Penn State Takes On No. 13 Michigan Sunday

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Tim Frazier leads the Big Ten with 16 20-point games.


Tim Frazier leads the Big Ten with 16 20-point games.

March 2, 2012

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UNIVERSITY PARK, PA., MARCH 2, 2012 - Penn State will close out the 2011-12 regular season at home Sunday when the Nittany Lions (12-18; 4-13 Big Ten) take on No. 13 Michigan (22-8; 12-5 Big Ten) in a 1:00 p.m. tip in front of national television audience on ESPN.

It will be "Senior Day" at the BJC with the Lions honoring players Cammeron Woodyard (Westminster, Md.) and Billy Oliver (Chatham, N.J.) and senior managers Justin LoSasso, Alex Macht, Jack McNally, Billy Bowe and Adam Horowitz in ceremonies 20 minutes before tip-off.

Fans can receive a free No. 23 Draw String bag upon entrance and it will be "Military Appreciation Day" with fans presenting a valid military entrance receiving free admittance. It will also be a Subway Full Court 4-Pack Game with fans getting four tickets, four drinks and four vouchers for six-inch subs for just $40. Penn State Alumni and Highmark clients can also receive $5 admission when presenting a valid Alumni Association membership card or Highmark Insurance ID card.

Junior guard Tim Frazier (Houston, Texas) enters Sunday's game tied with Talor Battle for Penn State single season assist record with 189. Frazier continues to lead the Big Ten with 6.3 assists per game and is posting 20.1 points per game in Big Ten Conference play, the fourth-best mark nationally among major conference players. Frazier posted his Big Ten leading 16th 20-point outing with a team high 24 points in the Lions' loss at Purdue on Wednesday, the 12th time in 17 Big Ten games he has exceeded his season scoring average of 18.8.

Frazier's production has been extraordinary as his combined field goals and assists account for 58.7 percent of Penn State's baskets on the season, a mark that leads on Division I players. He is on pace to join LIU's Charles Jones (1997-98) as the only two players in the last 15 seasons to average at least 18 points, 6.3 assists, 4.8 rebounds and 2.2 steals per game for a season.

Michigan has won five of its last six games and stands a game out of first place in the Big Ten with a 12-5 conference record. The Wolverines can still tie for their first Big Ten regular season title since the mid 1980's. Freshman Trey Burke leads Michigan posting 15.6 ppg and 4.5 apg in Big Ten play.

Penn State will head to the Big Ten Tournament on Wednesday for a first round contest Thursday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. The Lions won three games in last year's tournament to reach the program's first-ever Big Ten Tournament championship game.


PENN STATE (12-18; 4-13 Big Ten) vs. #13/16 MICHIGAN (22-8; 12-5 Big Ten)

SUNDAY, MARCH 4, 2012 @ 1:00 P.M. (ET)

BRYCE JORDAN CENTER (15,261)

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.


GAME INFO

TELEVISION: ESPN: Jim Barbar & Dan Dakich

RADIO: Penn State Sports Network; Local: 1450 AM; Sirius: CH 113; XM; CH 191

Steve Jones (p-by-p) & Dick Jerardi (analyst)

LIVE STATS & AUDIO:

GAMETRACKER | ALL-ACCESS AUDIO

COACHES:

PENN STATE: Patrick Chambers - 12-18 (1st at PSU); 54-46 (3rd Overall)

MICHIGAN: John Beilein - 89-75 (5th at UM); 640-393 (34th Overall)

RPI: Penn State: #153; Michigan: #13

NEXT UP:

Penn State will play on Thursday in Indianapolis in the Big Ten Tournament. The Lions won three games last year to advance to their first-ever tournament championship game where they fell to No. 1 Ohio State. PSU is 9-14 all-time in the tournament, reaching the semifinals three times. PSU is 5-8 in first round games, winning two of the last three, and has never won when seeded lower than ninth.


