football Edit

Believing in the impossible

Tonight marks the tenth and final road game of the season for the Penn State men's basketball team.
Unfortunately for the Nittany Lions, it's against arguably the toughest team in the Big Ten... on Senior Night... in one of the hardest venues in the conference.
That's right, the Nittany Lions are traveling to Madison to face No. 8-ranked Wisconsin at the Kohl Center for a 9 p.m. tip. The Badgers currently sit alone atop the Big Ten standings at 14-2 in conference play and are poised to win their first conference crown since the 2002-03 season.
To top it off, the Badgers have taken seven-straight over the Lions, most recently an 80-55 demolition capped by the season-ending ACL injury to Penn State senior forward, Geary Claxton. On the road, the Lions have lost 10-consecutive games in Madison.
Clearly, this is a team the Lions have struggled against.
Forward Jamelle Cornley, Penn State's leading scorer this season (12.1 ppg), knows it well. Without a win against the Badgers his entire career, he said the Lions are looking to get in and out of Wisconsin... with a win.
"We approach this game as trying to take care of business," he said. "We call it, 'We want to get the W and get out'. That's the way we look at things when we're on the road.
"We want to go in there and take care of business as early as possible and try to take the crowd out of it because the atmosphere is going to be ridiculous there. We want to get some good buckets early and execute our offense and make sure we get good shots early on and take care of the ball. It's going to be very loud and very crazy."
If there's a time for the Lions to be successful on the road - and that's a big IF - this may actually be first time since they traveled to Evanston and Champaign to start the conference schedule, knocking off both the Wildcats and Illini in back-to-back games.
That last road win was on January 6 and at the time, the Lions had improved to 10-4 on the season. Since, they have gone 4-10.
Even so, with back-to-back home wins against Iowa and Michigan, Penn State head coach Ed DeChellis said his team has shown its resiliency and toughness.
"Last week was a huge week for us with (wins over) Iowa and Michigan at home," DeChellis. "We had to have those two games and I think the kids did a great job in practice for those days. We got ourselves back to .500 and won the home games.
"We've won four-in-a-row at home for the first time since 1996. You think about that, four Big Ten games in a row at home since '96. There's some positives and we're going to... head into Wisconsin and Indiana this weekend. It's a big week again for us as we head into the conference tournament. I'm just proud of our kids winning the two games we needed to win this past week."
With the wins, the Lions are now acting like a team with some momentum at their backs. Whether it will amount to a stunning road upset against a team like Wisconsin, well, that remains to be seen.
"The confidence is very high right now," Cornley said. "We've won our last four games at home but we're walking into a good situation to go ahead and close out these next two games against two good teams.
"I think we're capable of winning and I think the team believes that we can win."
The game airs tonight on the Big Ten Network at 9 p.m.