Day #2 is in the books with the B1G taking a commanding 6 games to 2 lead in the challenge. The ACC will need a miraculous finish on day three to make things interesting. The results from Tuesday were:
Pittsburgh 69 Indiana 81
Minnesota 84 Wake Forest 69
Syracuse 65 (17) Michigan 68
N.C. State 61 Purdue 66
(24) Illinois 61 (15) Miami 70
(14) Ohio St 55 (5) Louisville 64
As you can see here http://talking10.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1473&action=edit on Tuesday morning I gave my 2 cents on the slate of games that were going to occur. I ended up going 5-1 on the day. My mistake was underrating the Hoosiers firepower at home.
Wednesday brings another 6 games starting at 6:15pm that will be shown across ESPN’s networks.
The slate of games are as follows:
Virginia Tech at Penn St – 6:15PM: ESPNU
If you haven’t seen do-it-all Penn St guard D.J. Newbill, here is your chance. The 6’4 senior guard is averaging 25 ppg through 7 games this season. The Nittany Lions should roll here, 77-62 PSU.
(19) Michigan St at Notre Dame – 6:15PM: ESPN2
Two senior guards battle as Travis Trice of Michigan St faces off against Jerian Grant of the Irish. This one should shape up to be an outstanding game. I like Michigan St to hold on late to avoid the upset, 68-64 Spartans.
Iowa at (12) North Carolina – 6:30PM: ESPN
Iowa will try to record an upset win over the ultra-talented Tarheels. Iowa has one of the premier forwards in the country in Aaron White. Both teams play in an up-tempo style of offense which should lead to some exiting action to watch with lots of scoring. When push comes to shove, I expect the Heels to outscore the Hawks, 89-77.
Georgia Tech at Northwestern – 8:15PM: ESPNU
Two teams who are playing for the future take to the hardwood. Northwestern struggles to score the ball right now. I’ll take the Yellow Jackets in a close one, 63-59.
(7) Virginia at (21) Maryland – 8:15PM: ESPN2
At first glance this has all the making to be a prime time ACC clash. The only problem is that Maryland now plays in the B1G conference. Conference affiliation aside, this should be a fantastic game. The established star Dez Wells is meshing well with Melo Trimbel, the fantastic Maryland Freshman guard. They will have their hands full with the suffocating Virginia defense that really enjoys shutting teams down (see Rutgers scoring 8 points in the second half against them). I think that the Cavaliers will find a way to win on the road to show the nation that they are still a top team. Cavs 64-60
(4) Duke at (2) Wisconsin – 8:30PM: ESPN
The grand finale of the B1G/ACC Challenge will not disappoint. 31 NBA scouts will be at the Kohl Center to watch a bunch of top prospects meet in a potential Final Four preview. So many fascinating match-ups to watch, including: Okafor vs Kaminsky, Winslow vs Dekker, Jones vs Jackson, Jefferson vs Hayes, etc.
This game will be an absolute battle, both teams will take turns making runs throughout the first 20 minutes. The second half will be about which team is mentally tougher at this stage in the season. My money is on the experienced Badgers to get the job done at home. It won’t be easy, but I like the Badgers to win it by a final score of 75-68.
If these results hold it is looking like the B1G’s chances to win the event outright is very good. This would also increase the ACC’s drought to 6 years without winning the Challenge outright.
The B1G only needs to win 2 of the 6 remaining games to claim the event, which seems likely, but you can never be too sure with the inconsistent nature of early-season college basketball. Will the B1G take home bragging rights for the rest of the season? Find out tomorrow evening.