This will be the 38th all-time meeting between Indiana and Penn State. The Hoosiers hold a 28-9 advantage in the rivalry, but the Nittany Lions have won six of the last seven encounters including a sweep of last year's home and home series.
Despite being one of the most storied program's in college basketball, Indiana had a few down years in recent history. Head coach Tom Crean appears to have restored Indiana to its great tradition as his team is off to a 14-1 start and continues to climb in the national rankings. The Hoosiers have played three- straight ranked opponents since entering Big Ten play as they began their conference season a loss to Michigan State before beating Ohio State and Michigan. Indiana had a successful offensive night against 13th ranked Michigan on Wednesday as it made 55.1 percent of its field goals and 7-of-11 from three-point range. That type of play given the Hoosiers the ninth best scoring offense in the nation at 82.0 ppg.
Indiana's lineup features Christian Watford, Cody Zeller, and Jordan Hulls. Watford is the leading scorer in Big Ten play so far with 20.3 ppg after a 25- point, seven-rebound performance against Michigan. Zeller has been one of the top freshman in the nation with four Big Ten Freshman of the Week trophies already collected. Zeller is fifth in the nation in field goal percentage (65.5). Hulls is a big-time perimeter shooter as he is ranked fourth nationally with a 55.3 three point percentage.
Penn State enters today with a 9-7 overall record after a 20-point win over Purdue in its best performance of the season. Head coach Patrick Chambers has gone 0-2 against ranked opponents in his first year with the team. Opposite of their opponent, the Nittany Lions rely on their performance on the defensive side of the floor more often than not. Penn State handled Purdue on Thursday by stifling the Boilermakers' attack and holding them to 31.9 percent shooting from the field and a season-low 45 points. The Nittany Lions will need to improve on their second to last in the Big Ten average of 62.9 ppg to upset the Hoosiers.
Tim Frazier and Billy Oliver will be the keys to victory for Penn State. Frazier is third in the conference in scoring with 17.6 ppg and had his league leading sixth 20-plus point game of the year recently. Oliver had a career- best 21 points and seven makes from three in the team's win over Purdue. Jermaine Marshall could also be a big factor as he has notched a double-digit scoring performance in eight of his last nine games.