Huskers to Clash with Clemson in Big Ten/ACC Challenge
The Nebraska women's basketball team will collide with Clemson in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Thursday, Nov. 30, the Big Ten Conference announced on Wednesday.
The conference announced the 14-game challenge schedule, which includes five games on Wednesday, Nov. 29, and nine contests on Thursday, Nov. 30, including Nebraska's game with the Tigers in Lincoln. It will mark the 11th season for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, which is scheduled to continue through the 2020-21 campaign. Last year, the ACC won the challenge, 9-5, after the two conferences split the challenge (7-7) in both 2014 and 2015.
The Big Red's game with Clemson will be just the second in school history between the two women's basketball programs. The only previous contest came back on Nov. 24, 1984, when the Tigers knocked off the Huskers, 99-84, in the championship game of the Nebraska Invitational at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
The Huskers are 2-1 at home in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, including a perfect 2-0 at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Nebraska's last home contest in the challenge between two of the nation's premier women's basketball conferences came with an 88-67 victory over NC State on Dec. 3, 2015. That followed a 60-54 victory over Duke at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Dec. 3, 2014.
Nebraska's lone home loss in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge came to Maryland on Nov. 28, 2012, before the Terrapins became a member of the Big Ten.
Nebraska returns four guards to its lineup in 2017-18, led by seniors Jasmine Cincore and Emily Wood, along with sophomores Nicea Eliely and Hannah Whitish. The Huskers also welcome experienced newcomers to the backcourt in senior Janay Morton and sophomore Bria Stallworth. Junior forwards Maddie Simon and Darrien Washington will be joined inside by sophomores Rachel Blackburn and Grace Mitchell. True freshmen Kate Cain (center) and Taylor Kissinger (guard) also will look to help the Huskers immediately in 2017-18, after Nebraska finished with a 7-22 overall record and a 3-13 Big Ten mark in Coach Amy Williams' first season at her alma mater.
Clemson finished 2016-17 with a 15-16 overall record that included a 3-13 ACC mark. Clemson's 15 wins in 2016-17 represented an 11-game improvement in the win column from the 2015-16 campaign. Head Coach Audra Smith enters her fourth season at Clemson with a young and experienced roster that includes eight returning players who each started at least nine games for the Tigers a year ago.
Senior wing Nelly Perry (12.7 ppg), 5-9 junior guard Aliyah Collier (10.0 ppg) and 5-7 junior guard Danielle Edwards (9.7 ppg) return as Clemson's top three scorers from a year ago. Collier was also Clemson's top rebounder last season as a sophomore with 7.9 boards per game, while Edwards was voted the team's best defensive player after notching a team-high 59 steals.
In addition, Kobi Thornton ranked fourth among the Tigers in scoring as a freshman with 9.0 points per game while playing in 26 games without a start. The 6-2 post was named to the ACC All-Freshman Team after adding 5.7 rebounds per game and leading the Tigers with 35 blocked shots on the season.
As a team, Clemson played solid defense throughout the year and allowed just 64.1 points per game, but scored just 59.1 points per contest. The Tigers hit just 37.8 percent of their shots from the field, including 28.6 percent from three-point range.
Game times and TV/video stream information for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge will be announced at a later date. For ticket information regarding Nebraska women's basketball, visit Huskers.com.
The 2017 Big Ten/ACC Women's Basketball Challenge
Wednesday, November 29, 2017
Notre Dame @ Michigan
Wisconsin @ Pittsburgh
Florida State @ Iowa
Maryland @ Virginia
Minnesota @ North Carolina
Thursday, November 30, 2017
Clemson @ Nebraska
Wake Forest @ Penn State
Purdue @ Georgia Tech
Northwestern @ Syracuse
Louisville @ Indiana
Virginia Tech @ Illinois
Michigan State @ Miami
Ohio State @ Duke
NC State @ Rutgers