We're still less than 24 hours into the Pat Chambers era of Penn State basketball after his hiring was announced by the University late Friday afternoon, but reaction is already starting to flow in from a number of sources. Today, we'll use the post to take a spin around the sphere to see what people are saying.
Let's start off with the man himself. David Jones of the Harrisburg Patriot-News talked to Chambers and reports the new coach expects administration will be supportive of his efforts.
"They've been unbelievable," said Chambers of the PSU administration. "In the whole interview process, in the meetings, they've laid out their plan of exactly how they're going to support the program. They've definitely stepped up and I think they want to see a great men's basketball team. They want to be in the top of the Big Ten. And they proved that today with everything that they offered."
Chambers also had interesting words when he spoke to Penn State alum and former Daily Collegian reporter Dana O'Neil, now of ESPN.com.
"I think (the program) is a sleeping giant, in my mind," Chambers said. "They have everything they need. They have more than Villanova had. Everything that they need to be a successful program is there. Ed did a great job and I think there isn't much for me to change. I just hope that maybe I can bring that new energy, that passion to the program."
In her own commentary, O'Neil offers a glowing review of the hire.
Chambers changes the dynamic. He is young, only 40, and finally gives a face to a faceless program.
Before I joined ESPN.com, I worked in Philadelphia and watched Chambers tutor alongside Villanova coach Jay Wright. His passion for basketball and his eagerness was so overwhelming that more than one person asked, "Is this guy for real?" The implication being that Chambers’ personality might be somewhat disingenuous.
It is not. It is who he is.
Devon at Nittany Whiteout really likes the hire.
This is a phenomenal hire for Penn State, and as the news hits the national radar, we’ll be sure to see the big-time analysts saying so. Don’t let me understate this: this hire is the best thing that has ever happened to Penn State basketball. It’s a bigger commit than the Nittany Lions have ever got from a prospect, and, well, there isn’t exactly a huge win we can point to.
With Coach Chambers at the helm, better days are ahead for Penn State basketball.
Ben at Victory Bell Rings, known in these circles as NGameday11, is excited to see what Chambers can do for recruiting.
This Philadelphia connection is possibly the most important asset that Chambers brings to the table. Over the past several years, Penn State’s biggest issue has been their inability to recruit in the Philly area. With Chambers’ connections to the city and experience coaching for Villanova, he has the opportunity to create a recruiting path from Philadelphia to Penn State. If Chambers can establish any sort of pipeline from Philadephia while furthering recruiting areas Penn State has grown in Texas and New England it will go a very long way towards improving the quality of players on the roster. At their core, Penn State’s problem has never really been the X’s and Os rather just having the players to execute at a Big Ten level.
Finally, over at the recently launched Linebacker-U forums, which you should definitely check out if you like the message board format without the crazy, contributor Tim gives one last salute to Ed DeChellis.
When Ed took over eight years ago, the program was an absolute train wreck having come off of back-to-back seven win seasons, a roster full of guys that had no business playing Big Ten basketball, a lifeless and disorganized student section, woefully small and outdated offices for the coaches, no hoops-specific strength/conditioning coach, VHS technology when most other schools were using DVD by that time, amongst other things.
Fast-forward to today: The program is coming off an NCAA tournament appearance, there is talent on the roster to build around (albeit, rather young and inexperienced), a well-organized and vocal student section in the Nittany Nation, a basketball-specific S&C coach, [and] larger and better-looking offices.
Some Nittany Lions are also reacting to the hire, and they sound pretty positive.
Just got off the phone with my new coach. Sounds like a great guy
Shout out to Tim Curley for bringing in Pat Chambers to lead the new exciting era of Penn State Hoops. #We Are.....
Interestingly, waffling prospect Juwan Staten seems intrigued by the hire as well, retweeting a few followers here and there telling him to choose Penn State again now that Chambers is in place. Given Chambers guard friendly tendencies, he might just be back in the mix for the Lions.