In his postgame press conference after Penn State dropped its third straight game 79-74 at home to Wisconsin Wednesday night, Penn coach Micah Shrewsberry was asked whether or not he was into the game early on and whether a questionable call that went against Penn State fired up Shrewsberry, and got him back into it.
Shrewsberry said there was nothing off-kilter about the way he approached the Wisconsin game.
“I was pretty into it,” Shrewsberry said. “I don’t know …. I didn’t feel any different than normal. I’m coaching our guys and trying to help us be better, but I don’t think anything to it.”
Penn State turned the ball over 11 times and Wisconsin capitalized by scoring 16 points off its turnovers. Sloppy play on offense can make a big difference, especially against a team that plays close to the margins like Wisconsin.
“I thought we had some careless turnovers,” Shrewsberry said, “that was the biggest thing. Its who they (Wisconsin) are and that’s how they play and in a possession game, which you know what is going to be, 11 is too many. You can’t have that many (turnovers). A lot of them were unforced, and we had a lot of illegal screens that turned out to be turnovers. We had live ball turnovers that we usually don’t have. If they (Penn State) have live ball turnovers Saturday, we’re going to have our doors blown off.”
Shrewsberry also talked about the team’s defensive breakdowns, which Wisconsin also capitalized on.
“I thought tonight we didn’t guard the dribble very well,” Shrewsberry said. “You have to pick your poison against a team like Wisconsin that has two guys that can score in the post. They beat us up in the paint last game, so we doubled a little bit more and we weren’t sharp or crisp in our rotations, so we gave up a couple of early 3s, but also in our rotations. We didn’t guard the dribble, so when they did swing it out, they got to the rim which we have been terrible at. So, we got to be better guarding the drive, breaking down, closing out and keeping out people from the middle of the floor and be better in that area.”
Penn State will have to regain focus quickly to snap its three-game losing streak. It takes on Maryland (16-8, 7-6 Big Ten) in College Park at noon Saturday.