Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

PSU Basketball

5 Things to Know Before Penn State-Winthrop

Micah Shrewsberry

Year 2 of the Micah Shrewsberry era at Penn State begins Monday night at the Bryce Jordan Center against Winthrop. Here are five things to know. 


Penn State’s celebrated 2022 recruiting class will have plenty of eyes on it this season, and the question of “how good, how soon” will start to be answered Monday. Kebba Nije, a 6-foot-10, 237-pound forward from Centreville, Ohio, leads the way for Penn State’s class. According to 247Sports, Nije is the third-highest-rated signee in Penn State history, behind Tony Carr and Class of 2023 commit Carey Booth. Nije isn’t the only impressive prospect Penn State has. Jameel Brown, Kanye Clary, Evan Mahaffey and Demetrius Lilley are all three stars. 

Shrewsberry has an experienced team, and it’s unclear how much the freshmen will play. But what is clear is that this class is a big reason why many see this as an exciting time for Penn State basketball. 


Penn State’s three transfers, Cam Wynter, Andrew Funk and Mikey Henn, are all expected to play significant roles. Wynter and Funk transferred from Drexel and Bucknell, respectively, and Henn came in from Denver. Funk is one of Penn State’s team captains, along with Myles Dread, Jalen Pickett and Seth Lundy. Wynter projects to be Penn State’s point guard, and the 6-foot-8, 244-pound Henn will give Penn State a much-needed inside presence.


Penn State’s opponent is no slouch. Winthrop went  23-9 last season, 14-2 in the Big South and came one win away from an NCAA Tournament trip, falling to Longwood in the conference championship game. Winthrop lost its top scorer from last year, DJ Burns, who transferred to NC State. But it does return Cory Hightower, who Shrewsberry mentioned as a player to watch. The 6-foot-7, 222-pounder averaged 11.8 points per game last season, and is on the Big South’s first-team all-league preseason squad.


Oftentimes, a coach won’t reveal who he thinks his best player is. Not so with Shrewsberry.

Shrewsberry told college basketball guru Jon Rothstein that Jalen Pickett is Penn State’s best player, and its hard to argue with that statement.

Pickett led Penn State in scoring last season, averaging 13.3 points per game. He’s also experienced, having played at Sienna for three seasons— and making first-team all-conference all three years— before transferring to Penn State.

Pickett gave Penn State a big boost by returning for a fifth-year, and we’ll start to see the dividends of that decision starting Monday night.


Penn State and Winthrop will tip-off Monday at 7 in the Bryce Jordan Center. The game can only be seen on BTN+, where payment is required. Fans can also listen to Steve Jones and Dick Jerardi on these affiliates.

Get NSN in your Inbox

Enter your email address to get notifications of new posts by email.

More from Nittany Sports Now

PSU Basketball

0 Here are five takeaways from Penn State men’s basketball’s 2 OT loss at Clemson on Wednesday night. THE TEAM HAS GUTS Penn State...

PSU Basketball

0 Hunter Tyson scored a career-high 24 points and nine rebounds, and PJ Halls scored 22 points as they lift Clemson to outlast Penn...

PSU Basketball

0 Penn State men’s basketball los to improve to 7-1 Tuesday night against Clemson. Here are five things to know before the game. RETURN...


1 Penn State fans are used to watching 68 teams that they don’t root for play in the NCAA Tournament. In the tournament’s history...

Get Nittany Sports Now in your inbox

Sign-up for email updates and get the whole story first from the Nittany Sports Now team, delivered straight to your inbox.

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.