Former Utah Valley standout Ronnie Price never anticipated his basketball career would take him to Utah – and he certainly never expected it would land him in the Beehive State twice. Price starred at UVU from 2002-05 and put the Wolverines on the proverbial basketball map. His contributions to the university reach beyond the basketball court.
His tenure at UVU extends back to the days of UVSC and junior college basketball. As the Wolverines feasted their eyes on transitioning to division I, with hopes of becoming a university, Price stayed in Orem to help see it through. His performance on the court no doubt made it possible for the Wolverines to compete at a high level as the transition was underway.
UVSC was the first institution to make the transition from junior college to a university without first competing as a division II or III school. While there are many factors that contributed to the success of UVU, Price’s accomplishments brought UVSC attention money can’t buy.
His 24.3 average as a Wolverine ranks first all-time and became the first player to go directly to the NBA from UVU. He began his career in the Sacramento Kings summer league, where he proved himself worthy to win a roster spot. Playing alongside Mike Bibby, Price learned the pro game and excelled in the NBA as an energy provider off the bench. His solid play – and perhaps his viscous dunk over Carlos Boozer – caught the attention of the Utah Jazz.
In 2007, the Utah Jazz offered Price a free agent contract, bringing him back to Utah in pursuit of an NBA championship. As a Jazzman, Price has backed up Deron Williams, providing a sparkplug effect on the team.
Current and former Wolverines swell with pride every time Price is introduced as having played his college ball at Utah Valley. His tough work ethic and no nonsense, lets-get-down-to-business attitude has made him a shining example of what it means to be a Wolverine.
Price will be inducted into the UVU athletic Hall of Fame at halftime of the men’s basketball game on Feb. 4. Price will sign autographs following the game and the first 1,000 fans will receive a piece of Ronnie Price memorabilia.