On November 14, 2018, Rick Schantz was officially named the fourth head coach in club history.
Schantz took over the club as interim head coach on June 10th following the departure of previous head coach Patrice Carteron, who left the club to manage Egyptian powerhouse Al Ahly FC. Schantz went unbeaten in his first four matches in charge of the club, was named “USL Coach of the Month” by the League, and compiled a 12-7-1 record during the rest of the 2018 regular season. Under his guidance, the club finished the year third place in the Western Conference.
Following the regular season, Schantz led the club to its first-ever playoff win on October 19, a 3-0 win over Portland Timbers 2, and eventually led the team to its first-ever Western Conference Championship title following a 2-1 win over Orange County Soccer Club. Rising FC fell short in the USL Cup Final to Louisville City FC 0-1.
Schantz joined the Phoenix Rising FC coaching staff as an assistant coach on January 9, 2017. Prior to his time with Phoenix Rising, Schantz was the head coach for Premier Development League soccer team FC Tucson. During his tenure, the team had a winning record of 71-22-17 (a .645 winning percentage) and won three consecutive division titles. He also helped the team reach the Western Conference Finals in three consecutive seasons. In 2013, he led FC Tucson into the third round of the U.S. Open Cup, eliminating two professional clubs in the process.
Schantz also worked in youth soccer in Tucson for 20 years coaching several teams across a variety of ages in the Tucson soccer community. He founded Calcio FC while constructing and maintaining the club’s fields. Schantz also organized the Gunners Competitive Program at Fort Lowell Soccer Club, which helped the club grow threefold to over 900 members. Recently, he was a coach with the CDO Soccer Club while serving on its Board of Directors.
As a Tucson native, Schantz played his high school soccer at Salpointe Catholic High School, and in 1992 he was selected for the United States U17 National Team Pool. He went on to play his college soccer at the University of Portland, where he helped the Pilots win a conference championship and reach the NCAA College Cup in 1995.