I found the announcement of Northwestern's ACC/Big Ten Challenge time slot and station designation to be a rare positive in the Wildcats' television coverage. Northwestern is going to be playing on Tuesday, November 30, 2010 against Georgia Tech on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. EST.
The Wildcats avoided the dreaded ESPNU slots, which was given to the Indiana vs. Boston College snoozer that's slated for that Wednesday night and the Iowa at Wake Forest blowout on Tuesday night. Also, while 6 p.m. CT is going to be a bit early for the fans at Welsh-Ryan Arena, because it is a home game for the Wildcats, it will lead to some great television exposure. The game going opposite Northwestern's on ESPN is Ohio State at Florida State, and there was no way that the Wildcats would have had more pull than two big state schools with NCAA Tournament aspirations.
One of the premiere games of the challenge is North Carolina at Illinois. That game is on right after the OSU-FSU game, so I'd expect a big audience to tune in. It should be some great exposure for the Fighting Illini and an excellent early test of the strength of the conference against a young, but very talented, Tar Heels squad.
I'll be previewing the entire challenge, plus predictions, as we get closer to the event. If you haven't seen it yet, the entire schedule is after the jump.
Monday, November 29
Virginia at Minnesota - 7pm ET on ESPN2
Tuesday, November 30
Iowa at Wake Forest - 7 p.m. ET on ESPNU
Georgia Tech at Northwestern - 7 p.m. ET on ESPN2
Ohio State at Florida State - 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN
Michigan at Clemson - 9 p.m. ET on ESPN2
North Carolina at Illinois - 9:30 p.m. ET on ESPN
Wednesday, December 1
Indiana at Boston College - 7:15 p.m. ET on ESPNU
NC State at Wisconsin - 7:15 p.m. ET on ESPN2
Purdue at Virginia Tech - 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN
Maryland at Penn State - 9:15 p.m. ET on ESPN2
Michigan State at Duke - 9:30 p.m. ET on ESPN