Glenn Anton “Doc” Rivers was born on October 13, 1961, in Chicago, Illinois. His parents were Grady and Bettye Rivers and he grew up with an older brother, Grady Rivers Jr. The Philadelphia 76ers head coach has four children from his marriage to Kristen Rivers: Jeremiah, Callie, Austin and Spencer.
Here’s what you need to know about Doc Rivers’ family:
1. Doc Rivers Was Raised by His Parents, Police Officer Grady Rivers & Bettye Rivers, & He Was Very Close to Them
Rivers grew up in Maywood, Illinois, and attended Proviso East High School, where he played basketball. His parents were Grady Rivers, a police officer, and Bettye Rivers, who worked on the assembly line at Automatic Electric, the Orange County Register reported.
Rivers looked up to his father, who taught him basketball and showed his sons the importance of discipline. He was well-respected in the community, where he coached several youth teams. “My dad lived in the community,” Rivers told NBA.com. “If we’re walking down the street, it was, ‘Hey Sergeant Rivers, hey Mr. Rivers.’ Everywhere. My dad coached the football team, basketball team and Little League baseball team. My house was full of people everyday. He was more than a cop. He was a community leader.”
Grady Rivers, who worked his way up to lieutenant in the police force, was also an excellent baseball player, according to Rivers’ brother Grady Jr. “I have never seen anybody hit a baseball as far as my dad could hit a baseball. He could hit a baseball a country mile,” he told the Philadelphia Inquirer. But he wasn’t just a talented baseball player, as he also played basketball at Kentucky State University, and was a star ping-pong player and golfer, the publication reported.
Rivers was also very close to his mother, who was a big fan of the Proviso East High School basketball team, even before her son joined the team. “She loved basketball,” Rivers said of his mother Bettye. “I went to every single Proviso East game from the time I was in the first grade until I played. I missed one game maybe. She was the one who took me. That’s when I learned to love basketball.”
Rivers said his mother was “everything” to the family, as she cooked, cleaned and always put her family first. “She gave it all to us,” he told the Register. “She’d wake us up at 5:30 in the morning to cook breakfast because she would have to leave. We’d go back to sleep for a few hours until my dad pulled up in the cop car and yelled, ‘Rise and shine,’ like we were Army brats.”
Rivers’ father died on November 4, 2007. His mother died on June 19, 2015.
2. Doc Rivers & Kristen Rivers Had 4 Kids Together, 3 Sons & 1 Daughter
Doc and Kristen Rivers met at Marquette University, where Rivers was a basketball star. Kristen Rivers, née Campion, was a native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the Orlando Sentinel reported. They married in 1986 and had four children together.
The eldest, Jeremiah Rivers, was born on July 27, 1987. He was followed by their only daughter, Callie Rivers, on September 17, 1989. Three years later, their son Austin Rivers was born on August 1, 1992. The youngest, Spencer Rivers, was born on June 27, 1995.
All of Rivers’ children grew up playing sports and were very talented. Jeremiah Rivers played basketball throughout college at Georgetown University and Indiana University. That was followed by a stint overseas in Serbia then with the Maine Red Claws in the NBA G-League, NBC Sports reported.
According to his LinkedIn, Jeremiah Rivers graduated with a degree in business administration and management and is now the co-founder of Player Edition, a “tech platform for athletes to launch fan communities, built on NFT technology with web3 values,” its website states.
Callie Rivers was also a talented collegiate athlete, playing volleyball at the University of Florida followed by a short stint in Puerto Rico. Austin Rivers has taken his basketball career the furthest and is currently playing in the NBA for the Minnesota Timberwolves. The youngest, Spencer Rivers, played college ball at the University of California Irvine, where he studied sociology.
Rivers said his son Spencer came to visit him in Boston a lot when he was coaching the Celtics and they joked that the youngest Rivers child was the “coach of the group,” Rivers told the Boston Herald in 2010.
“A 13-year-old kid, since he’s been 10 he’s been jumping on planes by himself,” he added. “He comes up on the weekend, I meet him at the gate and he hangs out… He’s the coach of the group — that’s what [assistants Tom Thibodeau] Thibs and Armond [Hill] always say, because he’s very opinionated.” In fact, Spencer Rivers is still by his father’s side now at the Sixers, where he works as a Skill Development Coach.
In addition to their four children, Rivers and his now-ex-wife Kristen became the legal guardians of Adam Jones, the Inquirer wrote. Jones shared that he was raised the same as the other Rivers children and calls his adoptive parents mom and dad.
“I feel like I was born a Rivers,” he told the NCAA in 2013. “I get the same punishments they do. I get the same privileges they do. Being with the Rivers is just different. We don’t have to go out and do things. We can sit at the kitchen table, and it just feels like I belong. It’s like, it’s my family from day one.” Jones now works as the Basketball Director and Professional Educator at Scholar Athlete Leadership Academy in New Jersey.
