MIAMI, September 25 - The Miami HEAT has hired Ruth Riley to be the team’s TV Studio and Radio Analyst beginning this season. In her dual role, Riley will assume the radio analyst responsibilities for all HEAT home games and will serve as the television studio analyst for all HEAT road games on FOX Sports Sun. Riley will also appear during home pre and post games shows on the team’s exclusive television partner and will contribute to the organization’s overall community service goals as a liaison.
“We are delighted to welcome Ruth Riley back into the HEAT Family as the newest member of our award-winning broadcast team,” said Michael McCullough, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of The HEAT Group. “Ruth’s knowledge of the game, her championship pedigree and her work ethic made her the perfect choice for us.”
Riley is uniquely qualified for the role, given her extensive basketball experience, knowledge and pedigree. Born in Kansas, she grew up in Indiana and later played college basketball at Notre Dame. Riley won the Naismith Award as a senior in 2001. That same season, she scored the decisive points in the championship game to lead the Irish to their first NCAA Women’s Basketball Title. For her efforts, she was named the Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. Upon graduating from Notre Dame with Summa Cum Laude honors, the Miami SOL selected her with the fifth overall pick in the 2001 WNBA Draft. Riley would play two seasons for the SOL before landing with the Detroit Shock. The former All-Star would be part of two WNBA Championship teams in Detroit (2003 and 2006), and was named the WNBA Finals MVP in 2003. She was the first woman to be named MVP of both an NCAA and WNBA Championship team. Riley has also won two NWBL Titles, a EuroCup Championship, and was a member of the 2004 U.S. Olympic team that captured the gold medal in Athens. Riley played with five teams during her 13-year WNBA career and served as the first Vice President of the WNBA Players Association in nine of those seasons.
“I am thrilled to re-join the HEAT Family as the newest member of their very talented and reputable broadcast team,” said Riley. “As a rookie in 2001, Miami provided me the perfect foundation for a long and successful WNBA career, and I am incredibly excited to now embark on my NBA rookie broadcasting season back in South Florida where it all began.”
Riley has previous broadcast experience in both television and radio roles. She has served as a TV and radio analyst for Notre Dame’s women’s basketball program in each season since 2002, covering several of their recent Final Four appearances. During her time in San Antonio, Riley spent time calling games for both the G-League affiliate team and the WNBA San Antonio Shock, while simultaneously serving as their general manager.
“We are thrilled to have Ruth join our roster of HEAT on-air talent for the upcoming NBA season,” said Steve Tello, SVP / GM of FOX Sports Florida and FOX Sports Sun. “Ruth’s basketball expertise and love for the game will surely add a unique perspective to the broadcast. We look forward to hearing her commentary and analysis before and after HEAT games on FOX Sports Sun.”
Riley has remained close to the game since her playing days ended in 2013. She has served as a global ambassador and spokesperson for the NBA/WNBA, traveling the world as part of various initiatives aimed at positively affecting families and children. The WNBA San Antonio Stars tabbed her to become their General Manager in 2016, where for two years she oversaw all aspects of the team’s business and basketball operations. Most recently, she has served as the Global Director of Women’s Programs at the NBA Academy, which focuses on the growth and establishment of elite basketball training centers around the world to develop top international male and female prospects.
A devoted humanitarian, Riley has been involved with a number of noteworthy causes throughout her career. Since 2006, she has been a spokesperson for the United Nations and was one of the founding spokespeople for the UNF’s Malaria Initiative, “NothingButNets,” the largest grassroots movement to fight malaria. Her work has included hands-on support in Nigeria, Angola, and Mali to participate in net distribution. In 2012, she joined the Share our Strength movement in their specific focus to end childhood hunger and has remained extremely active in their “No Kid Hungry” campaign.
“We are excited Ruth will be joining the HEAT Radio team and to have her on Entercom’s 790 The Ticket in Miami,” said Keriann Worley, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Miami. “Ruth has deep basketball roots, knows the HEAT organization and will make HEAT broadcasts on The Ticket an even greater listen. We look forward to having her on-air.”
In 2016, Riley earned her Executive MBA degree from her alma mater, completing the Notre Dame program with the highest honors.
Ruth will make her broadcast debut for the HEAT alongside Mike Inglis on the HEAT’s Radio Network during the team’s first home preseason game on October 8th vs. the Orlando Magic.
Riley will be available via a conference call on Tuesday, October 2nd at to answer questions and to discuss her new role. Details will be distributed in a subsequent advisory.