Sioux Falls Skyforce Basketball: Rutgers Coach Rice's actions 'U - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Sioux Falls Skyforce Basketball: Rutgers Coach Rice's actions 'Unacceptable'

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It's the video everyone is talking about—ESPN released the practice video where Rutgers University's head men's basketball coach Mike Rice is chucking balls at player's heads, yanking and throwing them around the court and shouting verbal insults. 

Coach Rice was fired early Wednesday morning in response to the video. 

Skyforce player Demetris Nichols spent his college career at Syracuse University under legendary head coach Jim Boeheim who has one of the best winning records in college basketball. 

But even after years in that demanding program, Nichols says the Rutgers incident is far from usual coaching behavior. 

"The first clip he grabbed his player by the shirt then pushed him away, that's unacceptable," said Nichols. 

After years of spending day after day at practice just like the one in the Rutgers video, Nichols says coach rice's behavior is appalling. 

"That's not coaching, that's just being abusive and it is just sad that in this day and age, that stuff is going on," said Nichols. 

"You can't kick players, throw balls at players, you can't do that to human beings. When I see something like that, it really makes you think, this person should be fired and there's something not right about this person," said Skyforce Head Coach Joel Abelson. 

At Skyforce Basketball, both the players and coach agree that coaches should demand a lot from their players, even be what many call a tough coach. 

"I appreciate you know guys, coaches like first coach was a tough guy, he demanded a lot, he saw the potential that I didn't see in myself and great coaches bring that out of you," said Nichols.

"I see my role as trying to push guys to be as good as they can be," said Abelson. 

But the Rutgers video shows there's a big difference between pushing a player and crossing the line. 

"Whenever there's any kind of bullying, that's an immediate way across the line and that's what I think throwing a ball is," said Abelson. 

"There's a right way to push somebody when you let them know how good they can be, you know and the expect more from them, that's the right way, but the wrong way is an example of the couch from Rutgers, that's the wrong way to push a guy, that's just abuse," said Nichols. 

Nichols said its clear the players in the Rutgers practice video had broken self esteems and were used to that kind of abuse, some he says no player or person should ever have to stand for.

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