The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

April 4, 2013

Rice's abrasive nature apparent early on in career

(Continued)

Coleman declined an interview request by The Associated Press on Wednesday but in a statement called Rice's tenure with the Colonials "successful."

"He is obviously an intense coach, and his passion for the game was mirrored by our student-athletes on the court," Coleman said. "The behavior on the video is quite unfortunate, but it is not indicative of Coach Rice during his tenure at RMU."

The incident did not stop Rice's phone from ringing after the tournament. In fact, Rice was a candidate at Fordham not long after the loss to the Wildcats, and it appeared the New York school was seriously interested in him.

There was a fit, of course, because Rice played point guard at Fordham and he had strong recruiting ties in the New York metropolitan area, as evidenced by Woodall's commitment. Ultimately, though, Fordham went in a different direction and hired Tom Pecora away from Hofstra.

Rice was content at that point to return to the Colonials and push toward another NCAA tournament appearance. But things change quickly in the coaching business, and when Rutgers had to relieve Fred Hill, Jr., from his duties as coach after an incident at a Scarlet Knights baseball game, athletic director Tim Pernetti looked up Rice.

Within days, Rice was hired — just like that. Turned down by an Atlantic 10 school in Fordham, and content to stay at an NEC school in Robert Morris, suddenly he was in the Big East with a dream job.

Too soon? Perhaps. After all, most Big East coaches do not land there immediately after stops in the NEC, but Rutgers looked at Rice and saw the man who could turn the perennially underachieving program around.

Well, it never happened. Though Rice and the Scarlet Knights had brief bouts with prosperity, including a dominating 62-39 win over Pitt and his former boss on Jan. 11, 2012, mediocrity ruled the day in Piscataway, N.J. And there were more lowlights — like a disheartening 56-52 loss to St. Peter's on opening night this season at home — than highlights.

Text Only
Sports
Photos


Poll

Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

Russia-Ukraine
Israel-Palestine
Iraq
None of the above
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee