Virginia Tech to challenge Badgers

Although playing a road game last year in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, Bo Ryan's Wisconsin Badgers will be back on the road in the 2008 challenge, travelling to Blacksburg, Virginia to take on the Hokies.

MADISON - After being beaten handedly at Duke in last year's ACC-Big Ten Challenge, Wisconsin fans were hoping to get a return bout against the Blue Devils in Madison in 2008.

If that rematch is going to happen, Wisconsin fans will have to wait at least a couple more years.

After alternating home and away contests for the last nine years, Wisconsin will be on the road for the second-straight season in the event, facing a first-time opponent in Virginia Tech on Monday, December 1.

In an announcement made by the Big Ten Conference on Tuesday, the Badgers and Hokies were kick off the 10th annual event, an event the Big Ten has never won.

This year will mark the third time in four seasons (and sixth time overall) that the Badgers are playing their ACC/Big Ten Challenge game on the road. Overall, Wisconsin is 3-6 in the event and 0-5 on the road.

Virgina Tech finished the 2007-08 season with a 21-14 record, finishing just out of the NCAA Tournament, and a 9-7 finish in the ACC, good enough for fourth place. That didn't stop the Hokies from having a solid run in the NIT Tournament, losing at home in the quarterfinals to Mississippi, 81-72, a team that lost to Ohio State in the NIT Finals.

The Hokies return a talented group of young players, playing six freshmen in the rotation, led by scorer-to-be A.D. Vassallo (16.9 ppg) freshman Jeff Allen (11.8 ppg).

Virginia Tech also has a talented group of incoming freshmen in post players Victor Davila (6-foot-9, 240 pounds) and Gene Swindle (6-11, 260), two players that could be inserted right into the rotation.

The Badgers won a school-record 31 games last season and has won 61 games over the past two seasons (fifth-most in the nation) and joins North Carolina, UCLA, Memphis and Kansas as the only programs to win at least 30 games each of the past two campaigns.

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