The schedule for the 2019 Big Ten-ACC Challenge was released on Thursday, and Pitt will host former Big East rival Rutgers at the Petersen Events Center on Dec. 3.
2019 Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchups pic.twitter.com/yDCGvfuu1m— Anna Negron (@ItsAnnaNegron) June 6, 2019
”The Big Ten-ACC Challenge is a terrific early season event for college basketball,” Pitt head coach Jeff Capel said in a statement. “We look forward to hosting Rutgers and playing another quality non-conference opponent in the beginning of our season. This game will be a good test for our team as we continue to build our culture here at Pitt.”
The matchup will be the first between Pitt and Rutgers since Jan. 5, 2013, when the Scarlet Knights handed the Panthers a 67-62 loss at the Rutgers Athletic Center in Piscataway, New Jersey. Pitt has gone 19-24 against Rutgers, as the Garden State team dominated the series in the 1960s and 1970s. But 12 of Pitt’s 19 wins have come since the turn of the century.
In addition to reuniting two former conference rivals, the matchup will mark the first time Pitt great and former Panthers assistant coach Brandin Knight has returned to the Petersen Events Center to face his old team since joining the staff of Rutgers in his home state.
While the matchup does present fans with a number of intriguing storylines tied to Pitt’s days in the Big East, it also happens to pit a rebuilding Panthers squad that went 14-19 in Capel’s first year against a long-ailing Scarlet Knights team that has not logged a winning campaign since the 2005-06 season.
In that sense, the game can be viewed as a bit of a dud. But the positive is that the Panthers will get a chance to take on one of the weakest teams in the Big Ten, providing them with an opportunity to log a non-conference win. Last season, Pitt was not so lucky, as it dropped a 69-68 contest to Iowa on the road in the challenge. The game was decided by a last-second miss by Pitt guard Sidy N’Dir.
Broadcast details and the game’s tipoff time were not provided but will be released later.