Former NFL running back Ray Rice has been hired to coach the position at his alma mater, New Rochelle High School in New York.

NEW ROCHELLE – As players glided through warmups before Friday’s afternoon workout, Ray Rice did what he does so often at New Rochelle High School. He paced between them smiling and talking, talking and smiling, stopping one teen or another to offer the occasional piece of advice.

This has been Rice’s unofficial role for three years now since he was unofficially banished from the NFL. The only change for the 30-year-old former Huguenot star is he now has time to take a larger, more consistent role on the team’s coaching staff.

On Friday, a fellow coach even referred to him as “coach Rice.”

“Everything is the same,” said New Rochelle coach Lou DiRienzo, who was Rice’s varsity football coach from 2001-04. “Ray’s been volunteering and mentoring these kids and training these kids and coaching these kids and on the sidelines on Saturdays. He’s been a volunteer for the last three years. He just happens to have more time in his schedule now.”

Rice, who declined comment through a spokesperson, began his new role as New Rochelle’s running backs coach when the team began spring workouts Thursday.

Rice’s new duties will also include assisting the secondary, which was the other position he played during four standout seasons with the Huguenots. His tenure in New Rochelle included trips to New York’s Class AA state final in 2003 and 2004 and a 2003 state championship.

RELATED:Messiah Horne benefits from Ray Rice pep talk

HONORED: New Rochelle Walk of Fame to induct Ray Rice

RICE: Don…