Penn State Basketball has been wildly confusing this entire season. At times looking like a shoe-in for the NCAA Tournament, then at other times looking like a Division III squad. Unfortunately for Penn State fans, this feels all too familiar.
Penn State Hoops has been disappointing for nearly the entire season, but once again ends the season winning some big games. They started the season 0-10 in Big Ten play, but the Nittany Lions have won five of their last seven games. These wins include a domination over No. 24 Maryland, and another impressive win over No. 7 Michigan.
Winning these big games late give fans hope for the next season, only to be disappointed yet again. We all remember what happened last year when Penn State won the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) and fans felt the team would have no problem making it tor the NCAA Tournament for the 2018-2019 season. Unfortunately, Tony Carr declared for the NBA Draft and it was all downhill from there.
These late wins that cause hope for fans also prevents administration from ever fixing the problem. Perhaps that is why in late January, head coach Pat Chambers was unworried about his job security, even though his team was 7-13 and 0-9 in Big Ten play. He knew if he could win a couple of big games at the end of the year, which this team is notorious for, he would have nothing to worry about. Now, here we are again.
While I hope and pray that things may be different this year and Chambers may finally walk the plank, it would not be surprising to see him coaching the team again come November. I love Pat Chambers and the energy he brings to the team, but there is no way that this team will be anything more than mediocre if he remains the coach. The organization needs a change if they want to be legitimate contenders.
Most recently, Penn State Basketball barely edged Rutgers on the road, 66-65. The Nittany Lions who led by 20 in the second half found themselves on the ropes at the end of the game. They were able to hold on behind Lamar Stevens’ 18 points and five rebounds. Rasir Bolton added 11 points, four rebounds, and three assists while Mike Watkins contributed eight points, 14 rebounds, and three blocks.
The win marked Penn State’s sixth in Big Ten play and gives them a chance to secure a first-round Big Ten Tournament bye. A win on Saturday against Illinois, plus some help around the conference, will give them the bye that they want.