Game Grades: Penn State vs. Boston College

Story posted December 3, 2015 in CommRadio, Sports by Joseph Esquivel-Murphy

As the Big Ten/ACC challenge wraps up, the Penn State Nittany Lions took on the Eagles of Boston College and emerged victorious with a score 67-58.

Here are my game grades for Penn State in their game against Boston College.

Back Court: B

Sophomore guard Shep Garner carried the Nittany Lions to a victory over the Eagles, scoring 30 points on only 16 shots, including 8-12 from the three point line. Garner was impressive throughout the night, accumulating a pair of steals and three assists. Freshman guard Josh Reaves continues to struggle offensively, scoring only six points and missing all three of his three point attempts. He has yet to hit a three this season and this game marks the fifth time he has scored less than 10 points. Reaves shot less than 50% from the floor, which he has done in every game this season. His defensive performance was fantastic against Florida transfer Eli Carter, limiting him to seven points. The Penn State backcourt had a good game, but the poor offensive performance from Reaves keeps their grade from being an A.

Front Court: D

The starting frontcourt for Penn State had a terrible game against Boston College, combining to score 11 points on 15 shots. Julian Moore had the worst game out of the trio, failing to register a point and securing three rebounds in only nine minutes of action. Payton Banks had nine points, which was the second highest on the team, but it took him eight shot attempts and another game shooting under 50%, which he has also done in every game this year. Brandon Taylor was saddled with foul trouble throughout the game, leaving him with only two points, the first time he has failed to score double digits in a game. Their defensive performance was not much better as the starting backcourt only secured one block and allowed Dennis Clifford and A.J. Turner to score 32 points. The starting frontcourt did not do a great job of controlling the glass and their grade shows that they are a work in progress.

Bench: A

The bench unit for Penn State was the most impressive thing of the night after Garner’s performance as they outscored the Boston College bench 20-8. Devin Foster only scored two points, but he secured five rebounds and played great defense against the Boston College frontcourt. Big men Donovan Jack and Jordan Dickerson controlled the paint when they were in the game, combining for 18 points and 14 rebounds. Deividas Zemgulis and Isaiah Washington did not play a whole lot and only contributed two missed shots, two rebounds and four personal fouls. The trio of Jack, Dickerson and Foster had a tremendous game and were a big part of the Penn State victory and deserve a high grade.

Coaching: B+

Head coach Patrick Chambers did a great job of stopping the three point shooting of Boston College, limiting them to 33%, an encouraging sign for a team that struggled defending the three ball against Duquesne and Radford. His game plan offensively was incomplete as Garner exploded for 30 points on 16 shots, but the rest of the team only had 37 points on 35 shots. The work on the glass was superb by the Nittany Lions, allowing only three offensive rebounds and having a +13 rebounding margin in the game. Penn State had 10 turnovers, which is good for a team playing on the road, but only forced five, meaning Chambers is going to have to find ways to turnover good teams when conference play starts.

As a whole, Penn State played a great game against Boston College and their performance is encouraging as Big Ten conference play starts in less than a month.

Joseph Esquivel-Murphy is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism and Spanish. To contact him, email