2012 Basketball Conference Schedule Announced
The Big Ten is arguably the best basketball conference in the country. With six teams in ESPN’s early pre-season top 25 — more than any other conference — it’s easy to see why people tout the Big Ten as a basketball powerhouse.
For a program in a rebuilding mode like Penn State, trudging through the top-notch competition of the Big Ten schedule can certainly result in some lumps. That was the case last season as the Lions finished 12-20 overall with just a 4-14 conference record. The Lions, in Pat Chambers’ second year as head coach, will definitely take strides forward this season, but will have to do so with another rigorous Big Ten schedule that was announced earlier today.
Penn State will open their Big Ten slate with two tough tests. They will open the conference schedule on the road for the fourth consecutive season at the Kohl Center against No. 22 Wisconsin on Jan. 3. The Lions will then return home to face No. 1 ranked Indiana at the Bryce Jordan Center on the 7th.
The Indiana game will be the first of 5 ranked opponents to come into the Jordan Center this season, as the Lions will also match up against Michigan State (No. 9), Ohio State (No. 8), Michigan (No. 5), and Wisconsin at home over the course of the season.
The Lions proved last year to be no pushover at the Bryce Jordan Center last season losing games against Michigan, Wisconsin, and Indiana by just 6 points apiece.
The Lions failed to win a game on the road last season, and to take upward strides of growth as a program or even have a chance for postseason play, this will have to change. In addition to the opener against Wisconsin, the road schedule features tests at Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Michigan, Illinois, No. 25 Minnesota, and Northwestern.
The team avoids travelling to East Lansing or Columbus to face Michigan State and Ohio State, as their only matchups with those teams will be at the BJC. Additionally, the Lions will also face off with Illinois and Minnesota only once.
While still being considered one of the lower tier teams in the conference, the Lions definitely have a chance to pull off some upsets. They proved last year to not be a pushover in Pat Chambers’ first year, and hopefully this year that will translate into some close wins as opposed to being on the losing end of numerous close games.
The team returns leading scorer and all-Big Ten point guard Tim Frazier for his senior season. Along with Frazier, the Lions will feature a formidable backcourt with Southern Miss transfer DJ Newbill being eligible to play after sitting out last season due to NCAA transfer rules and junior Jermaine Marshall coming off a strong season (10.8 ppg). With continued development from frontcourt players Jon Graham and Ross Travis along with some solid production from the incoming freshmen, look for Chambers’ Nittany Lions to take another step forward and flirt with a .500 overall record with a few more conference wins.
Penn State’s full 2012-13 schedule:
- Nov. 3 – vs. Philadelphia University (exhibition)
- Nov. 9- vs. St. Francis University (PA)
- Nov. 15- vs. NC State (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
- Nov. 16- vs. Providence/UMass (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
- Nov. 18- TBD (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
- Nov. 23- vs. Bucknell
- Nov. 28- vs. Boston College (ACC/Big Ten Challenge)
- Dec. 1- vs. Penn
- Dec. 5- at La Salle
- Dec. 8- vs. Army
- Dec. 15- vs. Delaware State
- Dec. 23- vs. New Hampshire
- Dec. 29- vs. Duquesne
- Jan. 3- at Wisconsin
- Jan. 7- vs. Indiana
- Jan. 10- vs. Northwestern
- Jan. 13- at Purdue
- Jan. 16- vs. Michigan State
- Jan. 19- vs. Nebraska
- Jan. 23- at Indiana
- Jan. 26- vs. Ohio State
- Jan. 31- at Iowa
- Feb. 5- vs. Purdue
- Feb. 9- at Nebraska
- Feb. 14- vs. Iowa
- Feb. 17- at Michigan
- Feb. 21- at Illinois
- Feb. 27- vs. Michigan
- Mar. 2- at Minnesota
- Mar. 7- at Northwestern
- Mar. 10- vs. Wisconsin