“First and foremost, Peter Kiss is a terrific young man who comes from a wonderful family,” said Rutgers coach Steve Pikiell. “My staff and I are thrilled to add a guy who truly loves the game of basketball and will work tirelessly to make Rutgers basketball better. Peter is a high-level athlete who our fans will enjoy cheering for every time he takes the court. Peter plays with a swagger and a chip on his shoulder and those are the exact qualities we will need from our team as we prepare to climb the ranks of the Big Ten Conference. We are very excited to welcome Peter, as well as his parents, Ida and Peter, to the Scarlet Knight family.”
Kiss averaged 13.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game last season as a true freshman at Quinnipiac under head coach Tom Moore. He played in all 31 contests, starting the final 20, and was selected as conference rookie of the week four times. His biggest performances were against the team’s most high-profile opponents. In his third career game, Kiss shot 8-of-13 to score a game-high 18 points with five rebounds versus eventual national finalist Gonzaga in the AdvoCare Invitational at Disney World. He followed that performance by shooting 7-of-11, including 4-4 from three, to post 19 points against Seton Hall in the Invitational. Kiss scored in double-digits 21 times.
“I’m a player that competes every possession and brings a lot of fire and passion to the court,” said Kiss. “There are many reasons why I chose Rutgers. The main one was to play for Coach Pikiell. His confidence in the direction of the program, and the improvement made over one year, is definitely something I want to be part of. I also really like how close the campus is to New York City, but has an ‘outside of the city’ feel. The alumni base is just huge and I think that will be great for me after basketball.”
A relative newcomer to the game, Kiss grew up on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, playing mostly baseball. He did not begin to play basketball at a competitive level until his sophomore year of high school.
“Peter is a great young man,” said mentor and former New York Gauchos coach Derrik Riullano. “He is very quiet off the court, but on the court, he’s a bulldog. He’s aggressive, always attacking and an in-your-face type of player. He’s exactly where he needs to be at Rutgers. He’s always trying to meet new challenges. There have been times people have doubted his ability at a certain level. He not only gets there, he surpasses it, and moves on to the next.”
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