University of Rhode Island Basketball Staff Update

Rhode Island men’s basketball staff members Christen Cunningham and Benny Sander have been promoted to assistant coaches, and Chandler Graves has been named as the program’s director of basketball operations.

Cunningham and Sander both are entering their second season with the Rams. Cunningham joined head coach Archie Miller‘s staff in July of 2022 as its director of player development. Sander has been with the Rams since April of 2022 as the program’s chief of staff. He will retain the chief of staff title in addition to being an assistant coach.

In January of 2023, the NCAA Division I Council voted to increase the number of assistant coaches permitted on each staff for several sports. In men’s basketball, the number of assistants was increased to five.

“Christen and Benny both have strong basketball minds, and they both have made an impact on this program over the last year,” Miller said. “With the changes instituted by the NCAA, it allows them to take a more active role with on-court development for our players. This is an important and well-earned designation for Christen and Benny.”

Cunningham and Sander join Kenny JohnsonDuane Woodward and Austin Carroll on Miller’s coaching staff.

Graves comes to Rhode Island from Northern Illinois, where he spent the 2022-23 season as a graduate assistant video coordinator. Familiar to Miller, he was a student manager with the Indiana men’s basketball program from 2019-21 also spent one season as a strength and conditioning intern with the team. Graves also was a graduate assistant with the UC Santa Barbara men’s basketball program during the 2021-22 season.

“Chandler is a bright, young professional who I have worked with previously,” Miller said. “He understands how we want to operate the program and will be a key piece in the day-to-day logistics for Rhode Island basketball.”

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