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You are watching: 2015 acc big ten challenge

mark Dolejs-USA TODAY sports
The 17th ACC/Big Ten difficulty starts tonight through a whimper, but will end Wednesday night with a bang.

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The ACC/Big Ten event is the successor to the original challenge between the ACC and big East – a exorbitant matchup eliminated by large East coaches who didn’t want to give up regulate of even one of their non-conference gamings – chief amongst them john Thompson of Georgetown and Jim Boeheim of Syracuse.

Maybe that mindset is one reason why the old large East passed away a ache death and also seven former huge East teams are currently members that the ACC.

The ACC changed the huge East with the big Ten, which actually provides sense, since over the course of basketball history, the two leagues (the ACC and huge Ten) have actually been the most successful conferences in NCAA tournament play.

The ACC holds a 10-4-2 command in the big Ten difficulty – yet those numbers space a bit misleading. The ACC won the very first 10 difficulties in a row. The huge Ten won the next three. 2 ties followed, then the large Ten winner again critical December.

Although the outcomes are regularly used come tout the loved one merits the the 2 leagues, the difficulty really doesn’t execute that.

Take last year. The huge Ten winner the Challenge, 8-6. But the ACC actually won the season series with the huge Ten, 15-11. That’s since the an obstacle results are established by matchups and even though those are claimed to roughly match the relative projections that the groups in the two leagues, that doesn’t always happen – for instance, this year, Virginia – projected second in the ACC – is matched against Ohio State – projected saturday in the big Ten.

No, the best measure of a league’s strength is postseason performance. Critical year’s 8-6 loss to the huge Ten in the difficulty meant nothing when contrasted to the ACC’s 17-5 document in NCAA play – with 5 Sweet 16 teams, three Elite Eight teams and the nationwide champion.

The ACC proved it was the strongest league last season as soon as it yes, really counted.

But the an obstacle does sell an interesting beforehand season snapshot of the two leagues. It’s much better than the vast majority of November and December mismatches.

Before looking at this year Challenge, just a couple of notes around the history of the event.

-- fight it out has the ideal record in the occasion – by a large margin. The Devils space 14-2 in challenge play. The next ideal record belongs come (surprise!) wake up Forest, i beg your pardon is 10-4. Maryland is 10-6 (10-5 as a member the the ACC; 0-1 together a member that the huge Ten). Virginia and Clemson are 9-6. Purdue in ~ 8-6 has the best large Ten record. BTW, UNC is at 8-8, together with Minnesota (and essentially the very same as Ohio State at 7-7).

-- since Duke’s rivals favor to case that Duke constantly gets home gamings in the Challenge, i should allude out the this year’s game with Indiana in Cameron will be Duke’s seventh residence game. That’s less than UNC, N.C. State, Clemson and also Wake Forest, i beg your pardon have had actually (or will have after this year Challenge) eight house games. Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue and Northwestern also have (or will have) eight.

But guess the school with the many homecourt games? once Clemson plays in ~ Minnesota tonight, it will be the ninth home video game for the Gophers in the Challenge.

Frankly, i don’t understand the scheduling the the difficulty any more than I know the viewpoint behind the matchups – other than that I recognize that whatever is i ordered it to suit ESPN.

Still, it’s hard to know why the network – and the 2 leagues, of food – want to open the occasion in together a limp manner. Just look at tonight’s 2 games:

Wake woodland (4-2) in ~ Rutgers (3-3), 7 p.m.

The Deacons, picked 11th in the ACC, satisfy the team choose No. 14 in the big Ten.

Wake forest is returning from Hawaii, whereby the Deacs won 2 of three, including upsets of No. 13 Indiana and UCLA. Wake up is still play without an elderly guard Codi-Miller-McIntyre, however senior large man Devin Thomas has been outstanding, while freshman guard Bryan Crawford has been a pleasant surprise.

Rutgers is the lowest ranked team (according to Pomeroy) in either league and is comes off ago to back losses come Creighton and also Clemson.

Clemson (4-1) in ~ Minnesota (4-2), 9 p.m.

