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Rice University


Ashikaga

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I've just taken an interest in Rice University. Has there ever been any year(s) that it won any championship? The only pro football player who comes to my mind who attended Rice was Tommy Kramer. When I attended the University of Arkansas from 1984-86, I remember that Rice University was in the same conference.

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This is from http://riceowls.collegesports.com/faciliti...ce-stadium.html

The Stadium has a storied history, borne from the University's football tradition. Fifty-three years ago, Rice fielded one of its greatest teams. The 1949 Owls, led by all-Americas Froggy Williams and Joe Watson, won the Southwest Conference championship and the 1950 Cotton Bowl with a 10-1 record. The Owls posted an 8-4 overall record, their best record since 1950. In that span, Rice was 5-0 at home.

However, old Rice Stadium (now the Rice Track/Soccer Stadium) seated less than 37,000 fans. Houston's civic leaders decided the old structure was not a proper venue for the SWC champions, much less a city with a future so bright. The idea for the new Rice Stadium was born.

Rice Stadium was also the site for JFK's famous moon speech.

http://vesuvius.jsc.nasa.gov/er/seh/ricetalk.htm

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Is that why the stadium is so big?

It's kind of funny it's so big but they never fill it up.

It is so big because it was built in 1949 to handle overflow crowds watching the Southwest Conference champion Rice Owls. It was a construction marvel, being designed and built in only 9 months.

Here's a good link on the stadium.

http://www.sfo.com/~csuppes/NCAA/WAC/index...?Rice/index.htm

EDIT: Sorry, nmainguy. You beat me to it.

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Rice's football isn't going to go away. Rice U has more than enough $$$ to make sure that never happens; we're talking about the school that used to own Yankee Stadium.

All that being said, they're not a great team. More often than not they're an average-to-bad team. Now if they'd stop beating my alma mater, UH, everything in this world would be A-OK. :lol:

Go Coogs!

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It is so big because it was built in 1949 to handle overflow crowds watching the Southwest Conference champion Rice Owls.  It was a construction marvel, being designed and built in only 9 months.

Here's a good link on the stadium.

http://www.sfo.com/~csuppes/NCAA/WAC/index...?Rice/index.htm

EDIT:  Sorry, nmainguy.  You beat me to it.

No problem, Red...I seem to remember all the money was raised by some local Houston socialites who couldn't bear to have to share a stadium with those common Cougars :lol:

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Rice athletes' grade point averages tend to be some of the highest among college athletes accross the country.

Which is why they arent very good.

All the really good players (regardless of how smart they are) would rather play at a place they can atleast attempt to pass without much worry, Rice is a tough school and hence atheletes dont want to play there unless thats what is important to them.

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Yeah, LSU's baseball team usually is full of 3.0 and 3.5 students. Some higher, and many of them aren't in a general studies course to be qualified as a college student.

People who put a lot into there school work can still be athletes, just as long as they can handle both.

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What are you saying exactly?  Most people still have to be very smart to get into rice.

That's exactly what I'm saying. Rice University must have always been known for smart students. That's all that I know about that university. I graduated from Arkansas State with a 2.26 GPA, which means that I wouldn't have stood a chance of getting to go to Rice.

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That's exactly what I'm saying.  Rice University must have always been known for smart students.  That's all that I know about that university.  I graduated from Arkansas State with a 2.26 GPA, which means that I wouldn't have stood a chance of getting to go to Rice.

Has Rice University ever played in the Cotton Bowl or in any other bowl game?

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As an aside, I think Rice and other "elite" schools would be better off if they left their current NCAA conferences and formed their own. Schools like Baylor, Vanderbilt, et al, just can't compete with the likes of OU, Texas, Tennessee, Auburn, etc.

If the "academically-gifted athletic schools" would create their own conference (consisting of, say, SMU, Vanderbilt, Baylor, Rice, Tulane, et al), the games would probably be pretty competitive.

Then again, now that I think about it, I'm not sure there are even 8 qualified Division I schools out there that could justify creating a new conference! I mean, what other "smart" D-I schools located in the SE quadrant of the US have a football team?

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Many of those small schools find ways to compete. Baylor for example has great baseball, tennis, and women's basketball. They are only weak in football and men's basketball. They are weak in basketball because of the recent scandal and subsequent sanctions to their program.

As far as these schools being "too smart" to compete they obviously can by Duke and Rice's example.

On another topic schools such as UT and A&M consistently rank ahead of SMU and Baylor in academic surveys. A school's committment to academics has nothing to do with their committment to athletics.

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As an aside, I think Rice and other "elite" schools would be better off if they left their current NCAA conferences and formed their own.  Schools like Baylor, Vanderbilt, et al, just can't compete with the likes of OU, Texas, Tennessee, Auburn, etc. 

If the "academically-gifted athletic schools" would create their own conference (consisting of, say, SMU, Vanderbilt, Baylor, Rice, Tulane, et al), the games would probably be pretty competitive. 

