Ready for tonight’s showdown between #1 Duke and #6 Michigan State? Yes, the main event of the Big Ten ACC Challenge, the premier event of the non-conference portion of the college basketball season. And tonight’s final bout, the heavyweight match on the card features two Final Four teams from last season.
Here are some numbers, trends and facts about Duke’s history in the challenge, and not many of them are in the Spartans favor tonight.
-Duke has won 16 consecutive games entering Wednesday’s contest.
– The Blue Devils are looking to open the season 7-0 for the 16th time under Coach K.
-The Blue Devils are 10-1 all-time in ACC/Big Ten Challenge games. Duke won its first 10 Challenge games before falling at Wisconsin last season.
-Duke is 3-0 at Cameron Indoor Stadium in ACC/Big Ten Challenge games.
-The Blue Devils are 2-0 against Michigan State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Duke topped the Spartans in 2002 (72-50) and 2003 (81-74).
-Duke (10-1) is the winningest team in Challenge history. Boston College (5-0) is the only team with a higher winning percentage.
-The ACC has won 10 of the first 11 Challenges, including the first 10 in the series.
-The Big Ten won last year’s Challenge, 6-5, with wins from Illinois, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin.
-Entering ACC/Big Ten Challenge play this week, the two conferences have already squared off three
times, with the Big Ten winning each of those matchups. On Nov. 19, Illinois defeated Maryland, a team receiving votes in both polls at the time, 80-76, in the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer at Madison Square Garden. Also that day, Minnesota beat then-No. 8/8 North Carolina, 72-67, at the Puerto Rico Tip-Off. Most recently, Wisconsin defeated Boston College, 65-55, at the Old Spice Classic on Friday.