NCAA BK

Rutgers picks Colonials' Rice as coach

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Jeff Goodman

Jeff Goodman is a senior college basketball writer for FOXSports.com. Check out his Yardbarker blog. MORE>>
 
   
 
Mike Rice is headed to Rutgers.

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The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette first reported that the Robert Morris University coach has agreed to a deal to replace Fred Hill, who agreed to a buyout last month after four seasons at the helm.

The news has been confirmed by FOXSports.com.

The Big East school plans to introduce Rice at a news conference Thursday.

Among those considered for the position were former Philadelphia 76ers coach and Rutgers alum Eddie Jordan, former Boston College coach Al Skinner and former Manhattan, St. John's and New Mexico coach Fran Fraschilla, who is currently working for ESPN.

Rice, 41, has enjoyed success in his three seasons as head coach at Robert Morris, leading the Colonials to consecutive NCAA tournament appearances in addition to an NIT bid while racking up an impressive 73-30 mark.

Robert Morris nearly pulled the upset as a No. 15 seed against second-seeded Villanova in March.

Before arriving at Robert Morris, Rice was an assistant coach at Fordham, where he also played point guard, Marquette, Niagara, Chicago State, Saint Joseph's and Pittsburgh.

He's also well-connected in the area, coaching under Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon and St. Joseph’s Phil Martelli and being involved with the Hoop Group Camps.

Rice will take over a program that hasn’t been to the NCAA tournament since 1991, finished 15-17 overall and 14th in the Big East last season and has lost leading scorer Mike Rosario, who transferred to Florida, and Hamady Ndiaye, who graduated after winning Big East Defensive Player of the Year.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Tagged: Rutgers

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