Rutgers head coach, Mike Rice, will face a three game suspension and a $50,000 fine for inappropriate language and behavior.
This was not a violation of NCAA rules, but instead enforced by the athletic director at Rutgers. He felt the suspension was necessary because Rice had failed to lead his team with the respect that the athletic department expects.
Rice acknowledged his mistakes and offered an apology to the school and his players. He admitted his behavior was uncalled for and is willing to make the necessary changes after his suspension is served.
Associate head coach, David Cox will be the head coach during Rice’s absence.
Rice will miss games against UAB, Howard and Rider. However, he will return in time for Rutgers’ conference opener against Syracuse.
The Scarlet Knights are 7-2 right now and it is unfortunate they will be without their head coach to close out the non-conference season. Hopefully this does not become a distraction for them and they are able to continue the success they’ve had so far.
Rice will come back in time for conference play and there is no question that he will bring positivity and energy returning from his suspension. This will be crucial for Rutgers as they begin the tough Big East conference schedule.
I applaud the athletic director at Rutgers for holding everybody accountable and continuing to create a positive environment throughout the athletic department. This is something that is not done at many high profile schools in order to avoid negative media attention.
Although it may appear as a set back now, Rutgers will rally from the suspension and Rice will make an extra effort to return to his passionate coaching style.