Iowa native Marcus Paige will face the Iowa Hawkeyes next season in Chapel Hill.
Iowa native Marcus Paige will face the Iowa Hawkeyes next season in Chapel Hill.
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Tar Heels To Face Iowa In ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Release: 05/01/2014

CHAPEL HILL -- North Carolina will host Iowa in the Smith Center as part of the 16th annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge Presented by DICK'S Sporting Goods, played over three days from December 1-3.  UNC and Iowa will meet on Wednesday Dec. 3 at a time to be determined.

ESPN announced the pairings on Thursday afternoon as part of an expanded format of 14 games—two more than previous Challenges—and the debut of Louisville in the ACC and Maryland and Rutgers as members of the Big Ten.

The Tar Heels will be facing Iowa for the first time in the event and for the first time overall since the 2004-05 season.  The Hawkeyes lead the all-time series with Carolina, 2-1.  UNC beat Iowa 106-92 on Nov. 24, 2004, in the championship game of the Maui Invitational behind the MVP performance of junior point guard Raymond Felton.  The Tar Heels went on to win the NCAA championship three months later in St. Louis.  

Iowa beat the Tar Heels twice in a home-and-home series in the late 1980s.  On Jan. 7, 1989, the Hawkeyes beat UNC in the Smith Center.  Iowa downed Carolina again in the return engagement in Iowa City.

ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will combine to televise all 14 games of the three-day event matching top college basketball programs playing for conference supremacy and the Commissioners Cup. All 14 games will also be available via WatchESPN.

Three of the games will feature a showdown between teams ranked in an early preseason top 25 poll: No. 2 Duke at No. 4 Wisconsin, No. 25 Iowa at No. 6 North Carolina and No. 21 Syracuse at No. 24 Michigan. Additional teams in the Challenge that made the poll include No. 7 Virginia, No. 8 Louisville and No. 18 Michigan State.

All 14 Big Ten teams and 14 of the 15 ACC teams will participate in the 2014 Challenge. Boston College will not play in the 2014 event.

The ACC and Big Ten have split the past two events, winning six Challenge games each in 2012 and 2013. In the event of a tie, the Commissioner's Cup remains with the conference that won the previous year, which was the Big Ten in 2011. The ACC won the first 10 Challenges (1999-2008) while the Big Ten won the next three (2009-2011).

2014 ACC/Big Ten Challenge schedule (times and networks will be announced in August):



Mon, Dec 1

Nebraska at Florida State


Rutgers at Clemson

Tue, Dec 2

Syracuse at Michigan


Ohio State at Louisville


Pittsburgh at Indiana


NC State at Purdue


Illinois at Miami


Minnesota at Wake Forest

Wed, Dec 3

Duke at Wisconsin


Michigan State at Notre Dame


Iowa at North Carolina


Virginia at Maryland


Georgia Tech at Northwestern


Virginia Tech at Penn State

UNC North Carolina Men's Basketball

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