Rice volleyball clinched the Conference USA Tournament championship for the first time since 2009 with a 3-0 sweep of Florida International University on Sunday.
It’s been a long time coming. Rice football has been dancing around the precipice for a couple of years now, veering dangerously close to an edge that would send them plummeting toward the pinnacle of national embarrassment and earn them a crown fit for no king. With Saturday’s loss to the only team that was keeping the Owls from claiming the throne, there can be no more doubt: Rice is now the worst FBS team in the country. Welcome to the inner circles of college football hell.
Whether she is diving for a dig or helping people learn English, volleyball’s Lee Ann Cunningham has consistently demonstrated her willingness to offer a helping hand.
Rice football extended its losing streak to nine games on Saturday as the Owls fell to a University of Texas, El Paso team that came into the matchup riding an FBS-high 20-game losing streak. With the loss, Rice dropped to 1-9 on the season and 0-6 in conference play. The Owls’ first and only victory of the season came in their season-opening 31-28 win over FCS opponent Prairie View A&M University.
Watching the two worst teams in the nation square off felt like living in an alternate universe. Everything appeared normal on the surface, but there were little quirks reminding me that this was no typical football game.
The second full slate of regular-season powderpuff football games took place this weekend, as after weeks of rain delays and anticipation, the standings are finally beginning to take shape. Every college except Brown was in action this weekend, with both Hanszen and McMurtry playing twice.
The men’s basketball season is fast-approaching, and the team will aim to improve upon last campaign’s win total of just seven. Scott Pera is back at the helm in his second season as head coach of the Owls. Pera says he hopes to see steady growth as the season goes on.
In the 58th minute of the Owls’ final regular season match at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, junior midfielder Lianne Mananquil received the ball after a free kick, took one touch and rocketed the game-winning shot of Rice’s 2-1 victory into the net.
The women’s basketball team has seen steady improvement over the past two seasons, to say the least. In 2016-17, the Owls won the Women’s Basketball Invitational, and last season they took it a step further by qualifying for the Women’s National Invitation Tournament. This year, the aspirations for this team are even higher; Rice is picked second (including five first place votes) in the Conference USA Preseason Coaches’ Poll. Tina Langley returns for her fourth season in charge as the Owls’ head coach.
Rice football’s season-long struggles continued on Saturday evening, as the team lost 36-17 on the road against Conference USA foe Florida International University. The Owls’ sixth straight loss dropped first-year coach Mike Bloomgren’s squad to 1-7 on the season and 0-4 in conference play. Since its season-opening victory over FCS opponent Prairie View A&M University, Rice has yet to win another game.
When Rice baseball won the College World Series in 2003, it became one of 28 teams since 1957 to have won an NCAA Championship. At the time, Wayne Graham was head coach of the Owls. Graham’s coaching career ended in 2018; in for Rice steps Matt Bragga.