Photo by Mark Selders

IU basketball: Penn State game day essentials as Hoosiers go for first road win

Game Day Essentials

Indiana (10-2, 1-1) at Penn State (5-5, 0-2)

  • Tip Time: 4:00 p.m. Eastern
  • Location: Bryce Jordan Center, University Park, Pa.
  • Television: BTN (Jason Horowitz and Len Elmore)
  • IU Radio Network: IU Radio Network
  • Stream:  Fox Sports Live
  • Point Spread: Indiana is a 2.5-point favorite
  • KenPom Projected Score: No. 29 Indiana 65 No. 85 Penn State 63
  • Series: Indiana leads 41-12

Mike Woodson on Playing on the Road

IU head coach Mike Woodson was asked what it will take for his team to pick up their first road win.

“Well, just put a 40-minute game together,” Woodson said. “I thought against Wisconsin we played all the way up to a minute and 40 where we were up two, got the ball, and we lose the ball, they come down and hit a three. We didn’t recover from it.

“To me, I mean, when you’re out on the road, you got to play all the way through. You can’t think that you’re just going to win it in 38. It’s a 40-minute game, man. We just didn’t complete the game against Wisconsin. We got to put a 40-minute ballgame together, period, from beginning to the end.”

Penn State Coming off a Long Layoff

The Nittany Lions are set to play their first game in 22 days when Indiana comes to town Sunday afternoon. After playing at Michigan State on Dec. 11, the Nittany Lions had a break from midweek action due to final exams before Penn State’s two scheduled games against VCU (Dec. 18) and Quinnipiac (Dec. 22) were cancelled due to COVID-19 within Penn State’s program.

Following the holiday break, the Nittany Lions’ Dec. 29 non-conference finale against Delaware State was cancelled due to COVID-19 with the Hornets’ program.

Penn State’s Roster

Meet Micah Shrewsberry

A pair of first-year head coaches will face-off on Sunday.

Penn State announced the hiring of former Purdue Associate Head Coach Micah Shrewsberry as the 14th men’s basketball head coach in Penn State history. Shrewsberry comes to Penn State with a wealth of experience as an assistant coach for a pair of nationally ranked programs and in the NBA. He also has two years of head coaching experience.

Shrewsberry spent the last two seasons with Big Ten foe Purdue University as the associate head coach. As the offensive coordinator, Shrewsberry helped lead the Boilermakers to a fourth-place finish with a 13-6 Big Ten record in 2020-21. Purdue finished with an 18-9 overall mark and earned an NCAA Tournament berth.

Prior to his time at Purdue, Shrewsberry spent six seasons (2013-19) with the NBA’s Boston Celtics as an assistant coach. During his tenure, the Celtics reached the playoffs in five consecutive seasons, including back-to-back appearances in the Eastern Conference Finals in 2017 and 2018.

Shrewsberry’s first stint as an assistant coach at Purdue spanned the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.

The Indianapolis native spent four seasons at Butler University under head coach Brad Stevens. He started his time with the Bulldogs as the coordinator of basketball operations before serving as an assistant coach for three seasons. With Shrewsberry on the bench, the Bulldogs compiled an 87-21 record, won two Horizon League regular-season championships and two Horizon League Tournament titles, and made three NCAA Tournament appearances. During Shrewsberry’s time at Butler, the Bulldogs reached the 2010 and 2011 National Championship games.

Another Close One?

The last 10 games between Penn State and Indiana have been close battles, being decided by an average of just 5.1 points per game. Indiana has won seven of the last 10 meetings dating back to 2014, but those seven wins have come by just an average of 4.3 point per game, with one overtime contest (Dec. 30, 2020) and one triple-overtime game (Feb. 1, 2017). Last year’s sole meeting saw Penn State battle back from a 12-point deficit to force overtime, but the Hoosiers emerged with the 87-85 victory in Bloomington.

Penn State Notes

  • Penn State wrapped up non-conference play with a 5-3 record.  All five of Penn State’s non-conference victories came by double digits – Youngstown St. (75-59), St. Francis Brooklyn (74-59), Cornell (85-74), Oregon State (60-45) and Wagner (74-54).
  • PSU fell on the road to UMass (56- 81) in the second game of the season, but the Nittany Lions’ other two non-conference losses were close five-point games. Penn State took LSU, a team currently ranked #16 in the AP Poll, to overtime before falling 63- 68. The Nittany Lions fell to Miami in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge 58-63.
  • In Big Ten play the Nittany Lions lost to Ohio State 76-64, and at Michigan State, 80-64.
  • Penn State’s defense has held five of its last seven opponents at least 10 points under their season scoring averages.
  • Over the last seven games, Penn State has limited its opponents to a 41.7 percent (172- 412) clip from the field and 30.6 percent (49-160) mark from 3-point range.
  • Penn State held four of its first nine opponents under 60 points, and five of its first nine foes under 60 points in regulation — LSU scored 58 in regulation and finished with 68 including overtime.
  • The Nittany Lions are shooting 37.8 percent (48-127) from deep with an average of 9.6 made threes per game in Penn State’s five wins.  They are shooting 28.1 percent (32-114) from downtown with an average of 6.4 treys per game in the Nittany Lions’ five losses.
  • John Harrar and Illinois All-American Kofi Cockburn are the only two Big Ten men’s basketball players averaging a double-double thus far into the season. Harrar owns season-long marks of 11.4 points and 10.6 rebounds per game. His 10.6 rebounds per game ranks seventh nationally.
  • Senior transfer Jalen Pickett is averaging 14.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 4.6 apg over the last seven contests.
  • The average age of Penn State’s 15-man roster on the official Nov. 9 start date of the 2021-22 college basketball season (Penn State opened on Nov. 10) was 21.61 years old. Penn State is believed to be the sixth-oldest Division I team in the country this season, oldest Power 5 team, and oldest team in the Big Ten.
  • The Nittany Lions have no freshmen on their roster and are bolstered by seven players who have played three or more years of college basketball. Penn State’s eight newcomers, seven of whom have played college basketball at their previous schools, combine to bring 4,332 career points to Happy Valley, which is believed to rank fourth in the nation in 2021-22 incoming transfer class scoring.

Penn State KenPom Notable Numbers

Overall – No. 85

Offensive Efficiency – No. 89

Defensive Efficiency – No. 86

  • Methodical offense – Penn State averages 19.9 seconds per possession, the No. 347 slowest nationally
  • High turnover rate – The Nittany Lions turn it over on 19.9 percent of possessions, No. 228
  • Not many free throws – PSU’s free throws attempts as a percentage of field goal attempts ranks No. 283
  • Effective from two – Penn State makes 55.1 percent of its 2-pointers, No. 31 nationally
  • A lot of threes – 44.5 percent of PSU’s shots are from three, No. 56 nationally.  They make just 33.2 percent from deep, No. 184.
  • Not turning anyone over – Penn State is forcing turnovers on just 14.4 percent of defensive possessions, No. 347.
  • Not fouling – Opponents free throw attempts are just 21.8 percent of their field goal attempts, No. 22.
  • Not blocking shots – The Nittany Lions’ block rate is just 4.6 percent, No. 345.

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