Then again, now that I think about it, I'm not sure there are even 8 qualified Division I schools out there that could justify creating a new conference!  I mean, what other "smart" D-I schools located in the SE quadrant of the US have a football team?

How about TCU, SMU, Rice, Baylor, Tulane, Vandy, Duke and Miami? Of course, Duke and Miami would never leave the ACC, and Baylor wouldn't leave the Big 12 unless they kicked them out for Arkansas, and Vandy would never leave the SEC, but there's 8 small, academically talented schools for you.

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There still is the possiblity of Rice axing football in the future.  It wasn't about Rice having enough money for football.  It was about whether there's a need for it at such a very small university, and it's lack of a great number of fans.

Everything I have heard on this subject concerns moving the football program to a different division so they can compete with similar size schools. Right now they are Division 1. By moving to Division 1aa, 2, or 3 they could compete better than they are.

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As an aside, I think Rice and other "elite" schools would be better off if they left their current NCAA conferences and formed their own.  Schools like Baylor, Vanderbilt, et al, just can't compete with the likes of OU, Texas, Tennessee, Auburn, etc. 

If the "academically-gifted athletic schools" would create their own conference (consisting of, say, SMU, Vanderbilt, Baylor, Rice, Tulane, et al), the games would probably be pretty competitive. 

Then again, now that I think about it, I'm not sure there are even 8 qualified Division I schools out there that could justify creating a new conference!  I mean, what other "smart" D-I schools located in the SE quadrant of the US have a football team?

When I was in college, I was talking to a professor who attended Cornell. I asked him why Ivy League universities didn't have bowl games. He said that it was because it interfered with academics.

Do you think that Rice University would qualify as Ivy League? Then it would play only Harvard, Yale, Brown, etc.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Stanford fields a good football program, and they aren't exactly an average school. In fact, Stanford always wins out that award for most outstanding overall athletic program in the nation beating out UT Austin. So being smart isn't exclusive to having a good athletic program.

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There was in article in the paper this weekend (still tryin to find it) about Rice football. Rice is playing schools like UCLA and Texas because they get $500,000 to lose. And that $500,000 may soon be going up to $800,000. Next year Rice will even play Florida State. These games are being played in an effort to have the football program pay for itself, and make some money.

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There was in article in the paper this weekend (still tryin to find it) about Rice football.  Rice is playing schools like UCLA and Texas because they get $500,000 to lose.  And that $500,000 may soon be going up to $800,000.  Next year Rice will even play Florida State.  These games are being played in an effort to have the football program pay for itself, and make some money.

This sort of deal has been going around for years. Why else do you think schools like Louisiana-Lafayette and the like play Texas? They do it (i) for the money, (ii) because Texas et al type schools need other "gimme" schools they can practice on early in the season, and (iii) if the "weak" schools can pull off an upset, or close to it, doing so instantly increases their profile for the year. Cases in point: University of Central Florida and Fresno State. They became "semi-famous" football schools by taking on the big guys and giving them a run for their money, no pun intended.

Also, at virtually every big school that has a football program, football is what keeps the school's entire athletic program profitable. For athletic programs to be successful financially, the key is to always have a profitable football program.

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what about good private schools:

*Notre Dame

Stanford

Northwestern

Boston College

*University of Miami

These schools have traditionally been able to compete with the big dumb state schools - and two of them (*) have become football power houses in their own right winning many national titles and bowl games between them. The best thing for football to do - is simply split up the same way the NFL did - play playoff games.

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I don't think Northwestern has "traditionally" been able to compete with other schools in its conference. They have had a few good years and lots of poor ones. And didn't BC almost cut its football program???

However, I do agree that college football needs to go to a playoff system. I always laugh when ABC commentators lament the dominance the BCS system has on college football and suggest a playoff system would be better---of course, never mentioning that ABC is one of, if not the, biggest reasons the BCS exists!

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You don't go to Rice for the football. You go to get a great education for a relatively good price. Football isn't even part of the equation.

gto:

I agree. I wonder how much outreach and support to really bright high school students-who would just die for a challanging leg-up in life-the $$ spent on sports at Rice would help. I don't mean cutting intramural sports-just the out of proportion amount of $$ spent on football, baseball and basketball.

Like you said, you go there for a great education. If you want sports, go to any of our lame-ass state supported universities.

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I've been with their foot ball team for about 4 years in the Marching Owl Band aka MOB. The team is pretty good, I've always enjoy watching them from where we sit. During the half time, our band entertains the crowds by making fun of the other team or some other type of show for simply fun! If you don't like football you just might enjoy watching the MOB. We are not your everyday marching band and better, we don't march either! B)

Edited by Aland11223
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  • 1 month later...
Which is why they arent very good.

All the really good players (regardless of how smart they are) would rather play at a place they can atleast attempt to pass without much worry, Rice is a tough school and hence atheletes dont want to play there unless thats what is important to them.

I laughed when I read this reply. The high school that I went to was called the "pretty boy's school" by other schools. Well, I'll be honest, they didn't have a good football team to speak of at all. Back when I was in high school in the 1970s, there were usually 10 games a season. I was a junior when they won five games for the first time since it opened back in 1961.

