Former Virginia Tech guard transfers to Maryland

The Maryland basketball team made a significant addition over the weekend.

Former Virginia Tech guard Rodney Rice announced he will be transferring to Maryland. Joe Tipton of On3 Sports was first to report the news.

“It feels like a weight off my shoulders,” Rice said via The Washington Post. “Today is just a lot of happiness and excitement. It’s the right situation for me.”

After losing seniors, Jahmir Young and Donta Scott head coach Kevin Willard had significant holes to fill. Furthermore, three Terps players entered the portal last week, including sophomores Noah Batchelor and Caelum Swanton-Rodger.

Rice is a former DeMatha alum who only played in eight games before suffering various injuries that limited him during his first year.

In those eight appearances, Rice averaged 7.4 points and 3.3 rebounds with the Hokies. 

Rice opted out of his sophomore season, and last October, he announced he was stepping away from the team. Rice, a DMV native, originally played at Bullis before transferring to DeMatha for his senior year. After an incredible year, he earned All-Met first-team honors and shortly after committed to Virginia Tech.

So why Maryland? 

He truly believes in the program and, more specifically, Willard, which is an excellent sign to see if you’re a Terps fan.

“My friends and family can come to see my play. But I also wanted to play for Coach [Kevin] Willard. He really lets his guards go, lets his guards boogie, and I feel like my game can really develop while playing for him.”

Rice’s father, also a DMV native, was a former Washington Post All-Met player of the year when he helped lead Richmond to the Sweet 16 in 1988.

Former DeMatha coach Mike Jones joined the Maryland coaching staff last spring, but his stay in College Park was brief. He didn’t even complete a season before leaving to become the head coach at his alma mater, Old Dominion.

The New Maryland Terpian also strongly believes in the team next year, highlighting players like Deshawn Harris-Smith, Derik Queen, and Julian Reese.

“I’m very confident in what we can do next year,” he said. “We already have some key pieces set in stone. We have Julian Reese,┬áDerik Queen, and Deshawn, and I think we’re still looking in the portal. I think we’re going to be really good and looking to add. We can be a dangerous team, so I’m excited.”

Maryland now has two open scholarships for next year.

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