SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Elijah Burns, one of Notre Dame’s three team captains, is leaving the men’s basketball program.
Coach Mike Brey said Monday that Burns, a 6-foot-9 senior forward and largely a backup, will leave school following his graduation in December. He said the Irish will support Burns, who is from Troy, New York, “as he takes the next step in his academic and playing careers.” The announcement came hours before a Tuesday night game against Duquesne.
After missing his freshman season recovering from March 2015 ankle surgery, Burns has a year of eligibility remaining and could have one-plus seasons if he finds a school that can give him immediate eligibility as a graduate transfer.
Earlier this month, Burns had a career-high 15 points with five rebounds in 17 minutes in Notre Dame’s 89-62 victory over Chicago State. Brey rewarded Burns with a start in Notre Dame’s next game, a 63-60 loss to Radford when he played 12 minutes and had no points and two rebounds. He played just four minutes in a win over William & Mary, finishing with one rebound and one blocked shot.
In 44 career games, two of them as a starter, Burns averaged nine minutes, 2.2 points, 2.1 rebounds and was 28 of 68 (41.2 percent) from the field.
With his departure, Notre Dame has 10 scholarship players. Forward Chris Doherty, one of five freshmen who entered this fall, is being redshirted.