Game Preview: Penn State vs. Nebraska
Penn State Men’s Basketball is hitting the road this week as they travel to Pinnacle Bank Arena to face off against Nebraska. The game will tip-off on Thursday at 9 p.m. and will air on ESPN2.
Penn State limps into the contest having lost four of its last six games, with a 7-8 (0-4) record. They are coming off of their worst loss of the season, a 71-52 game vs Wisconsin. Junior forward Lamar Stevens led the team in scoring with 22 points. He was the only Nittany Lion to put up double figures.
Stevens has been a workhorse for Penn State this season, averaging 35.7 minutes and 18.9 points in 15 games this season. However, the team has struggled finding a consistent complement to Stevens’ game.
The Penn State trio of freshman guards have all failed to maintain consistent numbers this season. Rasir Bolton, who averages 13.1 points per game, only scored seven points on 2-10 shooting against Wisconsin. Myles Dread scored nine on 3-of-7 3-point shooting, and Myreon Jones tacked on one point in 17 minutes.
Penn State will need these freshmen to be on their game to win against Nebraska. Spreading the offense will allow Stevens space to work inside and give the Nittany Lions open kick out shots from behind the arc.
Penn State head coach Patrick Chambers will be returning to the floor after his one game suspension for pushing Myles Dread during a timeout in the Michigan game.
Nebraska enters the contest with at 11-4 (1-3) record. After losing its last two games to Big Ten opponents Maryland and Iowa, Nebraska is looking to rebound against Penn State. This was the first time the Cornhuskers have lost back-to-back games this season, and it cost them to drop out of the AP Top 25.
Nebraska is led by senior guard James Palmer Jr. Palmer is the second leading scorer in the Big Ten averaging 20.1 points per game. The Cornhuskers also rely on senior forward Isaac Copeland Jr., who led the team in scoring against Iowa with 24 and averages 14.7 per game.
Expect the Cornhuskers to try to get the 3-ball working early. This veteran lineup has been successful behind the arc this season, shooting 36.4 percent. This Tim Miles-led Cornhuskers team should be more than capable of putting the past behind them as they look to get back on track in the Big 10.
Defensively, Penn State will need to find answers for Nebraska’s talented seniors. With Copeland Jr. being a force inside, it creates space for their shooters to find open looks. Penn State will need to anticipate this and continue to play a strong defense.
After a terrible loss to Wisconsin, Pat Chambers will have Penn State motivated and hungry for their first Big 10 victory. With their offensive woes and Nebraska’s high scoring offense, Penn State has their work cut out for them. Nebraska is undefeated at home this season.
Preston Shoemaker is a Freshman majoring in Broadcast Journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.