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Fomer UK athletics administrator Russell Rice dies

(h/t @Ukathletics)

(h/t @Ukathletics)

(h/t @Ukathletics)

A legend of University of Kentucky Athletics Russell Rice died Friday. Rice spent 20 years from 1967-87 with UK Athletics as an administrator in the athletics department, including 18 of those years as a sports information director.

In retirement, Rice lived in Florida. He was never quite retired, however, as he continued to write a column for the Cats’ Pause and write several books, one he was working on at the time of his death. 

Rice was a Marine during World War II, but returned after the war to graduate as a Cat. After graduation he held several jobs before joining the Cats as a staff member, including working as the sports editor for the Lexington Leader.

He was also inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011.

Oscar Combs took to twitter last night to remember his friend:

Sadden to hear great friend & mentor, retired UK SID Russell Rice has passed away at age of 90 in Florida where he has lived past 22 years. There was no greater historian of UK sports & Adolph Rupp than Rice who also once was sports writer for Lex. Leader before joining UK.

Prior to coming to Lexington in early 1950s, he worked for newspapers in Hazard & Whitesburg after graduating from UK in 1951. Rice wrote weekly columns in Cats’ Pause for almost 20 years & was TCP managing editor in 1992. He was WW II veteran. Arrangements pending.

Russell was always a great friend, 1 who always encouraged & helped young journalists strive for success. He’s a member of UK Athletic HOF. Services for Mr. Rice will be held at a later date in Lexington according to his family. Will post the date & time when it becomes known.


Several others took to twitter to share thoughts and the work of Rice during his tenure at Kentucky:































You will be missed. Mr. Rice.



Article written by Courtney Hessler

Ashley Judd is my spirit animal. Follow me on twitter at: @Hessler_KSR