Penn State Set for No. 17 Maryland
Host Preston Shoemaker, Trent Fye, Andre Magaro, and Tommy Calpin discuss the Nittany Lions upcoming contest against Maryland:
The 17th-ranked Maryland Terrapins travel to Happy Valley to take on the Penn State Nittany Lions on Wednesday night. This will be a highly contested matchup between two basketball teams that have played fantastic in the month of February. A month ago analysts would predict that Maryland would win in a blowout fashion, but with the way Penn State has been playing as of late, it's a different story.
Both Penn State and Maryland are 4-2 in their last six games and both teams have very solid defense. Penn State is 11-16 overall and 4-12 in the Big Ten while Maryland is 21-7 overall and 12-5 in the Big Ten.
Penn State averages 69.8 points per game and 36.1 rebounds per game. Maryland averages 72.5 points per game and 39.8 rebounds per game. Maryland sweeps the floor with the stats, which puts Penn State at the disadvantage. The end result of this game will be determined by who wins the turnover battle. As Charles Matthews of Michigan said after the loss to Penn State, the reason they lost the game is that they lost the turnover battle. Both teams are even with three players in double-digit scoring averages. In the six-game span where both teams are 4-2, the Maryland Terrapins average 63.5 points a game. The Penn State Nittany Lions average 74.3 points per game. The Nittany Lions have the hotter hand in scoring in recent weeks, which puts momentum on their side. The stats don’t determine the game, but it’s a good indicator of how the game could potentially turn out.
Players To Watch
Anthony Cowen Jr., a 6-foot junior, is seventh in the Big Ten in scoring with an even 16 points per game. Maryland has two of the better forwards in the game. Bruno Fernandez, a 6-foot-10 sophomore, averages a stunning 10.6 rebounds to go along with 14.4 points per game. The other big man is Jalen Smith, a 6-foot-10 freshman, who averages 6.6 rebounds a game and scores 11.3 points per game to top it off.
Penn State, on the other hand, has one of the best forwards in the nation to go along with a crew of defensive stars. Lamar Stevens, a 6-foot-8 junior, is second in the Big Ten in total points with 19.7 and even eight rebounds to top it off, which also leads the team. Penn State’s 6-foot-5 senior guard Josh Reeves has come on late in the season. He averages 2.4 steals per game, which is best in the Big Ten and scores 10.1 points per game as well. If Penn State has a chance in this game, it will have to come by the defensive play of Reeves and Stevens. Look for the forwards Mike Watkins and John Harrar to play a key role in man to man against Fernandez and Smith.
Both teams are coming into this game on a hot streak by winning two straight. Penn State has the hotter hand in the last six games, so expect them to end the night at the Bryce Jordan Center with a win over No. 17 Maryland. Penn State is bound for a lower scoring game than they are used to.
Penn State wins 66-59
Trent Fye is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism, to contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.