Q&A with Sophomore PF Gilvydas Biruta

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Sophomore forward Gilvydas Biruta faces a tough post test against LSU. Facing a team with six players taller than 6-foot-7 on the roster, Biruta discussed his preparations for the SEC opponent and the team's development in the post.

ScarletReport.com: Are you excited to play LSU?

Gilvydas Biruta: Of course I am. I'm excited for every game. I'm ready for the competition in the post. Better competition is more motivation.

SR: How do you think you and Austin Johnson and the younger guys match up against them in the post?

GB: We're working hard. We're learning their plays and how to guard them. We're going to be tough against them and our guards are going to help out with that attacking. It will take the five people on the court to properly defend them.

SR: What have you learned from facing some of the tougher opponents this year like Miami and Richmond?

GB: Playing tough teams is all about the details. You have to play hard, but you also have to play smart. If you focus on the details in your game, you are going to be more successful than if you just go in there unfocused. It's small details like having my hands in the gaps to block passes, being strong in the post, making sure to box out.

SR: Do you see yourself teaching these freshmen the same things you learned last year in their position?

GB: If I see them doing something wrong, I'm ready to direct them. It's tough to be a freshman in college. There is so much to learn and all of these guys are coming from different backgrounds. I'm just trying to teach them what I learned and make them comfortable.

SR: How has Greg Lewis been playing. It sounds like he will be getting more minutes if Malick Kone can't play.

GB: He's improving each game. He's getting more active. He's getting more assertive. He told me yesterday he's not even fully in shape yet, but he's working hard.

SR: How good do you think you can be once he is fully in shape?

GB: It's up to him how good he can be, but I believe that because he is so athletic, he can really help out our team.

SR: How much do you need a younger guy like that or Derrick Randall when Kadeem Jack is out?

GB: They are extremely important because I foul a lot. We need depth and we need extra players for when I get in foul trouble, especially against a team like LSU.

SR: Coach Rice keeps talking about how badly you guys need Dane Miller to be more selfish with the basketball. Do you see it that way?

GB: Definitely. Dane is the guy that can really get our whole team going with his leadership. When he has energy, we all feel it. He is a great scorer when he takes the shots he should take. He makes us all better.

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