July 16, 2008
Clemson, SC – ESPN announced the times and network pairings for the 2008 ACC/Big Ten Challenge men’s basketball games. As previously announced, Clemson will face Illinois on the road in Champaign, IL. The game will be Tuesday, December 2 at 7:30 PM. It will be televised by ESPN-2.
Illinois completed the 2007-08 season with a 16-19 overall record, 5-13 in the Big Ten. Like Clemson, the Illini advanced to the championship game of their conference tournament. Prior to last season, the Illini had compiled a 112-28 record in four seasons under Bruce Weber. He guided the program to four consecutive NCAA Tournament berths prior to 2007-08, including an appearance in the national championship game in 2005. Illinois will return three starters for the 2008-09 season.
Clemson will return three starters as well next season, led by top scorer and second-team All-ACC selection K.C. Rivers. The Tigers finished the 2007-08 season with a #22 final ranking by the Associated Press and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 10 years. Clemson was 24-10 overall and made the program’s second-ever appearance in the ACC Tournament championship game in March. In five years under Oliver Purnell, the Tiger program is 94-68 with four postseason appearances.
Clemson has a 7-2 record in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Only Duke (9-0) and Wake Forest (7-1) have a better record than Clemson in the history of the event. The Tigers have won four straight in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, including a 61-58 victory at home in 2007 over eventual NCAA Tournament participant Purdue. Clemson is 3-2 on the road in the event, having won its last two away challenge games at Penn State and Minnesota in back-to-back years (2005, 2006).
2008 ACC/Big Ten Challenge Pairings
Monday, December 1 7 p.m., ESPN2 – Wisconsin at Virginia Tech
Tuesday, December 2 7 p.m., ESPN – Ohio State at Miami 7 p.m., ESPNU – Iowa at Boston College 7:30 p.m., ESPN2 – Clemson at Illinois 9 p.m., ESPN – Duke at Purdue 9:30 p.m., ESPN2 – Virginia at Minnesota
Wednesday, December 3 7:15 p.m., ESPN – Indiana at Wake Forest 7:30 p.m., ESPN2 – Penn State at Georgia Tech 7:30 p.m., ESPNU – Michigan at Maryland 9:15 p.m., ESPN – North Carolina vs. Michigan State (from Ford Field) 9:30 p.m., ESPN2 – Florida State at Northwestern
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