UNIVERSITY PARK - With a tough loss over the weekend, the Nittany Lions mens’ basketball squad fell to 6-2 on the season. But they've already turned their attention to Tuesday, when they take on undefeated Pitt in the B1G-ACC Challenge. Penn State coach Pat Chambers hopes that that game will prepare them for their conference schedule.
“[The game is] great for us!,” says Chambers. “I know you guys think I'm crazy - and maybe I am - but I want this game. You know what I mean? I want to play in Petersen. That is one of the most hardest places to play. No matter what the outcome is, that is getting us ready for what we're gonna see at Michigan State, at Purdue, at Indiana. At all those places on the road. It's great preparation."
Chambers hopes the team can work on finishing drives. 26% of their rebounds are offensive boards. Coach says they need to do better.
"Offensive rebounds lead to 3's,” says Chambers. “Offensive rebounds lead to fouls. We've been monitoring that or charting it, however you want to say it. And it hasn't been very good for us. When we give up those offensive rebounds. We've got to get better at that."
Pitt and Penn State haven't played since 2005. Chambers hopes this game is one of many to come. He says he and Pitt coach Jamie Dixon are hoping to add the rivalry game to the schedule in the future. For now, the conferences put this one together. And that's the only game they're thinking about.
"I think these guys are ready to go,” says Chambers. “[Monday] we'll get after it a little bit. We'll break a sweat and get some shots up in Pittsburgh. And then go out and compete tomorrow."
Pitt is the favorite tomorrow night, but Penn State has won 4 of their last 6 B1G-ACC Challenge games.