The first night of the Big Ten-ACC Challenge was yesterday, and the made-for-ESPN event will wrap up this evening. The Big Ten is off to a 4-2 lead so far, and has to win at least two of tonight’s games to claim victory for the season. And a tie goes to the Big Ten, since they’re defending champions from last year, but hopefully it won’t come to that.
When the World Series came around this year, I wanted the Cardinals to win, despite my personal distaste for them, because they were the National league team. By the same token, even though I loathe Michigan, strongly dislike Ohio State, and have a personal antipathy for the blue and orange of Illinois, I wanted them to win their games (and two of the three came through last night, too). My school held up their end of the bargain, and in the early days of this challenge that usually wasn’t the case.
I give credit to the Big Ten Network for tying the schools together in some meaningful way. They’ve been successful at this because the Big Ten represents the Great Lakes and midwest region of the country, just like the SEC does with the South, and the Big East does with the East coast. The ACC has long fancied itself as the premier basketball conference in the country, so anytime they can be disabused of that notion, it can only be a good thing for the rest of us. And Duke getting blown out? That’s a rare treat.
I’ll be back tomorrow to wrap up tonight’s games. But in the meantime, Go Big Ten!