No. 9 Penn State looks to extend streak vs Illinois

Illinois (16-9, 8-6) vs. No. 9 Penn State (20-5, 10-4)

Bryce Jordan Center, University Park, Pennsylvania; Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: No. 9 Penn State looks for its seventh straight win in the head-to-head series over Illinois. In its last six wins against the Fighting Illini, Penn State has won by an average of 12 points. Illinois’ last win in the series came on Jan. 31, 2015, a 60-58 victory.

SQUAD LEADERS: Lamar Stevens has averaged 17.7 points and 6.8 rebounds to lead the way for the Nittany Lions. Mike Watkins is also a key contributor, producing 10 points, eight rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game. The Fighting Illini have been led by Kofi Cockburn, who is averaging 13.6 points and nine rebounds.LEAPING FOR LAMAR: Stevens has connected on 28.4 percent of the 74 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 5 of 12 over his last three games. He’s also made 73.1 percent of his free throws this season.

SLIPPING AT 72: Illinois is 0-6 when it allows at least 72 points and 16-3 when it holds opponents to less than 72.

PERFECT WHEN: Penn State is a perfect 16-0 when it scores at least 75 points. The Nittany Lions are 4-5 when scoring any fewer than that.

DID YOU KNOW: The Penn State offense has recorded a turnover on only 16.3 percent of its possessions, which is the 27th-best rate in the country. The Illinois defense has forced opposing teams to turn the ball over on just 17.7 percent of all possessions (ranked 278th among Division I teams).


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