept a women's basketball scholarship to the University of Notre Dame.
    A member of the high school class of 2015, Patberg expects to sign a national letter-of-intent to finalize her commitment in November 2014. She will join coach Muffet McGraw's Fighting Irish program as a freshman for the 2015-16 season.
    "Notre Dame is the place with all the right components for me," said Patberg, who helped Columbus North to a 23-4 record and Class 4A state runner-up finish last season as a high school freshman. "It is a school with an outstanding academic reputation, a fabulous basketball program and coaches and players whom I have grown to like immensely during the recruiting process.
    "It also is an Indiana school and not too far from home, two other factors that are important to me."
    McGraw is unable to comment on Patberg's decision because NCAA rules prohibit her from talking about a prospect until after a player signs a national letter of intent.
    Patberg will become a part of Notre Dame program that stands 10-1 this season and is ranked fifth nationally heading into a game at No. 1 Connecticut on Saturday (Jan. 5).
    Over the past 25 seasons with McGraw at the helm, the Irish have made 19 NCAA Tournament appearances, made 10 Sweet Sixteen trips, qualified for four Final Fours with one NCAA championship (2001) and two national runner-up finishes (2011 and 2012).
    Patberg informed McGraw by telephone of her decision on Monday afternoon (Dec. 31), then spent the latter part of the day calling coaches from other colleges to inform them of her decision.
    Other programs that had offered Patberg a scholarship were Butler, Dayton, Illinois, Indiana, Louisville, Marquette and Purdue. Other schools that had inquired about her included Connecticut, Duke, Maryland, Stanford, Vanderbilt, several other Big Ten schools and numerous other NCAA Division I programs.
    Through 41 high school contests, Patberg's well-rounded game has helped Columbus North to a 37-4 record with 605 points, 234 rebounds, 156 assists, 89 steals and 45 blocks. Those make for career averages of 14.8 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 2.2 steals and 1.1 blocks.
    Columbus North returns to action at 7:30 p.m. Thursday (Jan. 3) when it hosts national power Chicago Whitney Young (14-2) in Memorial Gym. The Bull Dogs follow by traveling to Indianapolis at 2:30 p.m. Saturday (Jan. 5) to face Conference Indiana-rival Perry Meridian (4-7).

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