MADISON, Wis. -- Following Wisconsin’s Final Four run this past season, coupled with the loss of just one starter from a team that went on to earn the second-most single-season wins in UW history (30), many have billed the Badgers as a top-five team heading into 2014-15.
Wisconsin will square off with another team unanimously projected for the top-five when the Badgers welcome Duke to the Kohl Center on Wednesday, Dec. 3 as part of the 2014 ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
"We're excited to welcome Duke back to the Kohl Center," head coach Bo Ryan said. "I've known Mike Krzyzewski for a long time and have a lot of respect for him and his program. Excuse the play on words, but this will be a challenging match-up for us. We always try to put together a tough non-conference schedule that will get us ready for Big Ten play, and this certainly fits that category. We have tremendous fans that fill the Kohl Center every game and it's exciting to be able to reward them with a another big-time match-up like this."
According to Eammon Brennan’s ESPN.com 2014-15 preseason poll, Wisconsin is ranked No. 4, just two spots behind Duke (No. 2).
The Wisconsin-Duke match-up also pits two of college basketball’s most respected head coaches against one another. Mike Krzyzewski, the Division I all-time wins leader (984), ranks second in win percentage (.763) among active head coaches with 600 wins, just one spot ahead of Bo Ryan (.759). The tandem also represents two of the five active Division I coaches to reach the prestigious 700-win plateau.
Coming off of a 48-38 win at Virginia last season, the Badgers own the most victories (7) among Big Ten teams during the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Duke, which owns the ACC’s most wins (13) and best win percentage (.867) during the challenge, upended Michigan at home during last season’s annual series.
One of the Blue Devils’ losses occurred the last time they came to the Kohl Center in 2009, as Wisconsin upset then No. 6 ranked Duke, 73-69, helping the Big Ten capture its first victory in the challenge. The teams also met in the 2007 Big Ten/ACC Challenge with Duke claiming an 82-58 win.
The Big Ten is unbeaten in the last five ACC/Big Ten Challenges after last season’s series resulted in a tie for the second-consecutive season. After winning the first 10 challenges, the ACC owns a 10-3-2 mark since the inception of the series in 1999.
2014 ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Monday, December 1st
· Nebraska @ Florida State
· Rutgers @ Clemson
Tuesday, December 2nd
· Illinois @ Miami
· Minnesota @ Wake Forest
· NC State @ Purdue
· Ohio State @ Louisville
· Pittsburgh @ Indiana
· Syracuse @ Michigan
Wednesday, December 3rd
· Duke @ Wisconsin
· Georgia Tech @ Northwestern
· Iowa @ North Carolina
· Michigan State @ Notre Dame
· Virginia @ Maryland
· Virginia Tech @ Penn State
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