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Dave Rice Accepts Offer as UNLV Men's Basketball Head Coach

TULSA, OK - MARCH 18:  The UNLV Rebels mascot performs during the second round game against the Illinois Fighting Illini in the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at BOK Center on March 18, 2011 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tom Pennington/Getty Images
Michael CampanellaContributor IMay 31, 2016

According to numerous local sources here in Las Vegas—Ryan Green, Las Vegas Review Journal, Las Vegas Sun and CBS Sports—Dave Rice has agreed to be the next head coach of the men's basketball team at UNLV.

The race came down to two names, Rice being one and the other top candidate Reggie Theus. Theus played for the Rebels in the mid-'70s while Rice was a backup player on the 1990 championship team.

Both were excellent choices for the job with plenty of coaching experience themselves, though Rice has yet to hold the official title of head coach. He has spent the last 18 years on college coaching staffs at UNLV and BYU and during Dave Rose's recent illness in Utah, Rice served in the head coaching capacity.

The best question to be asked now: Will he be able to assemble a high quality staff of coaches to take this program to the next level? The likes of Stacey Augmon, Justin Hutson and Larry Johnson all can add great experience, leadership and recruiting ability.

Though Jerry Tarkanian was stronger proponent for Theus, he recently said about Rice, "He's a really sharp guy and a good person."

Quoted by Matt Youmans of the Las Vegas Review Journal:

The potential candidate pool included several high-profile names, including former Rebels great Larry Johnson and coaching legends Larry Brown and Bob Knight.

Rice and Theus were always considered the front-runners, though St. John's assistant Mike Dunlap and former Oregon coach Ernie Kent also made Livengood's list of four finalists.

"Jim has played it real, real close to the vest," Rothermel said. "Everything else being equal, and it is, you should take somebody who has strong UNLV ties.

"I know David very well, and he'll do as good a job as those of us who support him help him do. We have to get resources for him so he can recruit and do the things he needs to do to win."


For more on this you can check out these local Las Vegas Media outlets:

Las Vegas Review Journal

Las Vegas Sun

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