UNLV Basketball Finds Coach In Dave Rice, Former Jerry Tarkanian Player

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Dave Rice Officially Announced As UNLV Basketball Coach

When you think of the 1990-1991 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels, you think of Larry Johnson, Stacey Augmon, Greg Anthony. You might even think of Anderson Hunt and George Ackles if you really remember then.

Do you remember Dave Rice? Out of all of the players on that team, Rice is the one who’s had the most impact on the program since. He’ll have an even greater impact moving forward now that he’s been officially offered the head coach position at UNLV.

Pending the approval by Nevada’s Board of Regents, UNLV Athletics Director Jim Livengood has offered the UNLV men’s basketball head coaching position to Dave Rice and he has accepted the offer.

Rice was an assistant at UNLV for 11 seasons after having played for the 1990 National Championship team before getting the boot when Lon Kruger arrived in Las Vegas. Rice eventually moved on to Utah State in 2004-05, then joined BYU in 2005. He spent the last six years with the Cougars, moving up to associate head coach in 2008.

For more on the UNLV and the coaching search, check out Mountain West Connection and SB Nation's UNLV basketball hub.

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Dave Rice Hired As UNLV Basketball Coach After Larry Brown Overture

After a bizarre head coaching search that included a public reveal of final candidates, a campaign for the job by Larry Brown, and everything short of a Cirque Du Soleil production, the UNLV Runnin' Rebels basketball program has a coach: Dave Rice.

The BYU Cougars assistant either really loves the Mountain West Conference, or he's looking to lead the program at which he played his college ball back to the Jerry Tarkanian standard. Probably the latter, as Rice played for the legendary UNLV coach in the early 1990s.

Tarkanian told ESPN that he himself thought Reggie Theus, another former player, would get the job:

I thought for sure they would hire Reggie. Dave is a great person. He's a very intelligent guy, a great person. But I think most of the town thought it was going to be Reggie.    

For more on the UNLV and the coaching search, check out Mountain West Connection and SB Nation's UNLV basketball hub.

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Larry Brown Throws His Name Into UNLV Basketball Coaching Search

Larry Brown has been connected to every coaching job, at nearly every level, since being fired by the Charlotte Bobcats in October. The next logical progression is for Brown to toss his name into the search for the next head basketball coach at UNLV, which he did on Saturday. Brown let it be known he's been in contact with the UNLV athletic director Jim Livengood about the vacant job on the same day Livengood announced interviews had been completed on Friday.

But don't count Brown as a shoe-in for the job as his chances are slim and he's more of an afterthought than a serious candidate, according to Sports Illustrated.

Two sources close to Brown said he has been in contact with Runnin' Rebels athletic director Jim Livengood as recently as Wednesday about the position and is expecting to hear back soon, although his chances appear slim unless the process continues to stall. When reached by phone, Brown confirmed the contact with UNLV but declined to comment further.

The process appears to have been simple. Livengood had his list of candidates and is working his way through the process, but Brown attempted to jump into the conversation right at the very end of the interviews. It's not the first time, nor will it be the last, Brown lobbies for a job, but this one seems unlikely.

In serious candidate news, Dave Rice, Reggie Theus Mike Dunlap and Ernie Kent have all reportedly interviewed for the job and one of the four will likely get the job when Livengood makes a decision.

For more on the UNLV and the coaching search, check out Mountain West Connection and SB Nation's UNLV basketball hub.

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Reggie Theus Contacted About Replacing Lon Kruger As UNLV Basketball Coach

The UNLV Runnin' Rebels are in the process of finding Lon Kruger's replacement, with the biggest name reported in their basketball coach search being Minnesota Timberwolves assistant Reggie Theus. The former Sacramento Kings and New Mexico State coach and NBA journeyman calls UNLV his "dream job." He played for Jerry Tarkanian from 1975 to 1978 and has since seen his jersey number retired.

Kruger left the program on April 1 to take the head job at Oklahoma, doubling his dollars in the process by signing a $2.2 million-per-year contract.

Theus to CSN California:

I have been contacted by the university and I think the process is moving along. I think (UNLV Athletic Director) Jim Livengood wants the process to go pretty quickly. I had no Plan B when I started to coach. Coaching the Runnin' Rebels is the only job I ever wanted.

Before taking the Kings job, Theus led the Aggies to a 25-9 record and NCAA Tournament bid in 2007.

For more UNLV sports, visit Mountain West Connection and SB Nation's UNLV basketball hub.

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