Senior Advisor to the Head Coach
Ricardo Patton joined Jerry Stackhouse’s staff in May of 2019 as senior advisor to the head coach. Patton comes to Nashville after three seasons as an assistant coach at Denver and 15 seasons at the Division I level as the head coach at Colorado and Northern Illinois.
Patton serves as an advisor and consultant to Stackhouse, and oversees communication efforts with the strength and conditioning, athletic training, and nutrition staffs. He also oversees fundraising and special projects, donor relations, season ticket sales, and hosts the program’s special guests.
Patton is a graduate of Nashville’s Hume Fogg High School and played at Belmont from 1976-80, where he was a small-college All-American as a senior and member of the school’s sports hall of fame. His coaching career began in 1985 at Two Rivers Middle School in Nashville after spending five years as a studio cameraman at WTVF-TV. He also coached at Hillwood High School in 1986-87. Patton coached locally at Middle Tennessee (1988-90) and Tennessee State (1991-93) early in his coaching career.
Patton brought extensive Division I head coaching experience to the Vanderbilt staff, having spent 11 seasons with the Buffaloes (1996-2007) and compiling a 184-160 overall record while leading Colorado to six postseason tournaments, including NCAA appearances in 1997 and 2003. The Buffaloes defeated Bobby Knight’s Indiana team in the first round of the 1997 tournament before falling to a Dean Smith-led North Carolina unit in the round of 32. During the 2003 season, Colorado defeated two eventual Final Four teams in Kansas and Texas, and in his time in Boulder, Patton led the Buffaloes to six seasons of 18 or more victories.
He also served as the head coach at Northern Illinois from 2007-2011 and at Central (Tenn.) High School from 2012-16.
Patton has been married for 39 years to his wife, Jennifer. They have two sons, Ricardo Jr. and Michael. Patton is a fifth-degree black belt in Taekwondo and enjoys golf and horseback riding in his free time.