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Preview and Open Thread: Penn State Hosts Lock Haven For An Exhibition Game

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After a super-secret scrimmage with Seton Hall the Lions have one more tune-up before the first game of the season.

Big Ten Basketball Tournament - Second Round
Will the basketball Gods be kind to coach Chambers this season?
Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images
Who: Lock Haven Bald Eagles
When: Friday 6 p.m.
Where: Bryce Jordan Center, University Park, Pa.
Stream: BTN2GO.com Plus ($)
Live Stats: CBSports.com

Penn State opens the non-conference schedule a week from today when it plays Albany in the first game of the Hall Of Fame Tip-off tournament in University Park. Tonight is the final chance for the team to get ready for what is sure to be an exciting season.

The Lions will host Lock Haven, a division two basketball team, at the Bryce Jordan Center at 6 p.m. It will be a good chance for Pat Chambers to get some of the players further down on the bench an opportunity to play. Chambers mentioned in his preseason press conference that he plans to use ten players in each game with regularity. Outside of a lopsided finish, the last few players on the bench may not see the court very often after tonight’s match-up.

It will be the first time that we will get an official look at the team together on the floor. Last week the team played a scrimmage with Seton Hall, and there hasn’t been much information released from the event other than a partial box score that was tweeted after the game.

Penn State basketball junkies are foaming at the mouth for anything they can get their shaky, hoops-withdrawal hands on. From the box score, which again was a scrimmage, you can see that five players that were listed on Penn State’s side got more than 20 minutes of playing time. Those five were Terrence Samuel, Julian Moore, Shep Garner, Lamar Stevens, and Tony Carr.

Chambers announced the starting lineup for tonight’s exhibition game earlier this week. Noting that Payton Banks is recovering from an injury, insinuating the possibility that he would start were he healthy, Chambers named Tony Carr, Shep Garner, Josh Reaves, Lamar Stevens, and Julian Moore as his starting five.

As was noted in the preseason press conference, the team is not focused as much on the starting five as it is the first ten players, who will all get significant minutes for the team this year. Tonight we should get an idea of the pairings that will be used at the start of the season.

One question is the low-post. With only two true low-post players, Julian Moore and Mike Watkins, it would be news if both were to play at the same time. Moore has had very little issue with foul trouble, even factoring fouls per minute, in his first two seasons with the Lions. It will be interesting to see whether Watkins will be able to defend the low-post without receiving too many whistles. While Lock Haven is far from the level of competition that Penn State will face as the year wears on, it will be a risk-free look at the team a week before the games begin to mean something.

We’ll be following along in the comment section. This is an exhibition open-thread, so don’t be afraid to make mistakes on the fly. It’s the time to work out the bugs in the gifs and pictures that will be posted. New terminologies can be tested, to see if they will catch on for open-threads that will count against our permanent record.

Let’s do this. Shootyhoops Nation unite!