HOUSTON (AP) -- Taylor McHargue threw for a touchdown and Jawon Davis ran for one on the next possession and Rice held on for a 17-13 win over Tulane to reach the Conference USA championship game for the first time.
The Owls (9-3, 7-1) dominated the game statistically but a date next weekend with East Division champion Marshall was in doubt until the end. Because the Owls had the higher BCS ranking, Rice will host the game at Rice Stadium.
Kick-off for the CUSA Championship Game will be at 11 a.m.
The Green Wave (7-5, 5-3) opened the scoring with a Cairo Santos field goal but McHargue hit Turner Petersen for a 19-yard score late in the first quarter. Then early in the second Davis bolted 16-yards to make it 14-3. Standout kicker Chris Boswell made it 17-3 7 seconds before halftime.
Despite holding Tulane to 123 yards of offense, a 1-14 effort on third down and holding the ball for 18 more minutes, Rice struggled to close the deal.