It has already been 4 years since the always smiling Ralph Biggs decided to put an end to his playing career.
In this #ThrowBackThursday we take a look back at the players who have impacted First Division basketball in Belgium. It is safe to say that Ralph Biggs undoubtedly belongs in that category:
The lanky swingman started his professional career in The Netherlands when he signed with Weert after graduating from Towson University (NCAA) in 1998. He immediately put down impressive numbers and at the end of the season was awarded the Dutch League “Most Valuable Player”-award. His performance was also noticed south of the border and the following season Biggs came to Basketbalclub Oostende where he would remain 4 seasons (1999-’03). Long enough to collect 2 Belgian Championship titles (2000-’01 / 2001-’02) and 2 Belgian Cup titles (2000-’01 / 2001-’02), as well as another MVP award (2001-’02).
The following season Biggs moved from the Belgian coast and went to VOO Liège Basket, adding another Belgian Cup title (2003-’04) to his collection and also leading Liège to the Belgian Championship finals where they were eventually defeated by Charleroi (3-2). After that season Biggs then signed with Proximus Spirou Basket Charleroi and would remain there for 3 seasons. Although he continued to put down excellent numbers he was unable to add any more trophies. The by now naturalized American-Belgian then moved to Russia where he spent 2 seasons with Ural Great and 1 with Krasnie Krilya. With Krasnie Krilya he reached the finals of the EuroChallenge in which they lost to Göttingen. In 2010-’11 Biggs started the season at Limoges in the French first division but quickly returned to Belgium when he signed with the Telenet Giants Antwerp where he would remain until the end of the 2012-’13 season. In his 16th season as a pro he then competed for VOO Basket Pepinster where he decided to end his playing career in the summer of 2014.
Throughout his entire career Biggs was known and loved for the pure joy with which he played the game. Always smiling, always ready to mess around with coaches, teammates, opponents and fans alike. As a youngster he dazzled audiences with the way he was able to slither through the defense and finish with an acrobatic lay-up or slam dunk. Later on in his career, when the bones started aching and the explosiveness and elasticity went out the door, he adapted his game and became more of a shooter.
After his retirement Ralph Biggs returned to his hometown Washington, NC and became Head Coach for the Washington High School basketball team. In his first season he was named the 2A Eastern Plains Conference Coach of the Year. Currently he’s the Head Coach for both their Men’s and Women’s Varsity teams.
We at TIB salute you and wish you all the best!