« One Child Killed, Others Injured in Boston Marathon Explosions | Main | Former Colo. Student-Athlete Wins $3.1M From Riddell in Lawsuit »

Fired Rutgers Basketball Coach Still Coaching 12-Year-Old Girls

Mike Rice, who was fired from Rutgers University earlier this month after a video leaked of him cursing and throwing basketballs at his players, still hasn't left the basketball-coaching business entirely.

Brian Geltzeiler, founder of the website hoopscritic.com, broke the news over the weekend that even after being fired from Rutgers, Rice is still coaching an Amateur Athletic Union team of 12-year-old girls.

Former Temple University player Mike Vreeswyk added fuel to the fire on Sunday in response to Geltzeiler's series of tweets.

Deadspin caught wind of Geltzeiler's tweets and published a story to that effect, asking, "Is it possible these girls and their parents have no idea what's been going on in their own backyard?"

As it turns out, Rice's daughter is one of the 12-year-old girls on the team, according to SNYRutgers.com. He's been coaching the New Jersey Shoreshots for the past three seasons, ever since being hired as the head basketball coach at Rutgers back in 2010.

A number of parents whose daughters play for the Shoreshots have taken to Rice's defense since the story broke over the weekend.

Jerry Carino, the college basketball writer for the Gannet New Jersey newspapers, tweeted the following only hours after the Deadspin story went up:

One of the team's parents also told SNYRutgers.com that "The Deadspin report is a gross misrepresentation of the facts," saying that "the team's parents are fully behind Coach Rice and his instruction of their daughters."

On Monday, CBSsports.com refuted the report that Rice crossed a line over the weekend after speaking to three parents who have daughters on Rice's AAU team.

"I was there all weekend, and nothing happened," one of the parents told CBSsports.com. "There were no expletives, there was nothing over the line. There was nothing egregious, nothing demeaning, and nothing that jeopardizes the safety of the children."

As noted by Rob Dauster of NBCsports.com, "at that age, parents still attend practices," which drastically reduces the chances that he's throwing basketballs at their daughters' heads.

Gary Parrish of CBSsports.com summarized the situation well in a column published today.

"If the parents of the players are OK with Rice coaching—and they must be or else he wouldn't be coaching, right?—why should I or anybody else unrelated to the situation care one way or another?"

Based on the reports from those who spoke directly to parents of players on the AAU team, the Rutgers version of Rice is nowhere to be seen.

Want all the latest K-12 sports news? Follow @SchooledinSport on Twitter.

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.


Most Viewed on Education Week



Recent Comments