THE GAME:

Penn State returns to the Jordan Center Sunday for a "Senior Day" match-up with Michigan. Cammeron Woodyard and Billy Oliver will be honored prior to tip-off. Michigan posted a 71-53 victory in Ann Arbor behind 26 points from Tim Hardaway Jr., in the opening game of the Big Ten season, Dec. 29. Michigan owns a 26-11 series lead and a 10-6 mark in State College. PSU is 3-0 in neutral site games. Michigan has won three-straight in the series, including a 65-62 victory last year in the BJC.

SENIOR DAY:

Penn State will honor graduating senior Cammeron Woodyard and junior Billy Oliver (who is in his fourth season with the program and has elected to end his playing career) prior to Sunday's game. Woodyard, who suffered a season ending injury to his right foot Wednesday in West Lafayette, ends his career having played in 104 games with 21 starts. He had his best season in his senior campaign leading Penn State with 42 threes and averaging 8.7 ppg and 4.1 rpg. He ends his career with 387 career points, 193 rebounds and 69 career threes, having played 24 games or more in each of the last four seasons. He is on track to earn a degree in communication in May. Oliver, who will return in a non-playing capacity to the team next year and complete a degree in finance, played in 58 career games with 20 starts over four injury plagued seasons. He amassed 220 career points, 121 rebounds and 46 threes and had his best campaign this year posting 6.8 ppg and 3.3 rpg with 35 threes in 21 games. Penn State will also honor senior managers Justin LoSasso, Alex Macht, Jack McNally, Billy Bowe and Adam Horowitz.

WOODYARD TO MISS REMAINDER OF SEASON WITH BROKEN FOOT:

CAM WOODYARD fractured the 5th metatarsal in his right foot in shoot-around prior to the game at Purdue (2/29) and will miss the remainder of the season. WOODYARD had 11 double-figure scoring games at home on the year, including a career-high 22 points vs. Minnesota (1/15). He averaged 11.4 ppg and shooting 46% from the field and 45% from three in home games on the year. He was leading the team with 42 threes and shooting 36.8% from the arc on the year, with 29 of those at home and while shooting 45% from three in the BJC. Woodyard is the fourth major contributor to miss significant action this season. All rank in the top seven of scoring and three in the top seven of rebounding. Woodyard, joins Billy Oliver (10 games), Trey Lewis (10 games) and Jon Graham (6 games).Penn State started its 12th different line-up of the season and seventh in Big Ten play at Purdue (2/29). Eight of Penn State's 10 primary contributors on the year are in their first or second season of Division I play.

SCOUTING MICHIGAN:

Michigan (22-8) is tied for second in the Big Ten at 12-5 and has won five of its last six after a convincing 72-61 victory at Illinois on Thursday in a game it led all the way. Tim Hardaway had 25 points and 11 boards in the game while freshman guard Trey Burke had 21. UM has won its last three Big Ten road games and is 4-4 on the road in the conference. Burke is leading the team in Big Ten play with 15.6 ppg while Hardaway is posting 14.2. Michigan ranks second in Big Ten games making 7.8 threes per game and has five players with more than 30 threes on the year, led by Burke's 50.

LAST TIME VS. MICHIGAN:

In the opening game of the Big Ten season on Dec. 29 in Ann Arbor, the Lions shot 33% in the first half and saw Michigan close the half on a 13-5 run to take a 36-22 halftime lead. UM pushed its lead to as many as 22 in the second half, hitting 5-of-10 from three, before claiming a 71-53 victory behind 26 points on 11-of-18 shooting from Tim Hardaway, Jr. Tim Frazier was the only Lion in double-figures with 20 points as Penn State shot 39.6% for the game and saw Michigan shoot 52.4% in the second half and 47.2% for the game, going 8-of-25 from three. Michigan turned 13 Lion turnovers into 16 points.

