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What to expect from the Nittany Lions

George Mason Basketball: What to expect from the Nittany Lions

Monday, March 16, 2009

What to expect from the Nittany Lions

Penn State probably feels like most bubble teams right now, happy to keep playing but wishing they weren't left out of the big dance. The Nittany Lions had six top 50 wins but their cupcake non-conference schedule is what brought them to the NIT. They have beaten the best in the Big Ten and will be another difficult road challenge for the Patriots. Penn State relies heavily on three players and the three-point shot. Senior guard Stanley Pringle, who made headlines last year for being charged with public masturbation, has been shooting over 46% from behind the arch. Two other starters shoot over 34% from there as well and Mason cannot let them do damage from there as Creighton did. Inside play will be key for the Patriots as the Lions don't have a lot of size or depth inside. They are well disciplined on defense like the Patriots and don't commit fouls or turnovers too often. Both teams are horrible from the free-throw line, so this could be an interesting one if it's close late. Look for Mason to try to go inside early and hopefully Ryan Pearson is at full strength. If they can grind it out inside the low post I think Mason can cause the upset here but if they let Penn State's guard get wide open three-point looks all night it will get ugly real fast. Cam Long didn't have a great game against VCU in the CAA finals, another 4 point game from him and the Patriots won't have a chance. Also, seniors Dre Smith and John Vaughan will be pumped for this and how they start off the game could determine if the Patriots are still in it during the 2nd half.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't like the sound of this at all. Besides the free throw shooting, our other major weakness this season has been our 3 pointer defense. We allow way too many uncontested shots. Too bad we could not get a first round home game.

11:58 AM  
Blogger's good for you. said...

Pringle's past is quite interesting. Or disgusting. Come on, dude...go to your dorm...Ugh.

12:01 PM  
Blogger mooky_l3d said...

Just don't embarass the fans again and lose by 20. Show up and show the Big 10 what Mason is about. Rebounding, tough D, and inside ballin'.

6:27 PM  
Blogger Trent said...

There's no reason to be scared of PSU. Keep in mind, GMU could have beaten a #1 seed in this tournament (Creighton). And possibly, there's just enough separation from the Final Four run for the Nittany Lions to dismiss this team and game. I'm guessing that would be a big mistake. Prediction...a 2nd half dog fight with Mason coming out on top and generating momentum towards NYC with a winnable 2nd round match-up.

9:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its about Winning on The Road!!!

11:25 AM  

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