May 9, 2017
CINCINNATI – Former University of Cincinnati men’s basketball and football player Rodrick Monroe passed away Sunday in Houston, Texas. He was 41.
Monroe lettered two seasons in basketball (1996, 1997) and one in football (1997) at Cincinnati and later was a member of the 1998 Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl XXXIII squad. Originally selected by Dallas in the seventh round of the 1998 NFL Draft, Monroe’s NFL career spanned five seasons, seeing most of his action with Cleveland where he played in seven games in 2001.
Considered the strongest member of two Bearcats basketball teams with a bench press of 415 pounds and leg press of 1,180 pounds, Monroe was a key reserve in the post at 6-foot-4, 240 pounds. He helped UC register a 54-13 record during his two seasons that included two Conference USA regular-season titles, a league tournament crown and trips to the 1996 NCAA Southeast Regional finals and 1997 NCAA Midwest Regional second round. He backed up Danny Fortson inside during his senior season, averaging 4.6 points and 2.5 rebounds in 12.0 minutes. He averaged 3.9 points and 2.7 rebounds in 11.2 minutes for his career.
On the football field, Monroe was a talented run blocking tight end who played in every game with four starts during the 1997 campaign. He caught two passes for 33 yards and one touchdown.
Monroe came to Cincinnati from McLennan Community College in Waco, Texas. He was a native of Hearne, Texas.
"Rod was a great person who made everyone smile. He had always remained close with our program. Every time we played at Houston he was in the locker room motivating the players and giving us that great big hug. His passing is so sudden. Many of his old teammates are in shock. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends. He will be missed by us all."
- Mick Cronin, Cincinnati Men's Basketball Head Coach