WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. — Monmouth will introduce King Rice as its new men’s basketball head coach.
A native of Binghamton, N.Y. and a 1992 graduate of North Carolina, Rice has 13 seasons of experience in the collegiate coaching ranks, 10 of which came with current Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings. For the past five seasons, Rice has been an assistant coach at Vanderbilt, where the Commodores made the NCAA tournament four of those years out of the Southeastern Conference.
Rice, 42, served as an assistant to Stallings for five seasons at Illinois State from 1994-98, helping the Redbirds advance to postseason play four times, including two appearances in the NCAA Tournament. Rice helped spearhead recruiting efforts and was noted for his solid relationships with players.
Prior to his stint in Normal, Ill., Rice began his coaching career as an assistant on Jerry Green’s Oregon staff during the 1993 campaign. Following his five seasons with Stallings at Illinois State, Rice was an assistant for two years (1999-2000) at Providence under Tim Welsh.
As a point guard at North Carolina from 1988-91, Rice played for legendary coach Dean Smith, helping the Tar Heels to a 29-6 overall mark and appearance at the 1991 NCAA Final Four. He finished his career ranked third on the Tar Heels’ all-time assist list with 629, and that mark ranks 11th all-time in Atlantic Coast Conference annals. Rice, who was a team captain in 1990-91 alongside Pete Chilcut and Rick Fox, earned UNC’s Carmichael-Cobb Award (team’s outstanding defensive player) as a junior, and as a senior was tabbed the Foy Roberson Award recipient as the team’s Most Inspirational Player.
Rice, who played in 140 career games for the Tar Heels and once had 13 assists in a single-game versus Kentucky, earned his bachelor’s degree in communications from North Carolina in 1992.
Rice also served as head coach of the Bahamian National team for three seasons from 2001-2004.
A 1987 McDonald’s High School All-American, Rice is married to Summer and the couple has a son, Alexander.