The Tigers, picked 12th in the ACC, have actually not yes, really been experiment by anybody so much this season – losing to a UMass team that Pomeroy does not price in the top 100. Minnesota, picked 11th in the big Ten, has actually lost a five-point game to a solid holy place team and was conquered by Texas Tech.

This appears to be a fairly even matchup, tipped in Minnesota’s donate by among the most far-reaching homecourt benefits in the huge Ten.

The competition it s okay much far better on Tuesday night:

Michigan (4-2) at N.C. State (4-2), 7 p.m.

The Wolverines, picked fourth in the large Ten, are off come a hard start. Their 2 losses to be to Xavier and UConn. They likewise have a solid success over Texas. N.C. State, projected No. 8 in the ACC, has had actually a few mores ups and also downs, losing at home to wilhelm & Mary and also in Brooklyn come a rebuilding Arizona State team. They do have a nice win in OT end a talented, yet poorly coached LSU team.

This one most likely depends top top Cat Barber, who can be great (as he was versus Winthrop when he scored 36 points) or dreadful (as he remained in the william & mary loss). State is at home, however the Pack has not prove a particularly impressive homecourt leaf this season – therefore far.

Northwestern (5-1) at Virginia technology (4-2), 7 p.m.

Chris Collins’ third Northwestern team can not cope through North Carolina, but has otherwise played well – specifically in a neutral court win over Missouri. The Wildcats were picked 9th in the huge Ten.

The Hokies, picked 14th in the ACC, have actually actually been pretty competitive ~ a destructive opening home game loss to Alabama State. Southern Florida deliver Zack LeDay has been a double-double machine.

Virginia (5-1) at Ohio State (2-3), 7:30 p.m.

The oddest mismatch of the Challenge. Virginia, coming off two straight ACC continual season titles and also picked come finish second in the ACC, is paired against the team picked to end up seventh in the huge Ten.

The Buckeyes can not use looked that also that good, losing at residence to UT Arlington and also Louisiana Tech prior to losing in overtime to Memphis. Virginia struggled on the road in a loss come George Washington, however has bounced ago to win 4 straight through lopsided margins.

Virginia is No. 3 in the Pomeroy ratings.

Purdue (6-0) at Pittsburgh (4-0), 9 p.m.

The fight of unbeatens – although neither team has actually really played anybody.

Purdue’s ideal win come over rebuilding Florida, while Pitt’s ideal showing remained in a game that to be never decided – the Panthers were up 2 on Gonzaga (No. 10 at the time) when the video game was called at the half. Purdue to be projected 5th in the big Ten; Pitt choose 10th in the ACC.

This is a huge RPI game for Pitt. Due to the cancellation that the Gonzaga game, this can be the just top 100 RPI enemy on your non-conference schedule (depends on even if it is Davidson, quickly the next toughest team left for the Panthers, remains in the height 100).

Miami (5-1) in ~ Nebraska (5-2) 9 p.m.

For a couple of days at least, Miami looked prefer an ACC title challenger after beating Mississippi State, Utah and Butler to success the Puerto Rico Tipoff. Climate the ‘Canes come home and lost come Northeastern.

The Huskers are also tough come figure. They played fine in losses come Villanova and Cincinnati – two pretty strong teams – however their 5 wins nothing amount to much.

Nebraska to be picked 12th in the big Ten; Miami to be projected 5th in the ACC.

Maryland (6-0) at phibìc Carolina (5-1), 9:30 p.m.

By all rights, this should be the headliner – the battle of the 2 preseason organization favorites. Why it’s finishing the second night and also not the third, I have actually no idea.

The Terps have been coming along slowly, in spite of the unbeaten record – lock barely survived homecourt games against Georgetown and also Rider and also were less than impressive versus Illinois State ~ above a neutral court. Yet they walk look much much better in wins over Rhode Island and Cleveland State, so maybe they are coming together.

UNC, of course, has been there is no Marcus Paige and also without him, the preseason No. 1 team has lost at north Iowa and barely edged Kansas State in Kansas City. There are some clues that Paige may shot and play versus the Terps, but no critical word yet.

