In day filled with transfer news, two Big East schools were hit hard by transfer announcements. Rutgers forward Gilvydas Biruta and Connecticut forward Alex Oriakhi will both seek transfers to other schools it was learned today.
Biruta was a young contributor to a Rutgers team hoping to build a bit of momentum for the future, after it failed to reach the NCAA Tournament for the 21st consecutive season. Transfers of young, talented players has become the norm under Mike Rice and has plagued the program with highly rated players like Mike Rosario leaving the program in 2010. Biruta averaged 9.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per game last season.
Oriakhi is a slightly different story. Next season will be his last year of eligibility. With Connecticut likely to be barred from the NCAA Tournament due to its APR, Oriakhi is free to transfer to another school and not be forced to sit out an additional season of competition. Big East rules preclude him from transferring to another Big East team, but there will certainly be suitors for the player that was likely the main reason the Huskies were able to hang on and beat Butler for a national championship last season.
Oriakhi's absence, along with the expected early departure for the NBA Draft of Jeremy Lamb and Andre Drummond could leave Connecticut with the shell of an already underachieving team. Combine the player losses with the