Senior Day for Nittany Lions

Penn State faces Iowa at the Jordan Center Saturday. It is the next to last home game of the season for the Lions, and seniors Kevin Fellows, Jason McDougald and Jamaal Tate will be honored. We caught up with Fellows and McDougald at a press conference Friday, and posted the audio of the interview below.

Fellows and McDougald Q&A. (WMV)

Penn State vs. Iowa

Bryce Jordan Center

Game Time: 12:15 p.m., Saturday.

Records: Penn State 7-19, 1-12; Iowa 16-12, 4-9.

Coaches: Ed DeChellis is 16-38 in his second season at Penn State and 121-130 overall. Steve Alford is 105-81 in six seasons at Iowa and 261-158 overall.

Series: Iowa leads 15-8 and has won three straight.

Last meeting: The Hawkeyes clubbed the Lions 77-58 in Iowa City Jan. 31, 2004.

Last time out: Penn State fell at Michigan Wednesday (63-48). Iowa tumbled at Minnesota (65-57) the same night.

TV: ESPN-Plus via WTAJ locally (Dick Bremer, Mike Kelly).

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

Next up: The Lions play host to Minnesota Wednesday. The Hawkeyes entertain Ohio State the same evening.

Probable Starters:

Penn State — G Ben Luber, 6-0 So. (5.7 ppg), G Danny Morrissey, 6-2 Fr. (7.2 ppg), F Geary Claxton, 6-5 Fr. (12.5 ppg), F Jason McDougald, 6-9 Sr. (1.0 ppg), F Kevin Fellows, 6-10 Sr. (0.6 ppg).

Iowa — G Mike Henderson, 6-2 So. (3.9 ppg), G Jeff Horner, 6-3 Jr. (13.4 ppg), G Adam Haluska, 6-5 So. (13.8 ppg), F Greg Brunner 6-7 Jr. (14.6 ppg), C Erek Hansen, 6-11 Jr. (5.4 ppg).

Quick Quiz: When did Iowa and Penn State first clash on the hardwood?

Penn State Notes:

• This will be Senior Day for the Lions. It is a nice touch by Penn State, moving the event from the typical last-home-game-of-the-season date. Fellows is from Idaho, and this will allow his parents to make it in for the game. Besides, the crowd figures to be much bigger for a weekend tilt than a Wednesday night affair.

• Fellows, McDougald and Jamaal Tate will be honored before the game. Tate, a fifth-year senior, is serving as a student assistant coach after ending his playing career earlier this season.

Read more about Tate here.

• Fellows will get the start despite undergoing laser surgery on his left eye Monday. He was poked in the eye the previous Friday, and after experiencing blurred vision that weekend, went to Hershey for what he called a “minor” procedure.

• Fellows is shooting 67 percent from the floor in Big Ten play, by far the best number on the team. McDougald’s 12 blocks are the second best total on the squad, even though he’s logged only 119 minutes on the season.

• Players who were not at Penn State last season have led the Lions in scoring in 12 of the team’s 13 Big Ten games this year.

• The Lions have lost eight straight.

• Stat watch: Penn State posted a total of 87 points in its last two games.

Iowa Notes:

• The Hawkeyes have lost three straight and five of their last six, effectively eliminating themselves from NCAA tournament contention. Iowa was 12-1 to start this season, with wins over Louisville and Texas, and was ranked as high as No. 14 by the Associated Press (Jan. 3).

• Talented guard Pierre Pierce was dismissed from the Hawkeye program Feb. 2 for disciplinary reasons. He had been the team’s leading scorer at 17.8 ppg. The current 1-5 slide began when Pierce was booted from the team.

• Iowa has not gotten more than nine points from its bench in a game during the 1-5 streak.

• Horner needs 20 points to reach 1,000 for his career.

• Stat Watch: Seven of Iowa’s nine league losses have been by 10 points or less.

Quiz Answer: The Hawkeyes beat the Nittany Lions 82-53 in the East Regional Semifinal of the NCAA tournament in 1955. The game was played at Northwestern. Bob Hoffman, also starting quarterback on the PSU football team, led PSU with 14 points in the game.

FOS Prediction: Iowa 63, Penn State 55.

Comment: The Lions just haven’t shown the kind of confidence needed to pull off a Big Ten win.

FOS Prediction Record: 19-7.

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