Jalen Pickett drops 41 in Penn State's victory over Illinois
Jalen Pickett is one of the top players in the B1G and perhaps the best guard in the conference. The Nittany Lions star carried Penn State on his back Tuesday night, dropping a season-high 41 points in a 93-81 win over the Illini. Pickett dropped 46 points on Quinnipiac his freshman season when he played for Siena.
And that’s huge for Penn State. The win snaps a 4-game losing streak that dated back to January. It improves Penn State’s overall record to 15-11 and 6-9 in the conference.
Pickett did several things with his 40-bomb against the Illini. It’s the most points scored by a Nittany Lion since 1961 and put him over 2,000 career points. His final line was 41 points and 8 assists on 15-20 from the field and 5-9 from range.
It was Jalen Pickett’s night. pic.twitter.com/KKobLHVMLl
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 15, 2023
To say Penn State is removed from the bubble is putting it lightly, but the Nittany Lions may have one more run at a tournament bid in them. They have a fairly tame upcoming schedule they can build on, travelling to Minnesota and Ohio State before hosting their toughest remaining opponent: Rutgers. Battles against Northwestern and Maryland will end their regular season slate.
There’s not much room for error, but if Pickett can play like that every night there’s every chance to make one last run.