The matchups for the 2019 Big Ten/ACC Challenge were announced on Thursday morning and the Wisconsin Badgers will do battle with the NC State Wolfpack in Raleigh, North Carolina on Wednesday, December 4th. This is a rematch of the 2018 season when, you may remember, the Badgers mounted a large second half comeback to beat the Wolfpack, 79-75, in Madison.
2019 Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchups pic.twitter.com/yDCGvfuu1m— Anna Negron (@ItsAnnaNegron) June 6, 2019
This is the 21st year of the marquee Conference vs. Conference tournament that has become fairly prevalent in college basketball these days and after seven straight years of B1G (5-12-3 overall) dominance, the ACC (12-5-3 overall) has now held the title for the past three. This past year was a tie, at 7-7, but since the ACC had won the previous year those bastards got to keep the Commissioner’s Cup.
The Badgers, to their credit, have won three of their past four bouts in the B1G/ACC Challenge and will look to continue their success against an NC State team that is probably still smarting from being left out of the Big Dance last year.
Wisconsin has won three of its last four #B1GACC Challenge games— Wisconsin Basketball (@BadgerMBB) June 6, 2019
2018: W, 79-75 vs. NC State
2016: W, W, 77-60 vs. Syracuse
2015: W, 66-58 (OT) at Syracuse#OnWisconsin #Badgers pic.twitter.com/vye6wX5Pc0
Traveling to NC State will be a good early season test for the Ethan Happ-less Badgers. This game, along with the Legends Classic in Brooklyn which features Auburn, Richmond and New Mexico, will be the measuring stick many fans use to set expectations for Big Ten play.
The two marquee, can’t miss, send your kids to bed early games feature a pair of Elite Eight rematches: Duke at Michigan State on Tuesday, December 3rd and Purdue at defending national champion Virginia on Wednesday, December 4th. You can also tune into Rutgers at Pitt if your cable package is actually just two dinner forks jammed into the top of your television and also your television is broken.
As far as I can tell, based on the press release, the Badgers game could be the last one of the Tournament so all of the Big Ten’s hopes and dreams could rest on the shoulders of Nate Reuvers drilling pick and pop threes. Bring it on, imo.