Hoop Preview — Wisconsin

<B>Penn State vs. No. 18 Wisconsin <P>Bryce Jordan Center</B> <P><B>Game Time:</B> 8:00 p.m., Saturday

Ed DeChellis Audio (WMV)

Records: Penn State 7-12, 1-5; Wisconsin 13-4, 4-2.

Coaches: Ed DeChellis is 16-31 in his second season at Penn State and 121-124 overall. Bo Ryan is 81-32 in four seasons at Wisconsin and 464-135 overall.

Series: Wisconsin leads, 12-8.

Last meeting: The Badgers stomped PSU (68-45) in Madison last February.

Last time out: Penn State fell at Ohio State (68-62) Wednesday. Wisconsin dropped a closer-than-it-looked 75-65 decision to No. 1 Illinois in Madison Tuesday.

TV: WPSX (Craig Coshun, Brian Allen).

Radio: Penn State Sports Network (Steve Jones, Dick Jerardi).

Next up: Penn State travels to Indiana Wednesday. Wisconsin plays host to Northwestern the same night.

Probable Starters:

Penn State — G Ben Luber, 6-0 So. (6.2 ppg), G Mike Walker, 6-2 Fr. (6.9 ppg), F Geary Claxton, 6-5 Fr. (12.1 ppg), F Travis Parker, 6-5 Jr. (12.1 ppg), F Aaron Johnson, 6-8 Jr. (13.7 ppg).

Wisconsin — G Sharif Chambliss, 6-1 Sr. (9.2 ppg), G Clayton Hanson, 6-5 Sr. (7.2 ppg), F Andreas Helmigk, 6-9 Sr. (2.9 ppg), F Alando Tucker, 6-5 So. (14.8 ppg), C Mike Wilkinson, 6-8 Sr. (14.2 ppg).

Quick Quiz: Who holds the PSU record for most 3-pointers in a season?

Penn State Notes:

• Penn State has not beaten a ranked opponent since toppling No. 5 North Carolina in the 2001 NCAA tournament. Chambliss was a freshman on that team but did not play in the game. No active member of the Lions was with the team that year.

• Wisconsin plays a patient game, dictating pace and cutting down on opponents’ possessions. That means Penn State must reduce its 16.1 turnovers per game if it hopes to compete.

• Don’t bother looking for football recruits at tonight’s game. The late start conflicts with another part of the weekend-visit schedule.

• Stat watch: Johnson reached double figures in Penn State’s first 17 games of the season but has been held below 10 in the last two. He must score for the Lions to have a chance tonight.

Wisconsin Notes:

• Chambliss, who left Penn State (after three year) following the 2002-03 season, has more points in a Nittany Lion uniform (851) than any current member of DeChellis’ team. In fact, PSU’s leading active career scorers, Johnson (598) and Luber (278), barely have more points together (876) than Chambliss had on his own.

• Despite sustaining a serious knee injury during his NCAA-mandated redshirt, Chambliss is playing well for the Badgers. Unlike his days at Penn State, he serves as a primary ball-handler. He is still a deadly 3-point shooter, but Ryan will quickly pull him if he starts chucking the way he did under former Lion coach Jerry Dunn.

• Chambliss is not on scholarship, per Big Ten rules, after transferring from one league school to another.

• Wisconsin saw its national-best 38-game home winning streak end at the hands of Illinois.

• Stat Watch: The Badgers are 51-1 under Ryan when scoring at least 70 points.

Quiz Answer: No, it’s not Chambliss. Joe Crispin nailed 108 triples in 2000-01. But Chambliss holds the second and third spots on the list, with 99 (2001-02) and 89 (2002-03) respectively.

Unanswered Question: How often must the Nittany Lion blow the dunk off the box before it is removed from the pre-game routine?

FOS Prediction: Penn State 62, Wisconsin 60.

Comment: Cue the alarm and flashing lights, we have an UPSET ALERT. Badgers are a different team away from home (3-3) this year and are stinging from the loss to Illinois.

FOS Prediction Record: 13-6.


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