About Tony Rice

About Tony Rice


Tony Rice made a name for himself on the gridiron while leading Notre Dame to the 1988 national championship and finishing his career a year later with a 31-4 record as the signal caller for the Fighting Irish. He was named an All-American and the recipient of the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award as the nation’s top upperclassmen quarterback following his senior season.

In June, Rice will add another accolade to his long list of accomplishments when he receives The University of Scranton’s Peter A. Carlesimo Award at the Carlesimo Golf Tournament and Award Dinner on Monday, June 27 at the Canoe Brook Country Club in Summit, N.J. The Quandel Construction Group is the title sponsor for the event, which supports and enhances the student-athlete experience at Scranton.

Since 2011, the Peter A. Carlesimo Award, named for the late University of Scranton head coach and director of athletics, has been presented to someone who has made special contributions to athletics and Catholic education.

Rice piloted Notre Dame to a perfect 12-0 record and the school’s eighth national title in 1988, capped by the top-ranked Fighting Irish defeating third-ranked West Virginia, 34-21, in the Fiesta Bowl with Rice passing for 213 yards and two touchdowns, and adding 75 rushing yards en route to sharing MVP honors with teammate Frank Stams.

A year later, Rice nearly led the Irish to a second straight national title, but a loss to Miami in late November was Notre Dame’s only blemish on the season. The Irish rebounded to knock off top-ranked Colorado, 21-6, in the Orange Bowl with Rice tallying 149 total yards in his final collegiate game. Notre Dame finished the season ranked second in the nation.

Playing for legendary head coach Lou Holtz, Rice finished his career with 3,273 yards and 13 touchdowns through the air, and 2,049 yards and 23 touchdowns as one of the best option quarterbacks in college football history.

After completing his college career, Rice played one season for the Canadian Football League’s Saskatchewan Roughriders, two seasons with the Barcelona Dragons of the World League and one season for Munich Thunder in the Football League of Europe in 1994.

Off the field, Rice is a member of the board of directors of the Patrick’s Pals Foundation, founded by Jim ’90 and Kerry ’90 Conmy, in honor of their son, Patrick, an 18-year-old who was born with many special needs, which has left him unable to do many things for himself. The Patrick’s Pals Foundation was founded on the idea of helping children with multiple disabilities and their families get help in the form of equipment, services or both. Since its founding, Patrick’s Pals has raised more than $1 million to help families in need.

A native of South Carolina who now lives in Chicago, Rice is also active in the D.A.R.E. program, working to keep kids off drugs and away from gangs and violent behavior. He works closely with Pop Warner youth football teams, making visits and speaking to young athletes. He’s also involved in the annual Walter Camp Weekend, where current and former stars gather to celebrate Walter Camp’s legacy and complete community service work, including virtual hospital visits at last month’s event.

Rice also remains active at Notre Dame and in the South Bend area, regularly participating in Notre Dame alumni events while also working with the Center for the Homeless in South Bend and South Bend LOGAN Community Resources, Inc., which serves adults and children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.