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PSU has played nation’s toughest schedule in two decades

Photo from Penn State Twitter

There are a lot of people out there who don’t follow Penn State basketball closely who are wondering how the Nittany Lions can still be considered an NCAA Tournament contender with a 4-7 record in the Big Ten and 7-8 record overall.

This is how:

The Nittany Lions haven’t just played a tough schedule, they have several wins over highly rated KenPom.com teams, including:

No. 11 Wisconsin

No. 24 Rutgers

No. 36 Virginia Tech

No. 44 Maryland

The Lions also have wins over No. 57 VCU and No. 72 Northwestern. And their Big Ten losses have come against Michigan (No. 3), Illinois (No. 4), Ohio State (No. 8), Wisconsin (No. 11), Purdue (No. 22) and Indiana (No. 25). They also have a non-con loss to Seton Hall (No. 32), a game the Lions led by 8 inside of 2 minutes but lost, which has turned out to be a crucial defeat.

Add all that up, and it’s the biggest reason why Penn State is No. 30 in the KenPom rankings and No. 28 in the NCAA NET rankings.

As of now, Penn State is the first team out in Joe Lunardi’s bracketology on ESPN.

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Written By

Cory Giger is a 15-year veteran of the Penn State beat and a journalist with 28 years of experience. He has won more than 100 state and national journalism awards during his career, plus he's a voter for the Heisman Trophy in football and Wooden Award in basketball.

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