ACC/Big Ten Challenge Begins Tonight

The ACC/Big Ten Challenge is back once again. This is the 10th edition of the Challenge with the ACC winning it in each of the first nine seasons.

The ACC has won 16 of the last 22 games in this series.

Already we've seen a few games between ACC and Big Ten teams: Duke beat Michigan in the 2K Sports Championship game; Maryland beat Michigan State in the Old Spice Classic. Purdue beat Boston College in the Preseason N.I.T.

So let's take a look at what the next three days have in store.

Wisconsin at Virginia Tech (Mon. 7 pm ET): The Badgers are 0-5 as the road team in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Tech is coming off a tough showing in the Puerto Rico Tip Off. They lost two games by a total of five points and barely beat Elon in the 7th-place game. Both could find themselves in the NCAA Tournament in March. Watchability: It is a decent appetizer to get ready for the Challenge.

Ohio State at Miami (Tue. 7 pm ET): This would have made on heck of a football game several years ago. Now it's a darn good hoops game. It will be interesting to see Ohio State deal with the Miami guards and Miami deal with Ohio State's size. Miami is the only school on either side to not have won a game in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Watchability: One of the darkhorses to be the best game this week.

Iowa at Boston College (Tue. 7 pm ET): Neither team has big plans this year but both have the ability for a few upsets. The Eagles have won both their previous ACC/Big Ten Challenge games. Watchability: The best part of this game is seeing BC's Tyrese Rice tear it up. The fact that it's relegated to ESPNU says it all.

Clemson at Illinois (Tue. 7:30 pm ET): This is potentially a great game. Neither team is of elite status, but both are solid. The Illini just beat Vanderbilt while Clemson is already 7-0. Watchability: It's definitely good for a flip during the Ohio State-Miami game. Don't watch if you are allergic to the color orange.

Virginia at Minnesota (Tue. 8:30 pm ET): Two teams that no one expects anything from. These are the games, however, that prove the ACC's superiority as the ACC's bottom is usually better than the Big Ten's. Watchability: You probably won't be able to see the game anyways.

Duke at Purdue (Tue. 9 pm ET): Seeing Duke play an actual road game is a rarity. So is seeing the Blue Devils lose in the Challenge (they are 9-0). Both teams have high hopes for the season and the atmosphere in West Lafayette will be outstanding. Watchability: The best game of the day.

Indiana at Wake Forest (Wed. 7 pm ET): This has the potential to be the biggest mismatch of the Challenge. This game was set up according to last year's standings. Wake is extremely talented and extremely deep. Indiana is neither. Watchability: Use this as a chance to see the Demon Deacons' talented squad. Nothing more.

Penn State at Georgia Tech (Wed. 7:30 pm ET): This is the best chance for a Big Ten upset. As usual, Tech is struggling against weak opponents. Penn State has looked pretty good to start the season. Watchability: Only if you are a big, big fan.

Michigan at Maryland (Wed. 7:30 pm ET): Both the Wolverines and Terps have pulled off two of the biggest upsets thus far against UCLA and Michigan State, respectively. Both are as hit-and-miss as you can get from each conference. The Terps, for example, followed up an 18-point win over the Spartans with a 22-point loss to Gonzaga and a 27-point loss to Georgetown. Watchability: This should be a good game with a ton of runs. Worth a look if you have ESPNU.

North Carolina vs Michigan State (Wed. 9 pm ET): This is the biggest game of the Challenge. So big that they are playing it at Ford Field. Interesting note: Michigan State is the only Big Ten team with a winning record in the Challenge. North Carolina is just 4-5 in the Challenge ... tied for worst among schools who have been in all nine of them. Watchability: This game is the best chance for the Heels to lose a game before ACC play. See them get beat or see them continue their dominating season.

Florida State at Northwestern (Wed. 9:30 pm ET): This should be an easy Noles win (again, the ACC's bad is better than the Big Ten's). Watchability: With it going on at the same time as UNC-Michigan State, why watch?

ACC/Big Ten Challenge Begins Tonight originally appeared on NCAA Basketball FanHouse on Mon, 01 Dec 2008 06:10:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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