Rice Football 2012 Bowl Capsule

Rice Owls
Conference USA


Any time Rice makes a bowl game, it is a big deal. The program went nearly 50 years between bowl appearances prior to their 2006 trip to the New Orleans Bowl. This year looked like it would be another season as usual for the Owls. In October, Rice was sitting at 2-6 and had to win their last four games to even have a shot at a bowl game. And the schedule was not too easy for Coach David Bailiff, but Rice pulled it off beating Southern Miss, Tulane, SMU and UTEP.  

2012 Record: 6-6, 4-4
Coach: David Bailiff
Coach Bowl Record: 1-0

Big Wins: 11/8 at Kansas (25-24), 11/17 SMU (36-14)
Bad Losses: 9/15 Louisiana Tech (37-56), 9/29 Houston (14-35)

The biggest thing Rice has going right now is momentum. The offense has been playing very well during the four game winning streak. Quarterback Taylor McHargue is certainly not the most potent passer in Conference USA. He has thrown for just 2,178 yards and 11 touchdowns, but McHargue is an efficient passer. He is also a great rusher and has accounted for just as many touchdowns with his legs as he has with his arm. Coach Bailiff will also put the ball in the hands of backs Charles Ross and Turner Petersen. With those three, Rice has one of the most potent ground attacks in the conference. Rice is a high scoring offense, but they can also move the chains and control the clock with their ability to run. That makes them a tough offense to deal with since they can hang on to a lead or go to the air and come from behind.

The defense has been better at the end of the season, but they still allowed nearly 445 yards per game. That is more than the offense averaged. The defense allowed 47 or more points on four occasions. Three of those were in the first four games of the season, so the improvement is there, but some improvement may not be enough to win a bowl game. Defensive end Cody Bauer is the key pass rusher on a team that is pretty good getting into the backfield. But Rice will have to be able to get consistent pressure with the front four to help ease the tension on the secondary. If that happens, the Owls can force a big turnover or two and have shot at pulling off a big win.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Charles Ross, RB, 743 yards
Passing: Taylor McHargue, QB, 2,178 yards
Receiving: Jordan Taylor, WR, 673 yards
Tackles: Paul Porras, S, 86
Sacks: Cody Bauer, DE, 5.5
Interceptions: Three tied with 2

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 201.25 (29th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Passing Offense: 219.83 (74, 10)
Total Offense: 421.08 (49, 4)
Scoring Offense: 31.75 (41, 5)
Rushing Defense: 192.75 (91, 7)
Pass Defense: 250.83 (82, 7)
Total Defense: 443.58 (94, 9)
Scoring Defense: 31.33 (88, 7)
Turnover Margin: 0.42 (40, 3)
Sacks: 2.08 (50, 4)
Sacks Allowed: 2.58 (96, 9)

Recent Bowl Appearances:
2008    Texas Bowl        Western Michigan (38-14)
2006    New Orleans Bowl    Troy (17-41)
1961    Bluebonnet Bowl    Kansas (7-33)
1960    Sugar Bowl        Mississippi (6-14)
1957    Cotton Bowl        Navy (7-20)

*all team stats through 11/24


Bowl Central

Rice Shop