Huskers to Host Wake Forest in Big Ten/ACC Challenge
Lincoln - The Nebraska basketball team will host Wake Forest in the 2011 Big Ten/ACC Challenge Presented by DICK'S Sporting Goods, as ESPN released the pairings for this year's event on Tuesday.
The two-day event, which is televised on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3.com, will have all 12 teams from both the Big Ten and ACC participating with the Huskers joining the Big Ten on July 1.
Wake Forest is coached by former Colorado head coach Jeff Bzdelik and are led by forward Travis McKie, who paced the Deacons in both scoring (12.9 ppg.) and rebounding (7.6 rpg.) last season en route to the ACC All-Freshman Team. Wake Forest, which went 8-24 in 2010-11, featured one of the youngest starting lineups in the country, starting three freshmen in its final nine games.
The Nov. 30 matchup between the Huskers and Demon Deacons will be the first time Nebraska has hosted an ACC school and one of nine first-time matchups in the 2011 Challenge. Miami is the only ACC member to ever play in Lincoln, when the Huskers topped the Hurricanes, 85-58 on Nov. 18, 1970. That meeting took place prior to Miami joining the ACC.
The Huskers are 4-5 all-time against current ACC members, and this year's matchup with Wake Forest will be the first ACC opponent on Nebraska's schedule since an 82-67 win over Miami on Dec. 30, 2006.
The 2011 Challenge involves six teams ranked in an early preseason top 25 by ESPN.com senior college basketball writer Andy Katz, including three in the top five: No. 1 North Carolina, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 5 Duke, No. 11 Wisconsin, No. 21 Florida State and No. 23 Michigan.
This year's event - top college basketball programs playing for conference supremacy and the Commissioner's Cup -- will include 11 teams that played in the 2011 NCAA Tournament: Clemson, Duke, Florida State and North Carolina from the ACC, and Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin from the Big Ten.
The Big Ten won the Commissioner's Cup for the second consecutive year while the ACC won the previous 10 Challenges. In the event of a 6-6 tie this year, the Commissioner's Cup will remain with the conference that won the previous year.
While this is Nebraska's first Big Ten/ACC Challenge appearance, the Huskers have enjoyed the challenge format under Doc Sadler. The Huskers went 3-1 in the Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series, which matched the best performance by any Big 12 school in that span.
The rest of the 2011-12 men's schedule, which will include nine Big Ten home games, will be released later this summer. For ticket information, visit Huskers.com or call 800-8-BIGRED.
Tuesday, Nov. 29
Miami at Purdue; Northwestern at Georgia Tech; Illinois at Maryland; Michigan at Virginia; Clemson at Iowa; Duke at Ohio State
Wednesday, Nov. 30
Indiana at North Carolina State; Penn State at Boston College; Florida State at Michigan State; Virginia Tech at Minnesota; Wake Forest at Nebraska; Wisconsin at North Carolina