DURHAM, N.C. – Duke and Michigan State will battle in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019 in East Lansing, Mich., as the matchups for the 21st edition of the event were unveiled Thursday by ESPN.
In a rematch from last season's Elite Eight, the Blue Devils and Spartans will meet for the fifth time in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Duke has won the previous four versus MSU in the event, and owns an 18-2 (.900) record all-time in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, marking both the most wins and best winning percentage.
Duke and Michigan State have meet 15 times in the overall series, with the Blue Devils leading 12-3. Eight of the meetings have come since the 2010-11 season -- three in the Champions Classic (3-0) and twice in the ACC/Big Ten (2-0). MSU’s first win over Duke since 2005 came last season, 68-67, in the NCAA Tournament East Regional title game in Washington, D.C.
Time and network designation for next season’s game will be announced at a later date.
Duke and Michigan State each finished in the top 5 of the final AP poll for 2019, with the Blue Devils earning the program’s eighth final AP No. 1 ranking and the Spartans finishing No. 5.
The Duke Football class of 2012 is up to 14 verbal commitments now, and with only a handful of scholarships remaining, the Blue Devils’ coaching staff is looking to add a few impact players. One such prospect is a highly-coveted offensive lineman from the talent-rich state of Florida. Duke recently hosted 6’5” 275 pound junior Robert Conyers on an unofficial visit in Durham. Conyers is one of the top remaining uncommitted offensive linemen in the class of 2012, with 20 scholarship offers from programs throughout the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, and SEC. As a junior, Conyers helped lead Braddock HS to an 8-2 overall record and the state playoffs. His performance earned 1st Team All-County and 2nd Team All-State honors. Duke Offensive Line Coach Matt Luke is developing a talented group of linemen in Durham, and a potential star like Conyers would be a great late addition to Duke’s class of 2012. [private]
BDN: Can you tell us a little bit about your high school career and your strengths on the field?
Well, I only started playing offensive line at the end of my sophomore year. I went to a bunch of camps, and this past year I made the All-County Team and the 2nd Team All-State. Some of my strengths are just my footwork and my aggression.
BDN: You mentioned that you’ve been able to attend a few camps this year; what are some of the things you’re working on as you head into your senior season?
Just my strength and my pad level.
BDN: I know you have a pretty long offer list, so I won’t ask you to name all of the schools that are interested in you, but where do you currently stand with scholarship offers?
I have about 20 scholarship offers right now. And some of the bigger ones are Michigan State, Duke, USF, Wake Forest, Illinois, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, UCF, and a couple other ones.
BDN: That’s an impressive total. Where would you say you are in your recruiting process right now?
Right now I’m looking to narrow it down. I’m going to visit Michigan State and Illinois and then I’ll have like a top 5 probably after I make that trip.
BDN: Obviously, it will be tough to narrow things down to five schools, but what are the most important things that you are looking for as you evaluate a program?
Just the school’s atmosphere, the coaching staff, and the way I feel when I’m around them and around the other players that are playing there currently.
BDN: Which schools have you had a chance to visit so far and have any stood out to you?
I’ve visited Wake Forest, Duke, Vanderbilt, Georgia, LSU, Florida, Miami…I visited UCF, USF, and some of the schools that are standing out to me are USF, Wake Forest, Duke, just because of their coaching staffs and the total package of the school.
BDN: You mentioned that you’d like to have a top 5 after these next couple of visits. What are your plans for narrowing things down and making a decision from there?
Probably going to take like 2 or 3 official visits, but most likely the middle of my season is when I’m going to make my decision.
BDN: Are there any schools that you think you definitely want to take an official visit to at this point?
I’m still kind of narrowing all that down.
BDN: Is there anything else you want college football fans to know about you?
That I’m only 16.
BDN: Thanks a lot, Robert, and best of luck to you.
While Duke is working hard to improve their defense on the field this spring, the coaching staff is also working hard to upgrade the defense with a talented group of prospects in the class of 2012. Several defensive line prospects have received verbal scholarship offers from the Blue Devils, including one of the top prospects in the country, who took a visit to Duke this spring. Matt Godin is a 6’6” 260 pound defensive lineman from Novi, Michigan. As a junior, Matt helped Catholic Central to a 9-3 record, totaling over 50 tackles. The versatile and athletic lineman is the type of prospect that Duke is targeting in the class of 2012, but the Blue Devils will face competition from Big 10 powers such as Michigan, Michigan State, and Wisconsin, all of which have also offered. Highlights of Matt’s junior year can be viewed here.
BDN: Can you start off by describing your strengths for fans who haven’t had a chance to see you play?
My strengths, definitely my quickness off the ball, and then my swing move.
BDN: You’ve played well both inside and outside in high school; do you have a preference for where you would like to play in college?
It doesn’t really matter. I’ll play both.
BDN: What are some of the things you have been working on this offseason?
