In 1938: The Rice Owls football team wins the Southwest Conference championship, marking the first conference championship in program history.
In 1940: The Rice Owls men’s basketball team wins the Southwest Conference championship, marking the first conference championship in program history.
In 2003: The Rice Owls women’s basketball team wins the Western Athletic Conference championship, earning a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history.
Trevor Cobb is one of the most notable football players to have competed for the Rice Owls. He played running back for Rice from 1989 to 1992 and had an outstanding college career. Cobb still holds several Rice and NCAA records, including the record for most career all-purpose yards in NCAA Division I-A history with 7,730 yards. During his time ...
In 2006: The Rice Owls football team wins the Conference USA championship, earning a spot in the Liberty Bowl, which they win over the Western Michigan Broncos.
History of the Owls
Rice Owls sports teams have a long and storied history in NCAA athletics. The Owls first fielded a team in 1912, making them one of the oldest college sports programs in the country. Since then, Rice has won numerous conference championships and made several appearances at the NCAA tournament.
The most successful sport for Rice is undoubtedly football. The program began with great success under legendary coach Jess Neely who led them to six Southwest Conference titles from 1931-1946 before retiring after 32 seasons as head coach of the university's football program! The modern era of Owl Football saw its greatest successes come during David Bailiff's tenure as Head Coach from 2007-2016 when they won three consecutive bowl games (2008 Texas Bowl, 2009 Texas Bowl & 2010 Armed Forces Bowl) and earned multiple top 25 rankings including two Top 10 finishes (#6 AP Poll 2008 & #7 Coaches' Poll 2008).
Other notable achievements by Rice include their men’s basketball team reaching four NCAA tournaments between 1980-2005; baseball winning five straight Western Athletic Conference titles (2006–10); soccer claiming seven CUSA regular season championships since 2003; golf having eight individual national champions since 1977; track & field earning nine indoor/outdoor conference championship titles since 2006; volleyball capturing eight Southwest Conference Championships between 1984–1996 plus an additional three CUSA Championship crowns over that same period; tennis clinching ten SWC Championships from 1973 through 1995 along with another five CUSA Titles afterward until 2014 when they moved to American Athletic Association play where they've captured one more title so far this year (2020 AAC Champions). Finally, swimming has been quite successful for Rice, winning 11 conference championships since 2005!
Overall it can be said that there is something special about being an athlete or fan associated with such a historical institution like Rice University – whether you're cheering on your favorite sport or simply watching all these teams compete against each other every year - it truly makes you part of something much bigger than yourself which will last throughout generations yet to come!
College Sports Established
1973 - Present / NCAA Division 1
1921 - 1973 / University Division of the NCAA
1912 - 1921 / Athletic Association of the United States
2023 - / American Athletic Conference
2005 - 2023 / Conference USA
1996 - 2004 / Western Athletic Conference
1915 - 1996 / Southwest Conference
1912 - 1914 / Independent
Owls - Sports fans, have you ever wondered about the origins of the Rice Owls nickname? The Rice Owls is an NCAA Division I athletic program representing Rice University in Houston, Texas. The name has been around since 1912 and has a unique history.
The story begins with John W. Cox Jr., a member of the university’s first football team in 1912 and later became its coach from 1913 to 1915. During his tenure as coach, he changed their mascot from “the Cadets” to “the Owls” after seeing several owls flying over campus one night during practice which he believed was an omen for good luck on their upcoming season games! He then adopted this idea by having students dress up in owl costumes at football games and rallies throughout campus, thus always making them official mascots for the school's athletics teams!
Today, these same owls are still symbols of pride for all sports teams associated with Rice University; they even offer special merchandise featuring their beloved mascots, such as t-shirts or hats, so that fans can show off how much they love being part of Owl Nation! So next time you're cheering on your favorite college team, give some extra support (and maybe even buy something) for those proud little rice owlets out there too!
Men's Basketball 0
Women's Basketball 0
To qualify as the greatest player for this team, the player must have played one season for this team. If not, we will remove the player.
* verifies that player has played for this team as an added player by a fan.