HOUSTON - We kick off our College football preview with one of two teams on our list that won their conference title last year.

The Rice Owls

Head coach David Bailiff has his guys ready to roll towards a repeat and while they lose a lot of seniors, they return some very key pieces.

After years of seeing Taylor McHargue under center, the Owls turn the reigns of an offense that returns 5 starters over to junior Driphus Jackson. The dual threat quarterback showed what he could do with both his arm and his legs when given the chance and he's ready for the challenge.

Jackson will have multiple weapons to work with including wide receiver Jordan Taylor.

Taylor is a dynamic talent that has only gotten better through the years. At running back Derik Dillard and Luke Turner replace Charles Ross and they will run behind an experienced front five which has 3 seniors and 2 juniors.

On defense, the star of the group is Christian Covington.

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The junior has been named to several pre-season watch lists and will only get better after a productive 2013. As a whole, the defense returns 6 starters, including two huge playmakers in the secondary.

Cy Woods product Bryce Callahan has 11 interceptions during his time at Rice. He and Malcom Hill should hold the opposition passing attack in check.

The Owls open up the season at Notre Dame and then they have to travel to College Station for a date with the Aggies so they'll be tested right out of the gate.

They only have 5 games at home and don't play UH. Most projections have the Owls going to a bowl game, with some saying they'll play for yet another C-USA Championship.


Rice's 2014 Schedule

08/30 at Notre Dame

09/13 at Texas A&M

09 /20 vs. Old Dominion*

09/27 at Southern Miss*

10/04 vs. Hawai'i

10/11 at Army

10/25 vs. North Texas*

11/01 at FIU*

11/08 vs. UT-San Antonio*

11/15 at Marshall*

11/21 vs. UTEP*

11/29 at Louisiana Tech*

*Conference Games

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