Penn State Athletics announced on Friday night that head basketball coach Pat Chambers will be suspended one game for his inappropriate actions from Thursday night’s loss at Michigan.
During the game, ESPN cameras caught Chambers getting aggravated and shoving freshman guard Myles Dread during a timeout. Afterwards, the coach apologized for his actions, saying he was just trying to challenge his young player and that he would handle himself differently next time. That didn’t stop the incident from becoming a national story on Friday afternoon.
Here’s what athletic director Sandy Barbour had to say.
“Coach Chambers and I have spoken about what occurred during the Michigan game and he is very remorseful. His actions were unacceptable, which he recognized, and he apologized to Myles Dread last night and his family today. His actions do not reflect the values of Penn State and the expectations we set for our programs and must not occur again. Pat and I agree his actions were unacceptable and he will be suspended for Sunday night’s game vs. Wisconsin.”
And from Chambers himself.
“I apologized to Myles after the game and I have spoken with his family. My actions were inappropriate; that’s not what Penn State stands for or what I stand for. I told Myles I was sorry that it happened. Sandy and I have spoken and agreed there are some things I need to address. I’ve assured her this won’t happen again and understand my actions last night come with consequences.”
It’s already been a frustrating season for the Nittany Lions and their fans. The team consistently gives itself a chance to win by playing solid defense only to fail spectacularly on offense time after time. Thursday night’s game in Ann Arbor was just another example. Mike Watkins finally broke out of his shell with 19 points off the bench, but the rest of the Lions couldn’t shoot a lick, finishing 1-for-14 from beyond the arc. Several of those shots didn’t hit the rim, with the one make coming on a banked-in prayer by Dread.
Suspending the head coach for a crucial home game against Wisconsin because the program got a tiny bit of negative media attention isn’t going to help matters. Taking Chambers’s place on Sunday against the Badgers could be Keith Urgo, who is listed as the associate head coach. It could also be Jim Ferry, another top assistant who has extensive head coaching experience from his Duquesne tenure.