The Rhode Island Rams basketball team has a lot of new faces on their active roster this season, but perhaps none more important than Gilvydas Biruta. As a transfer from Rutgers, Biruta sat out all of last season… much to the chagrin of Rhody fans. The Lithuanian power forward has two years of eligibility remaining, and he’s going to be a huge focal point of the URI offense this season. If he can bring what most fans think he can bring to the team, things are going to get awfully fun very quickly. Here are some more notes on Biruta:
- Averaged 9.7 points and 5.4 rebounds in two seasons with the Scarlet Knights, earning a spot on the 2010-11 Big East All-Rookie Team in the process.
- Has posted three double-doubles in his career, including one against the Providence Friars on February 1, 2012. Gilvydas tallied 13 points and 11 boards in a 78-67 Rutgers loss at The Dunk.
- Dropped a career-best 21 points in 30 minutes against against the #2 ranked Syracuse Orange on February 19, 2012. Also added seven boards in the 74-64 Scarlet Knights’ loss.
- Before Rutgers, Biruta played under Dan Hurley for two seasons at St. Benedict’s Prep. He averaged 15 points and 10 rebounds in his senior year, leading the Gray Bees to a 20-1 season.
Simply put, Gilvydas isn’t exactly your run-of-the-mill transfer. He’s a physical specimen who has already experienced success in a high-level basketball conference. Along with Munford, Biruta figures to be one of the sure-fire starters on this year’s squad. It’s quite possible that we could be seeing a 1-2 offensive punch unlike any that’s been in Kingston for some time.