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Penn State Basketball: Pat Chambers Picks Up Pieces After Recent Departures

by on March 19, 2012 4:25 PM

Following the recent departure of guards Trey Lewis and Matt Glover, who both plan to transfer, Penn State head men's basketball coach Pat Chambers spoke to the media Monday about his team moving forward.

"It's never easy when players leave," Chambers said in a season-ending news conference in the Bryce Jordan Center. "But sometimes it's for the best and it's for the right reasons and you want to support them.

"I transferred, and it was the greatest decision of my life. Sometimes a fresh start can be a good thing."

Lewis' transfer announcement last week made him the third Penn State player this season to make the decision to finish their collegiate careers elsewhere. Glover's announcement came the day prior to Lewis' defection, but freshman center Peter Alexis decided to depart two months ago.

"Peter will be playing at (Philadelphia University) next year," said Chambers, a graduate of that same university who helped connect Alexis to the school. "He's very excited, and he's going to be working with a great coach.".

The most immediate issue for Chambers and his coaching staff will be filling the void in the roster that has suddenly shrunk to only nine players. While there is an urgency to fill those vacancies for 2012-13, Chambers has stressed the importance of making the right decision.

"Putting some thought in to this the last few days, the worst thing I could do is rush just to fill the scholarship. I'm not going to do that," Chambers said. "We're going to be patient, this is a process, and I want to get to know who these scholarships are going to be given to.

"I want to get to know them on a level other than basketball, because I think you need to know that this is a two-way street and we're on the same page.

“We are going to take our time and get the right guys for Penn State, for me, and for this program. If we can find guys this year, great. If not, we have a pretty good team coming back, so I am not worried about it.”

Even though the transfers were unexpected, Chambers feels that he's prepared his staff to handle filling the holes left behind.

"As a staff, we always believe that you don't know what could happen," Chambers said. "You always have to plan for things, so we definitely had our eye out there. There are a lot of coaching changes and players will de-commit, and we're not allowed to contact anybody but our eye is out there. You just have to be patient."

As far as any coaching changes on his staff, Chambers said he doesn't expect any following a 12-20 season. 

"I love my staff and I hope they like me." he said, laughing.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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