3. One of Doc Rivers’ Sons, Austin Rivers, Is an NBA Player With the Minnesota Timberwolves
Rivers has had perhaps the most complicated relationship with his son Austin Rivers, who now plays for the Timberwolves. The former Los Angeles Clippers head coach traded for his son in 2015 and Austin Rivers played for his father for just over three seasons. Rivers said it was a difficult decision to sign his son and said, “You didn’t want to risk that relationship or the relationship with your family,” he told Grantland.
He shared that he was also worried about how the trade would be perceived by his other players. Rivers’ daughter Callie shared his doubts. “To be honest, I didn’t think it was going to be the best idea in the world,” she told the publication. “I was really nervous for how it was going to look and how people were going to portray it, but then [Doc] kind of explained to me that he had the support of the team and his staff was actually pushing him to do it.”
Rivers didn’t give his son any special treatment and was just as hard on Austin Rivers as on any other player. His son agreed, sharing, “He doesn’t care if I’m his son. If I do bad stuff: ‘Get on the bench.’ He says s*** to me that he says to other players. I think that surprised other players.” That said, Austin Rivers said he didn’t take it personally and wanted to show that he’d earned his place on the roster.
He shared that even on teams that his father wasn’t coaching, he always felt pressure from the Rivers family name. “Everybody was like, ‘You’re only in the league because of your dad.’ That comment I’ve heard too many times,” he told The Ringer’s “The Ryen Russilo Podcast.” “I played for my dad for two and a half years. I’ve been in the league for 10. There’s a reason why and that’s because I’m one of the best basketball players in the world. But when you play for your dad, that s*** just gets discredited.”
Austin Rivers has two kids, a son named Kayden James Rivers from a past relationship and a boy named Reign that he shares with his fiancée Audreyana Michelle.
4. Doc Rivers’ Daughter, Callie Rivers, Was a Star Volleyball Player & Is Now Married to NBA Star Seth Curry
Rivers’ only daughter, Callie Rivers Curry, was into sports just as much as her brothers but pursued volleyball instead. She was a star player at the University of Florida from 2007 to 2010, where she studied telecommunications. After college, she played briefly for the Leonas de Ponce in the Liga de Voleibol Superior Femenina de Puerto Rico.
Rivers Curry spoke about her father’s support when she was playing collegiate volleyball and said he’d always text her before and after her games. “He always tries to pump me up before each match,” she told the Gainesville Sun. “After the game he says good job, then he gives me a critique. I’m not sure how much he knows about volleyball, but he knows about sports. Attitude is what he likes. He loves aggressiveness, that’s the main thing he preaches.”
Now, Rivers Curry often appears as a guest co-host of the “Bachelor Party” podcast alongside The Ringer’s Juliet Litman. The two women discuss and recap the latest in reality TV news, especially “The Bachelor,” “The Bachelorette” and “Bachelor in Paradise.” She also worked as an executive at the sports division of Creative Artists Agency (CAA), she shared with Beyond the W.
Rivers Curry is now married to NBA star Seth Curry of the Brooklyn Nets, who also played for Coach Rivers in Philadelphia before his trade to the Nets. Rivers said he couldn’t be happier for his daughter to be with Curry, sharing, “As my mom and dad would say, ‘They’ve just been raised right.’ They [the Currys] are just terrific kids, and that is a credit to [their parents] Sonya and Dell,” he told Andscape.
The couple has two children, a daughter named Carter Curry who was born in May 2018 and a son named Cash Curry, who was born in November 2021. In April 2023, Rivers Curry announced that she was pregnant with their third child.
5. Doc Rivers Has 2 Other Family Members Who Made It to the NBA
Rivers wasn’t the only one in his family who made it to the NBA as his uncle, Jim Brewer, was selected second overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 1973 NBA Draft. He played at the same high school as Rivers, Proviso East High School, and was the first basketball player to have his jersey number retired by the school, the Inquirer reported.
He became an NBA champion in 1982 when he was playing with the Los Angeles Lakers, who defeated the Sixers in the Final. Rivers also has a cousin, Byron Irvin, who was drafted 22nd overall by the Portland Trail Blazers in the 1989 NBA Draft.
The Sixers coach is very close to his brother, Grady Rivers Jr., who he said, “takes care of me just as much as I take care of him,” he told the Inquirer. “I think people think taking care of each other is financial. No, it doesn’t. It [means] emotional. It means everything.” He said he’s won and lost a lot throughout his career as a player and then as a coach. “And the one person I notice is there every time is my brother,” he shared. “So that’s why family means a lot.”