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  • 2 years later...
Rice was talkin about nixing their football program a year or two ago. If they eventually do, I'm sure it will be torn down.

How did Rice's football team do for the Fall 2007 season? When I was watching the Cotton Bowl, the sportscaster said that back in the 1954 game someone came off of the bench and tackled a Rice kickoff returner.

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I've just taken an interest in Rice University. Has there ever been any year(s) that it won any championship? The only pro football player who comes to my mind who attended Rice was Tommy Kramer. When I attended the University of Arkansas from 1984-86, I remember that Rice University was in the same conference.

They were a SWC powerhouse in the late 40s and 50s. They filled the stadium up especially when they played UT and Texas A&M. Weldon Humble, Billy Howton, King Hill, Frank Ryan, Buddy Dial, ND Kalu(sp) with the Texans,Larry Izzo with the Patriots and many more from Rice have played in the NFL. Rice has such an endowment that up until the 60s, if you were accepted to Rice the tuition was FREE. Also , from what I understand, Commerce and PE were majors open only to Athletes. They could major in other things but those were reserved for jocks. Frank Ryan who quarterbacked the Cleveland Browns got his degree in Aeronautical Engineering.

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They were a SWC powerhouse in the late 40s and 50s. They filled the stadium up especially when they played UT and Texas A&M. Weldon Humble, Billy Howton, King Hill, Frank Ryan, Buddy Dial, ND Kalu(sp) with the Texans,Larry Izzo with the Patriots and many more from Rice have played in the NFL. Rice has such an endowment that up until the 60s, if you were accepted to Rice the tuition was FREE. Also , from what I understand, Commerce and PE were majors open only to Athletes. They could major in other things but those were reserved for jocks. Frank Ryan who quarterbacked the Cleveland Browns got his degree in Aeronautical Engineering.

I've never heard of a degree in Commerce. Is it another name for Business? Yes, the only names that sound familiar are Dial and Ryan. I think Tommy Kramer is the most recent. I read that he ended up having big problems with drugs and alcohol.

i have yet to make it to a game, but i'll make sure that when i do i'll keep my eyes out for the MOB! heh

Speaking about the former Southwest Conference, is Southern Methodist University still around?

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My old high school, Baytown REL was full of Rice grads and the football team had long and old ties to Rice. My coach, Ron Kramer, played on the 1957 SWC championship team with King Hill and Dial and Frank Ryan who QBed the Cleveland Browns to the 1964 NFL championship. Our family doctor was George Walmsley an REL gridiron great and a member of the Owls' 1947 Orange Bowl Championship team.

Rice's beating of Purdue in West Lafayette on the same day in 1934 that Texas beat Notre Dame in South Bend help give the SWC national recognition. Rice Stadium (opened in 1950) was built to hold 72,000 because people were crazy for SWC football and the Owls often played before capasity crowds. Rice is one of only a few universities that has played in the Orange, Sugar and Cotton Bowls. The Owls were the SWC's 1994 co-champions.

Edited by Retama
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My old high school, Baytown REL was full of Rice grads and the football team had long and old ties to Rice. My coach, Ron Kramer, played on the 1957 SWC championship team with King Hill and Dial and Frank Ryan who QBed the Cleveland Browns to the 1964 NFL championship. Our family doctor was George Walmsley an REL gridiron great and a member of the Owls' 1947 Orange Bowl Championship team.

Rice's beating of Purdue in West Lafayette on the same day in 1934 that Texas beat Notre Dame in South Bend help give the SWC national recognition. Rice Stadium (opened in 1950) was built to hold 72,000 because people were crazy for SWC football and the Owls often played before capasity crowds. Rice is one of only a few universities that has played in the Orange, Sugar and Cotton Bowls. The Owls were the SWC's 1994 co-champions.

I've also heard that the money to build the stadium was donated by George Brown, the "Brown" in Brown & Root, Inc., today part of Halliburton.

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I've also heard that the money to build the stadium was donated by George Brown, the "Brown" in Brown & Root, Inc., today part of Halliburton.

Both George and Herman Brown as well as their wives were deeply involved with Rice - they both attended classes (but did not graduate) there, and George later served on the Board of Trustees for 25 years. There are separate buildings on campus named for George Brown, his wife Alice Pratt Brown, Herman Brown, and his wife Margarett Root Brown (Brown & Root cofounder Dan Root's sister).

From http://cedb.asce.org/cgi/WWWdisplay.cgi?8399901:

Despite his far-reaching duties in American industry, however, Brown
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My father and grandfather both told me that the union building trades picketed the stadium when it was built and boycotted functions after it was completed. Brown & Root used (out of town) non-union subcontractors and that triggered a backlash among local contractors. This boycott apparently didn't have much effect on the elites that attended games there. My father and grandfather never stepped foot in the place although I have attended a few games and concerts there through the years.

It's occupying some valuable real estate now and I'm sure the surrounding neighborhoods wouldn't cry too much if it was torn down.

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