FRAZIER FIRST TEAM WORTHY:

More reasons Tim Frazier deserves to be in the discussion among Big Ten Player of the Year Candidates and a first-team All-Big Ten selection. • No player in the nation is as integral to their team's offensive production as Tim Frazier whose combined field goals (195) and assists (189) have him involved in 58.7% of Penn State's 654 field goals on the year. Only Providence's Vincent Council (53.5%) and Penn's Zach Rosen (51.4%) have been involved in 50% of their team's field goals nationally. For comparison, two-time first-team All-Big Ten guard Talor Battle was involved in 42.3% for Penn State last year and had a career-high of 45.2% in 2010.

• Frazier has averaged 20.1 ppg in Big Ten play, the fourth-best mark in league play in the nation among major conference players.

• Frazier has averaged 19.5 points in true road games this season, a mark that leads all major conference players and is tied for 15th-best in Division I this season.

• Frazier and LIU's Charles Jones (1997-98) are the only Division I players to average at lleast 18.0 ppg, 6.3 apg, 4.8 rpg and 2.2 spg since the 1996-97 season.

FRAZIER TIES SEASON ASSIST RECORD IN 8 FEWER GAMES:

With six assists at Purdue on Wednesday (his 30th game of the season), Tim Frazier tied Penn State's single season record of 189 set by Talor Battle in 38 games in 2008-09 on a team that shot 44.3%. Frazier's Big Ten leading 6.3 apg is above the PSU record season average of 6.1 set by Freddie Barnes (1992) and Tom Wilkinson (1978) and he has matched the PSU record in eight fewer games despite Penn State shooting 39.4% as a team. Frazier has assisted on 29% of Penn State's baskets on the year. Had the Lions shot a similar percentage as 2008-09, they would have 64 more baskets and Frazier's 29% would equal 220 assists (7.3 apg). Frazier has logged EIGHT games of 9+ assists on the year and had a career-best 11 vs YSU (11/23). Frazier's 173 assists last year rank as the sixth best season mark in PSU history, making him the only Lion with two seasons in the top seven.

LAST TIME OUT:

PURDUE 80, PENN STATE 56, Feb. 29 • West Lafayette, Ind.

Tim Frazier was spectacular in the first half scoring 16 points and helping Penn State to shoot 56% and lead twice before going to the locker room down five, 37-32. But, Purdue exploded in the second half hitting 10 of its first 12 shots and scoring the first 11 points of the half to jump to a 16-point lead and never look back. The Boilers hit at 75% until the final minutes of the half before closing at 65% in the half and 57.4% for the game, including 9-of-22 from three. Robbie Hummel led Purdue with 26 points, eight rebounds and six assists on "Senior Night". Penn State got team-highs of 24 points, six assists, five rebounds and four steals from Frazier, but only Jermaine Marshall (10) joined him in double-figures. Purdue won the rebounding battle 31-17 and out-scored PSU 17-8 at the foul line.

All of Penn State's games can be heard live on the Penn State Sports Network throughout Pennsylvania with Steve Jones and Dick Jerardi calling the action. "The Penn State Basketball Show" featuring Nittany Lion coach Patrick Chambers and Steve Jones airs each Thursday live from Damon's Grill in State College. Fans are encouraged to attend the live broadcast or call in their questions for the coach at 1-800-52LIONS.

Nittany Lion Basketball single-game tickets or group tickets can be purchased by calling 1-800-NITTANY, visiting GoPSUsports.com or through Ticketmaster. Single-game tickets are $18 for the lower bowl and $15 for upper level tickets for adults. Youth tickets (18 and under) are $7 for the lower bowl and $5 for upper level seating, while Penn State student tickets (University Park or branch campus) are $5. Penn State also offers special basketball group ticket rates for groups of 15 fans or more. Nittany Lion group rates are $10 for adults and $5 for youth.

For all the latest information, notes, pictures and related links on Penn State basketball follow Associate Athletic Communications Director Brian Siegrist on Twitter (@PSUSTRETCH) and check GoPSUsports.com. The Nittany Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstatebasketball.

-NITTANY LIONS-

 

 

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