2016 ACC/Big Ten Challenge matchups announced
Get ready, Big Ten basketball fans! The matchups for the 2016 ACC/Big Ten Challenge were released to the public today.
The annual event, slated for Monday Nov. 28-30, features several outstanding matchups.
How does Michigan State at Duke sound? Or, how about Syracuse at Wisconsin and North Carolina at Indiana?
The Big Ten will look to win the third consecutive challenge. In fact, after losing the event’s first 10 installments, the Big Ten hasn’t lost since 2008. The conference won the Challenge in 2009, 2010, 2011 2014 and 2015, while tying in 2012 and 2013.
Check out the 2016 ACC/Big Ten Challenge matchups and see one fun fact for every matchup.
Monday, Nov. 28
Minnesota at Florida State
These two teams last met in 2013, with the Gophers beating the Seminoles, 71-61, behind 21 points from Austin Hollins.
Wake Forest at Northwestern
Northwestern coach Chris Collins and Wake Forest coach Danny Manning played for two of the most prestigious programs in college basketball history during their playing days. Collins played at Duke from 1992-96, while Manning starred at Kansas in the mid 80’s.
Tuesday, Nov. 29
North Carolina State at Illinois
Illinois is expected to return its entire starting lineup next season, including Malcolm Hill, who ranked in the Top 15 of the Big Ten in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals and free throw percentage.
Michigan State at Duke
Michigan State and Duke will rely heavily on the play of freshmen next season as both the Spartans and Blue Devils feature Top 5 nationally ranked recruiting classes in 2016.
Pittsburgh at Maryland
Pittsburgh is expected to return four of its top five scorers from last year’s team, while Maryland is expected to lose four of its top five scorers from last year’s team. The Terps could potentially be without all five of their top scorers if point guard Melo Trimble decides to remain in the NBA Draft.
Iowa at Notre Dame
The Hawkeyes received great news on Friday when Peter Jok, who averaged 16.1 points per game last season, announced he will be returning to Iowa for his senior season.
Georgia Tech at Penn State
The last time these two programs played one another was back in the 2008 Big Ten/ACC Challenge when Iman Shumpert starred for the Yellow Jackets. Shumpert missed a deep 3-pointer at the buzzer as Penn State held on to win.
Syracuse at Wisconsin
These two teams played one another in last year’s Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Nigel Hayes had 15 points and 12 rebounds as Wisconsin beat Syracuse, 66-58, in overtime.
Wednesday, Nov. 30
Nebraska at Clemson
Nebraska has won three of its last four Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchups, while Clemson has lost three of its last four challenge games.
North Carolina at Indiana
North Carolina and Indiana both rank in the Top 10 when it comes to the most wins in NCAA Division 1 college basketball history. UNC actually has the most wins of any team in the ACC, while Indiana has the most victories of any program in Big Ten history.
Purdue at Louisville
The Boilermakers have won seven straight games in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, which is the longest winning streak of any program to play in the challenge. Purdue is 9-6 overall in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, while Louisville is 1-1 since joining the ACC in 2014.
Rutgers at Miami (FL)
Rutgers will welcome new head coach Steve Pikell to the sideline in 2016, while Miami head coach Jim Larranaga is set to enter his 33rd season as a college basketball head coach.
Virginia Tech at Michigan
These two programs have not played one another since back in 2002 when Virginia Tech defeated Michigan, 65-53.
Ohio State at Virginia
Ohio State is expected to return all five starters from this past year’s team, including the Buckeyes’ top six scorers. On the other end, Virginia will loose three of its top four scorers from last season.