The Nueva Ecija Rice Vanguards, based in Palayan Nueva Ecija, is one of the professional Filipino Basketball teams playing currently in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League ( MPBL).
The team began playing in the 2019-20 MPBL season as the Nueva Ecija MiGuard. With its continued progress in the basketball league, the team was invited to play in the Asiabasket, known as the Filbasket under the name of Nueva Ecija Capitals, and Chooks-to-go Pilipinas 3×3 in the summer of 2022.
The Nueva Ecija Rice Vanguards formally joined the MPBL and become the first major professional basketball team based in the province since the Nueva Ecija Patriots of the now-defunct Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA).
In 2022, the Rice Vanguards won their first MPBL championship after winning against Zamboanga Family’s Brand Sardines with the help of their former head coach Charles Tiu. With 21 players, coached by Jerson Cabiltes, Nueva Ecija again is showing off its talent in basketball making the most competitive team, alongside Pampanga Giant Lanterns, in the 5th MPBL season.