Mike Rhoades is officially Penn State’s head men’s basketball coach.
Welcome to Happy Valley, @CoachRhoades🦁
A proven winner and a Pennsylvania native, we are thrilled to officially announce Mike Rhoades as the next Peter and Ann Tombros Endowed Men's Basketball Head Coach → https://t.co/3RCbWQfzvD#WeAre pic.twitter.com/EyxBCCskYR
— Penn State Men’s Basketball (@PennStateMBB) March 29, 2023
Dick Weiss, a Hall of Fame sports writer, tweeted late Tuesday night that Rohades to Penn State was a done deal.
More reports came out Wednesday, and Penn State confirmed those reports with a tweet at 4:34 p.m.
In a statement, Penn State athletic director Pat Kraft described Rhoades as a “veteran head coach who is a proven winner at multiple levels.”
“Mike has been a tremendous recruiter and talent developer throughout his career,” Kraft said. “As a Pennsylvania native with a strong family history with our University, Mike understands what it means to be a Penn Stater and how impactful it is to be part of Nittany Nation. Mike has a vision of how to build Penn State Basketball into a championship program. We are thrilled to welcome Mike, Jodie, Logan, Chase and Porter to Happy Valley!”
Rhoades himself made a statement and said Penn State will be “bold, different and aggressive.”
“We will play with great energy and excitement while always being relentless in our pursuit of making this basketball family into something special,” Rhoades said. “I can’t wait to get to work.”
Rhoades, 50, had been at VCU since 2017, taking over after Will Wade moved on to coach at LSU.
He’s 129-60 overall through six seasons and 72-32 in Atlantic 10 play.
Rhoades has been to the NCAA Tournament thrice but has yet to get out of the Round of 64. This past season, Rhoades and the Rams finished 27-7 and won the A-10 regular-season and tournament championships.
VCU was a No. 12 seed in this year’s tournament and fell to fifth-seeded St. Mary’s in the Round of 64.
Rhoades assisted Shaka Smart at VCU from 2009-14 before becoming Rice’s headman. In three seasons, Rhoades finished with a losing record but made progress by the time he left. In his first two seasons, the team went 12-20. In his last one, Rice went 23-12 and made it to the CBI quarterfinal.
Mike Rhoades has ties to the Penn State area. A native of Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania, roughly two hours from State College, Rhoades played college basketball at Lebanon Valley, where he graduated in 1995. Rhoades began his college coaching career at DIII Randolph-Macon in Ashland, Virginia. He assisted there from 1996 to ’99 and became the head coach after that. In 10 seasons, Rhoades went 197-76 and made it to the NCAA Tournament four times, twice making the Sweet 16. His overall record as a college head coach is 373-188.
Penn State is coming off one of the best seasons in program history, highlighted by its first NCAA Tournament and Big Ten Championship Game appearances since 2011 and climaxing with the team’s first NCAA Tournament win since 2001. But with three players already entering the transfer portal and two of Penn State’s three signees requesting to be released from their letters of intent, Rhoades will have plenty of work to do to get the team set for this season.