Cavalier Hoops Will Travel to Wisconsin for ACC/Big Ten Challenge

May 14, 2012

The Virginia men’s basketball team will play at Wisconsin on Nov. 28 in the 14th ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

The game will be the first meeting between Virginia and Wisconsin in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and the third meeting overall. The teams split the two previous meetings.

The teams have not met since the 1999 Top of the World Classic in Fairbanks, Alaska, when Wisconsin defeated the Cavaliers 66-56. The only other meeting between the two teams came in the Milwaukee Classic during the 1974-75 season when Virginia won 86-78 in Milwaukee, Wis.

Wisconsin finished the 2011-12 season with an overall record of 26-10 and reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament before losing to Syracuse 64-63. UVa was 22-10 last season and lost to Florida in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Dick Bennett, the father of Virginia head coach Tony Bennett, is a former head coach at Wisconsin. Tony Bennett served on the staffs of his father, Brad Soderberg and current Badger head coach Bo Ryan during four years at Wisconsin.

Virginia defeated Michigan 70-58 at John Paul Jones Arena in last season’s ACC/Big Ten Challenge, while Wisconsin lost 60-57 at North Carolina. The Cavaliers have a 7-5 record in the Challenge and Wisconsin is 6-7.

The 2012 ACC/Big Ten Challenge is scheduled for Nov. 27-28 and features 12 games.

The other games scheduled on Nov. 28 in addition to the Virginia-Wisconsin game include Ohio State at Duke, Michigan State at Miami, Purdue at Clemson, Georgia Tech at Illinois and Boston College at Penn State. On Nov. 27 the schedule includes North Carolina at Indiana, NC State at Michigan, Minnesota at Florida State, Maryland at Northwestern, Iowa at Virginia Tech and Nebraska at Wake Forest.

Starting times and television networks for this year’s ACC/Big Ten Challenge games have not yet been announced. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will combine to televise all 12 games of the two-day event.

The ACC won the Commissioner’s Cup the first 10 years of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and the Big Ten has won the Commissioner’s Cup the last three years. The Big Ten won eight of the 12 games last season.

After losing at Minnesota (74-62) in the first ACC/Big Ten Challenge during the 1999-2000 season, Virginia defeated Purdue (98-79) in Charlottesville in 2000-01.

Virginia played Michigan State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge during the 2001-02 season, but the game was halted with 15:04 left in the contest due to wet floor conditions at the Richmond Coliseum in Richmond, Va. The unseasonably warm temperature (70 degrees) combined with the ice surface under the playing court produced condensation on the court causing slippery conditions that forced the game to be halted. UVa led 31-28 when play was stopped.

The Cavaliers lost at Michigan State (82-75) in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge during the 2002-03 season, defeated Minnesota (86-78) in Charlottesville in 2003-04, won at Northwestern (48-44) during the 2004-05 season and defeated Northwestern at home (72-57) in the 2005-06 season. Virginia lost at Purdue (61-59) in 2006-07, beat Northwestern (94-52) in Charlottesville in 2007-08 and lost at Minnesota (66-56) during the 2008-09 season. The Cavaliers lost at home to Penn State (69-66) in 2009-10 and won at Minnesota (87-79) in 2010-11 before defeating Michigan at John Paul Jones Arena last season.


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