That leads into the final six gamings Wednesday night:

Louisville (5-0) at Michigan State (7-0), 7:15 p.m.

Nobody in university basketball has actually a far better resume than No. 3 Michigan State, which has actually beaten Kansas and Providence on neutral courts. The Spartans to be picked 3rd in the preseason big Ten polls, but look to be much better than that.

Louisville went into the season as the ACC’s mystery team, built approximately transfers and several terrific freshmen. The Cards, choose seventh in the ACC poll, also looked to be far better than that, although rick Pinto’s team hasn’t challenged anybody practically as good as Michigan State.

Wisconsin (4-3) at Syracuse (6-0), 7:15 p.m.

The defending nationwide runner-ups have actually stumbled out of the gate, shedding three times. Two of the losses weren’t poor (Georgetown and also Oklahoma), yet what around that homecourt lose to west Illinois? The Badgers, picked sixth in the large Ten, walk scrape out a quality one-point success over VCU.

Syracuse, picked 9th in the ACC, win back-to-back ranked teams (UConn and also Texas A&M) to victory the fight 4 Atlantis.

Penn State (3-2) at Boston college (3-2), 7:15 p.m.

Hmm, three gamings on in ~ the same time Wednesday … which to miss?

Hard to imagine much more of a stinker. The ACC’s projected 15th team vs. The big Ten’s 13th team.

BC has been slightly far better than supposed – beating Harvard, also in a down year because that the Crimson, is a rare point for the Eagles. Pen State did beat the Bucknell team the beat Wake, but they also lost at house to Radford.

Notre Dame (4-2) in ~ Illinois (3-4), 9:15 p.m.

A disappointed Notre Dame team, picked 4th in the ACC, takes on one even an ext disappointing Illinois team, choose 10th in the large Ten.

Two that the Illini losses aren’t negative (Providence and also Iowa State), yet they have additionally lost in Chicago to phibìc Florida and also Chattanooga. That provides Notre Dame’s struggles look nearly impressive.

Florida State (4-1) at Iowa (4-2), 9:15 p.m.

A year ago, Iowa noted the win margin for the huge Ten in the difficulty by stunning UNC in Chapel Hill. The Hawkeyes return 4 starters from the 22-win team and also have been play well (not great) with victories end Wichita State and Marquette and also close losses to Notre Dame and also Dayton.

Iowa to be picked eighth in the huge Ten; FSU picked 6th in the ACC.

Florida State, greatly relying top top a pair that freshmen scoring wizards, has additionally been playing relatively well, in spite of losing a game they should have won matches Hofstra.

Indiana (4-2) at battle each other (6-1), 9:15 p.m.

The Hoosiers, picked 2nd in the big Ten, experienced some growing pains in Maui as they tried to work-related freshman large man thomas Bryant right into the lineup. He’s had some very great games, but he was abused by wake Forest’s Devin Thomas. Indiana additionally lost the 6th place game to UNLV.

Oddly, the Hoosiers will certainly play a home video game with Alcorn State tonight prior to heading for Durham.

I’ll have much more on this video game Wednesday morning.

Well, that’s the lineup.

And while i warn you that prognostication is no my strong suit, enable me to guess the the ACC will get wins from wake Forest, Virginia, Syracuse, Florida State and Duke; the large Ten will get wins from Minnesota and Michigan State.

That sounds choose a big edge because that the ACC – 5-2.

But I likewise think Michigan, Northwestern, Iowa and also Purdue space slight favorites because that the big Ten and only Miami and Notre Dame rank together a slim favorites indigenous the ACC in my eyes.

That leaves two gamings that I price as pure tossups – penn State in ~ Boston College and also Maryland at UNC. If i knew Paige was healthy and also at complete speed, I’d provide UNC the edge in ~ home. If he doesn’t play or – worse – tries come play and is subpar, then i favor the Terps on the road.

For what the worth, Pomeroy projects the ACC with an 8-6 win, donate Duke, Virginia, Notre Dame, Miami, N.C. State, Syracuse, wake Forest and Boston College.

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But in the lengthy run, no one of the matters. The genuine conference test will certainly come in March.