What it wasn't was a solid shooting display from the field or free throw line, but Chambers got a more than satisfactory day from a backcourt that he knows will be the Nittany Lions' key to success this season.
Tim Frazier scored 25 points and D.J. Newbill added 18 points and 11 rebounds to lead Penn State past Wagner 74-62 on Saturday.
Frazier also pulled down 10 rebounds in a successful return from an Achilles tendon injury that sidelined him for all but four games last season.
Frazier admitted to pregame jitters and it showed with just seven first-half points. But as his scoring pace quickened in the second half with 18, Penn State took control over a Wagner team that was named the preseason favorite in the Northeast Conference.
"I had so many jitters running through my veins," Frazier said. "I had to keep breathing and breathing and breathing, and I've waited so long to step back on the court with these guys. It was just an amazing moment.
"I'll never forget this day."
Frazier said Newbill helped calm him down. Chambers did as well.
"It was just him and I before we ran out and it was a nice moment together," Chambers said about Frazier's comeback. "He's worked so hard to get to this point and you can understand he was jacked up in the first 20 minutes, but he settled things down in the second, which was good."
Brandon Taylor scored nine points and Ross Travis added eight for Penn State, which won its 10th straight season-opening home game.
Wagner trimmed a 12-point halftime deficit to 33-30 when Penn State missed its first eight field-goal attempts of the second half.
The Nittany Lions responded with a 21-10 run capped by Frazier's 3-pointer to lead 54-41 with 8:21 to go.
The Lions didn't allow Wagner to within nine points after that. "We made a bunch of mental mistakes the first half," Frazier said. "They drew up some plays we hadn't seen before.
"But basketball is a game of runs. We came back and made our run and tried to sustain it the rest of the game."
Kenneth Ortiz had 20 points and Latif Rivers had 12 for the Seahawks.
"We knew it was going to be a tough game," Chambers said. "That's a great team; you'll see them in the NCAAs. We thought it was going to be like a Big Ten game and that's how we played it."
Both teams shot poorly from the field—Wagner at 29.9 percent and Penn State at 35.8. But Penn State converted 6 of 16 3-pointers as opposed to just 2 of 23 for Wagner.
"I think it was some first-game jitters for our guys but I figured eventually the ball would start to fall, we just had to continue to defend," said Wagner coach Bashir Mason who, at 29, is the country's youngest Division I head coach.
"I never felt we were really out of it because we were doing such a good job defensively.
"We have five or six guards who shoot the ball well, but tonight they just weren't falling."
Penn State took 43 free throws but made only 30 as Frazier was 12-for-17 and Newbill 6-for-9.
"I wanted to get Tim and D.J. to the line and take advantage of their speed and that's the plays we were calling to get to the foul line.
"It's not like I don't want an inside game, I do; it will help us take pressure off the guards," Chambers said. "But those last five minutes felt like two hours."
Frazier expressed frustration over missing five three throws but was pleased that Penn State was able to take 43 foul shots.
Mario Moody's 11 rebounds enabled Wagner to outrebound Penn State 44-43, but the Seahawks missed a number of layups and other shots from the paint in their 20-for-67 shooting performance.
Nine players scored for Penn State as Miami, Ohio, transfer Allen Roberts chipped in with seven rebounds and four points and forward Ross Travis added eight points.
Ortiz, the Northeast Conference's defensive player of the year the past two seasons, scored 13 second-half points and Rivers had 10, but they were the Seahawks' only consistent scorers.