Mike Rice Rumors
Radio play-by-play announcer Brian Wheeler has negotiated a two-year contract extension with the Blazers, meaning the club’s entire broadcast crew will be back for at least another season. Television play-by-play voice Mike Barrett and analysts Mike Rice (TV) and Antonio Harvey (radio) are contracted through 2015-16, with a club option for the following season.
Mike Rice is taking the first step toward rehabilitation by spending a month with basketball wellness guru John Lucas in Houston. Lucas told ESPN.com Monday that the former Rutgers coach is receiving anger management counseling and working with former college players who are going through Lucas’ pre-NBA draft camp. “He’s doing great,” Lucas told ESPN.com. “His attitude has been phenomenal and our kids live his intensity and his passion for the game. He’s happy to be having this chance to give back a little bit.”
Put your hands on Kobe Bryant … he’s gonna put a beatdown on you — even if you’re his coach. During an interview with Jim Rome … Kobe reacted to the infamous video of now-fired Rutgers coach Mike Rice getting physical with his players, saying if he was on that team … “I woulda smacked the hell out of him. No question about it.”
The FBI has launched an investigation into possible extortion surrounding the Rutgers basketball video scandal that has cost head coach Mike Rice and athletic director Tim Pernetti their jobs. At the centre of the FBI investigation is the former director of player development under Rice, Eric Murdock. It was Murdock who provided the video showing Rice kicking and shoving players, throwing basketballs at players and taunting them with homophobic language. According to the New York Times, Murdock approached the university in December asking for $950,000. The university declined to pay Murdock who subsequently released the video, setting off a firestorm at Rutgers.
On Dec. 27, Barry A. Kozyra, Murdock’s attorney, sent a two-page letter, obtained by ESPN, to John K. Bennett, who is representing Rutgers University, seeking $950,000. Murdock’s annual salary at Rutgers was $70,000. The letter was dated two weeks after Rutgers men’s basketball coach Mike Rice was suspended three games without pay and fined $50,000 for a violation of athletic department policy, which Rutgers announced on Dec. 13.
An attorney for Eric Murdock, Rutgers’ former director of player development for men’s basketball, sought $950,000 from the university as settlement for Murdock’s wrongful termination claims, ESPN has learned.
Is the the physical stuff that crossed the line? “Verbal can cross the line and physical can cross the line. Both of them can cross the line because sometime verbal is sometimes as worse as physical. So it’s just all depends on what you say verbally. If you get to saying some of the stuff he was saying, I’m kinda used to that on the streets. If your homeboy on the streets is saying that, it’s cool. But if it’s somebody that’s not your homeboy, it’s a good chance something can go down. So from a coaching standpoint, if you didn’t recruit me like that, and I go to arena and you start coaching me like that, I’m going to have to take it somewhere else. You expect to go into a good environment and learn from a guy for four years, five years, however long you’re there. And some players want to be coaches, and that’s nothing you want to learn from.”
Ray Allen not only watched it prior to entering the Heat’s locker room Tuesday night, but he called over Heat teammates — such as Norris Cole, Udonis Haslem and Dwyane Wade — to watch. “I mean, it was just despicable,” Allen said. “Not only as a parent, but I think about where I went, the places I’ve gone in my career, my parents kind of lent me to all these other people. I’ve been raised not only by Mom and Dad, but by several coaches, AAU coaches, high school coaches and then my college coach, and all of them had a hand in getting me to who I am today. And not to mention the teachers that I grew up under, learning, so we trust in the people we lend our kids off to, to help them grow. And I only hope when I let my kids go, there’s somebody watching them and growing and making sure they do that.”