Iowa-Virginia To Play In Big Ten/ACC Men’s Basketball Challenge

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa men’s basketball team will play at Virginia on Monday, Nov. 29, as part of the 2021 Big Ten/ACC Men’s Basketball Challenge.

Game times and television information will be announced at a later date. 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. The Big Ten won last season’s Challenge, 7-5.

The Hawkeyes have won six of their last eight Challenge games, dating back to 2013. Iowa has won its last three Challenge contests, beating North Carolina (93-80) in 2020 and Pitt (69-68) in 2018 in Iowa City and winning at Syracuse (68-54) in 2019.

This will be the fourth overall meeting between the two programs and first time Iowa will play Virginia in the 23 years of the event. The Hawkeyes won the first two meetings against the Cavaliers: 73-60 in the 1997 NCAA Tournament First Round in Salt Lake City and 75-64 in the 2013 NIT Quarterfinals in Charlottesville, Virginia. The Cavaliers topped Iowa in the last meeting at the 2016 Emerald Coast Classic in Niceville, Florida.

Iowa registered a 22-9 overall record and finished third in the Big Ten Conference with a 14-6 mark a year ago. The Hawkeyes, who advanced to the second round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament, led the NCAA in assists per game (19.2) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.02), and ranked fifth in scoring offense (83.7). Its assist-to-turnover ratio established a new NCAA single-season record, while its scoring average was the program’s highest in 32 years. The Hawkeyes return multiple upperclassmen and a number of players with starting experience.

Head Coach Tony Bennett guided Virginia to an 18-7 overall record and its 10th Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title with a 13-4 league mark. The Cavaliers advanced to the ACC Tournament Semifinals and earned its seventh consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance, falling to Ohio University in the first round as a No. 4 seed. The Cavaliers lose the top three scorers from a year ago in redshirt seniors Sam Hauser (16.0) and Jay Huff (13.0) and Trey Murphy III (11.3), who decided to forgo his remaining eligibility and enter the 2021 NBA Draft. Starting guards Kihei Clark and Reece Beekman averaged 9.5 points and 4.7 points, respectively, last season.

In addition to Virginia, the Hawkeyes are scheduled to face Utah State on Dec. 18, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Iowa’s remaining 2021-22 schedule will be announced at a later date.

The 2021 Challenge schedule is listed below:

Monday, Nov. 29
Iowa at Virginia
Notre Dame at Illinois

Tuesday, Nov. 30
Indiana at Syracuse
Minnesota at Pitt
Northwestern at Wake Forest
Duke at Ohio State
Florida State at Purdue
Clemson at Rutgers

Wednesday, Dec. 1
Wisconsin at Georgia Tech
Nebraska at N.C. State
Miami at Penn State
Louisville at Michigan State
Virginia Tech at Maryland
Michigan at North Carolina