May 2, 2006 - by
Florida State To Face Wisconsin In 2006 ACC/Big Ten Challenge

May 2, 2006

The Florida State men’s basketball team will play at Wisconsin on Nov. 28, 2006 in the eighth annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge as the 11 matchups for the event were released by ESPN on Tuesday. Considered to be one of the featured games during the three-night event, the Seminoles and Badgers will play for the first time since 1961 at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wisc. in a game nationally televised on espn2.

All-America candidate Al Thornton, who earned All-ACC Second-Team Honors in 2005, returns to lead a very talented group of veterans onto the court for the Seminoles in 2006. Practice begins on Oct. 15 in preparation for teh season.

The event will feature 11 games from 11 different college campuses with all 11 games being televised on either ESPN, espn2 or ESPNU. Since 2000, these two conference have combined to make 13 Final Four appearances and captured four of the last seven NCAA Championships. In addition, the ACC and the Big Ten rank either first or second in all-time NCAA Tournament bids, victories and final four appearances.

Florida State has a 5-2 record in seven previous ACC/Big Ten Challenge events and is undefeated, 4-0, under Head Coach Leonard Hamilton. The Seminoles have won four straight games in the challenge series with victories over Iowa (80-67 in 2002), Northwestern (71-53 in 2003), Minnesota (70-69 in 2004) and Purdue (97-57 in 2005). In facing Wisconsin, the Seminoles are playing their fifth different opponent in the challenge. Florida State has a 2-1 record against Northwestern, is 1-1 against Minnesota and is 1-0 against Iowa and Purdue. Florida State is 2-1 in road games during the event with a victory (in 1999) and a loss (in 2001) on the road against Northwestern and a win at Minnesota (in 2005). Florida State defeated Northwestern, 60-46, in the inaugural ACC/Big 10 Challenge in 1999 and gained the largest margin of victory in the history of the challenge against Purdue last season with a 97-57 (+40 point) victory at home.

With the Seminoles’ 97-57 victory over Purdue in the 2005 ACC/Big Ten Challenge, Hamilton remained undefeated in the annual clash between two of the top conferences in the nation. Hamilton is one of only three coaches in the history of the event with an undefeated 4-0 record (he is joined by Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski (7-0) and Clemson’s Oliver Purnell (2-0) as unbeaten coaches in the challenge. Florida State’s current four-game winning streak in the challenge is third only to Duke (current seven straight) and Wake Forest (five straight from 1999-2003).

The ACC, which won the event by a 6-5 margin last season, has won the Commissioner’s Cup during each of the first seven years of the event. With the expansion of the ACC in recent years the event has increased to 11 games and 22 teams from nine games and 18 games during the first six years of the event.

Monday, Nov. 27                                      Wednesday, Nov. 29
7 p.m.      Michigan at NC State, espn2              7 p.m.     Michigan State at Boston College, ESPN
                                                     7:30 p.m.  Virginia at Purdue, espn2
Tuesday, Nov. 28                                     8 p.m.     Iowa at Virginia Tech, ESPNU
7 p.m.      Maryland at Illinois, ESPN               9 p.m.     Ohio State at North Carolina, ESPN
7:30 p.m.   Florida State at Wisconsin, espn2        9:30 p.m.  Clemson at Minnesota, espn2
8 p.m.      Penn State at Georgia Tech, ESPNU
9 p.m.      Indiana at Duke, ESPN
9:30 p.m.   Miami at Northwestern, espn2

Dec. 1, 1999           Nov. 29, 2000         Nov. 28, 2001            Dec. 2, 2002
Florida State 60       at Florida State 71   Florida State 50         at Florida State 80
at Northwestern 46     Minnesota 76          at Northwestern 57       Iowa 67

Dec. 1, 2003           Nov. 30, 2004         Nov. 29, 2005            Nov. 28, 2006
at Florida State 71    Florida State 70      at Florida State 97      Florida State
Northwestern 53        at Minnesota 69       Purdue 57                at Wisconsin
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