Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Friday, May 24, 2024 — Houston, TX

Jack Riedel shines in senior season


Courtesy Jack Riedel

By Ana Rivera     4/16/24 10:50pm

Jack Riedel, a senior infielder for Rice’s baseball team and Houston native, transferred to Rice after a freshman season at the University of North Carolina. In his senior year, he is currently leading his team with 11 home runs and 25 RBIs.

Editor’s Note: This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Rice Thresher: Looking back at the season so far, what are some moments that stand out to you both personally and for the team? 

Jack Riedel: Knowing this is possibly my last year playing baseball at the college level, the moments that stick out the most are not particularly on the field, but more with my teammates, my best friends, people in the dugout, people in the locker room, and just making the most out of every moment during the season. 

RT: Over your years at Rice, how have you seen your skills on the field and your perspectives off the field change? 

JR: I was a young sophomore when I first got here. 

I didn't really understand too much about baseball, but I would just do my best to try to have fun. I feel like I've matured. Seeing older guys and becoming the older guy and the leader on the team, it makes you mature because you have to be a leader for the rest of the guys. 

And as far as my game goes, I feel like I've improved a lot just being here with great coaching staff who wants all their players to improve, which is really beneficial. 

RT: What have been your most challenging and rewarding experiences as a part of the Rice baseball team? 

JR: I guess the most rewarding was when we played at Minute Maid. We beat Texas Tech last year. That was a really cool game. I told Chuck this, but I grew up going to those games at Minute Maid. with my parents, and I would skip school to go watch the college games at Minute Maid. So getting to go over there and actually do it was really cool. 

RT: What preparations are you making for life after college, both in sports and outside of sports? 

JR: Hopefully I get the chance to play at the next level. 

If I do get the chance, I'm totally going to do it. And other than that, right now I'm just kind of meeting with people, interviewing and exploring my options. 

RT: How do you and your teammates support each other during challenging times in the season and how do you all celebrate the victories and the upsides? 

JR: So for this team, we're all really close and we all understand that baseball is a game of failure. We're all going to fail. We're all going to strike out. We're all going to make errors. We're all going to give up home runs. 

But what gets us through it is, I would say, each other. It's really cool being on a team where everybody gets along so well and there's no outsiders, but everybody's going for the same thing. 

RT: Looking back, what advice would you give to your freshman self about navigating the challenges and opportunities of college baseball? 

JR: Oh man, that's a tough one. I would say, as a freshman, I was really hard on myself. Even as a sophomore, I was really hard on myself. Even as a junior, I was really hard on myself and I'm still hard on myself now. 

I would try to give someone this advice. It's hard to take it. But I would say stop trying so hard. I would say stop pressing so hard. Stop being so hard on yourself. It's a game of failure and you're going to fail. The sooner you can figure that out the better.

RT: What are you looking forward to most this season and what are you most excited about?

JR: I don't know if you were at the game yesterday, but we all changed our walk-off songs to 2000s music. It was really cool, everybody on the team did it. It was cool to see everybody buy in for that. It honestly changed the entire energy in the dugout, and it's just things like that that other teams probably wouldn't do, but our team is close enough and we're gonna do it, and I'm just excited to see where that takes us.

More from The Rice Thresher

SPORTS 5/4/24 2:36pm
Rice’s Luke McCaffrey selected by Commanders in NFL Draft

The Washington Commanders selected Rice wide receiver Luke McCaffrey with the 100th overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.  McCaffrey was the final pick in the third round, as well as the final pick on the second day of the draft. He’ll compete for a prominent role in the wide receiver room, potentially slotting in as their starting slot receiver alongside Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson.

SPORTS 4/16/24 10:54pm
MMA and milk miles: Rice students engage with sports

It’s not uncommon to find yourself walking to Reckling Park to watch the baseball team or to the recreational fields to play soccer. However, Division I and intramural sports are only a sliver of what the greater Rice community takes part in. From cricket to mixed martial arts to milk miles (yes, milk miles), students engage in a variety of sports that are a testament to their past pastimes, new endeavors and the need to destress. 


Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.