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Mike Watkins Made Available For Penn State Hoops

At Penn State Hoops’ weekly press conference, head coach Pat Chambers said that junior forward Mike Watkins is “available,” but a game-time decision for the matchup on Tuesday with No. 13 Virginia Tech. 

Chambers explained that Watkins has done enough to earn his spot back, although he will be closely monitored on the court as his conditioning is a concern for the coaching staff. 

The program suspended Watkins indefinitely before the season after he was cited for disorderly conduct at the McDonald’s in downtown State College. Over the summer, he was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.

After his suspension, the big man opened up about his struggles with bipolar disorder and depression. Chambers defended Watkins following his suspension.

“At what point does somebody get into trouble so many times that you can’t depend on them as a leader and a consistent player for your team?” asked reporter Mark Brennan of Fight On State earlier this season. 

“We’re trying to help and guide. We’re trying to give a kid a chance,” Chambers said. “Let us do our due diligence. Let us give a kid a chance. If not, he’s going to wind up back on the street.”

The Nittany Lions will be happy to have Watkins back. His presence in the paint should make a big difference for a squad that has lost two of its last three games. Watkins averaged 12.1 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 2.3 blocks per game during his redshirt sophomore season.

The Nittany Lions take on the visiting Hokies on Tuesday at 7 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

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About the Author

Derek Bannister

Derek is a senior majoring in Economics and History. He is legally required to tell you that he's from right outside of Philly. Email Derek compliments and dad-jokes at [email protected].

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