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In this Jan. 17 file photo, Rutgers head coach Mike Rice reacts to play during an NCAA college basketball game against South Florida in Piscataway, N.J. Rutgers has fired Rice after a videotape aired showing him shoving, grabbing and throwing balls at players in practice and using gay slurs during practice. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)

Rice's abrasive nature apparent early on in career

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PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Jamie Dixon hired Mike Rice as an assistant at Pittsburgh in 2006, drawn by Rice's passion and ability to get into the living room of a prized recruit and close the deal.

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By WILL GRAVES

AP Sports Writer

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