Just overall getting stronger and just keeping my quickness up too, so doing speed training and stuff.
BDN: What are some of your goals for your senior year?
BDN: As you look at your college decision, what are the most important factors you are looking for in a school?
Education, and like the overall feel I get from the people around me when I go there, and just like the tradition. I mean, there’s got to be a solid foundation at the school.
BDN: Since you mentioned education being an important factor, is there a particular field you are interested in studying in college?
BDN: Which schools have you been in contact with the longest, or have been hearing the most from?
Actually right before you just called, I got off the phone with Coach Cut[cliffe] over at Duke, and then – mostly just the schools that offered me, I’ve been talking to the most. Cincinnati, Syracuse, Michigan State, Duke, and Buffalo, and then schools that haven’t offered me I’ve mostly been talking to Wisconsin, Oregon, Northwestern and Illinois.
BDN: Have you had a chance to visit any schools so far?
Michigan State, Duke, what else? I went to Michigan a few times, I went to Iowa last year. That’s about it. Oh, I went to Northwestern.
BDN: Do you have any other visits planned for this spring or summer?
I’m gonna be going to Duke again, probably the summer, and then I’m going to Michigan State soon, and then I’m visiting Wisconsin next weekend. Not this weekend, but next weekend, and then I’ll probably make it down to Illinois too.
BDN: Are there any schools that you feel like you’ve developed a good relationship with at this point in the process?
I was impressed with Northwestern, Michigan State, and Duke. All of those 3.
BDN: Was there anything specific that stood out to you about those programs?
I mean, I’m not – not anything specific. Obviously the facilities for all of them were nice, and I like the coaches from all those 3 schools. Probably Duke and Michigan State though, the coaches and just the feel I got from them, kind of stood out the most.
BDN: Do you have an idea for when you would like to make your college decision?
Probably right after the season, or maybe – it’s either gonna be right after the season or right before the season.
BDN: Is there anything else that you think is important for college football fans to know about you?
Distance from where the school is doesn’t matter to me. If I like the school, I’m gonna go. And I have no favorite.
INDIANAPOLIS - Well, we final got settled in to Indianapolis after switching motels at the last minute. One stop at the photo booth and then the media pass later and we are now in Lucas Oil Arena, the home of the Indianapolis Colts.
Coming in the area surrounding the stadium is packed and parking lots are full everywhere. Once inside the arena, the Butler Bulldogs are practicing to a packed house. The Blue Devils take to the floor at 3:10 and the interviews with the team start at 2:30 just before they take to the hardwood.
Of course, BDN will be on the scene all weekend long and it's sure to be a grand time around here, especially if Duke advances. We'll have some pics, interviews, reports and of course we will tweet live during the game provided the option is available.
The Butler Bulldog, a live canine mascot just made its way through the media room and the usual suspects of members who cover Duke are in the house as is my pal Bob Harris. As for the facility itself, it's wonderful and made for a Final Four.
The locals are friendly and team colors abound pretty much everywhere within 30 miles of the arena. The NABC All Star game will take place later this afternoon but with no ACC players in the game, we'll use the time to work.
Coming through West Virginia, we stopped at a local eatery and needless to say we kept it to ourselves that we were Duke beat writers. That is, until one of our entourage felt the need to blurt it out [TMI] just before we ordered and you could see the change in attitudes if you know what I mean.
Interestingly, the morning edition of the Indianapolis Star has a huge headline saying, "Boo Devils," which is yet another article on Duke hatred. However, if one looks beneath the surface or does their research you will find that Duke is quite popular.
We also found out that India Pacer Josh McRoberts is putting up a lot of Dukies at his house this weekend. McRoberts said he stayed in touch with Jordan Davidson and that NBA scheduling conflicts prevented him from getting back to Cameron but the day is coming when he will return.
And fellow Pacer Mike Dunleavy said, "It's cool that the tournament is here in Indy and that Duke is a part of it." Dahntay Jones is also a Pacer and all three will make an effort to make an appearance.
There has already been a Jerry West spotting. The Los Angeles Lakers great was, of course, a star while he was at West Virginia as well. As for other celebs, well, they all turn out for the Final Four.
Finally, if anyone out there thinks Duke doesn't remember their loss to the Mountaineers, think again. You will not see it in their comments, but the memories loom large in many ways which we may share if Duke advances but not until then.
Tom Izzo is on the podium in the background now as West Virginia is having their open practice for fans. Duke Assistant Coach Steve Wojciechowski [Wojo] is taking in the practice for some last minute scouting. The entire lower level has been opened to fans for free and it is packed.
During practices, the schools bands and cheerleaders look on as two huge screens in the corners of Lucas Oil Stadium carry the action.
Duke is about fifteen minutes from holding their open media, so we'll wrap it up for now, but be sure to check in often with BDN all weekend long.