Sometimes you stumble upon nuggets when you least expect it. In the midst of researching another item in the R Association scrapbooks, a familiar name jumped out of a recruiting update from back in 1972.
It seems that current Astros bullpen coach Jamie Quirk was once a prime recruiting target of Bill Peterson during his brief tenure as the Owls head football coach. Quirk possessed the classic build (6-4, 190) of a pro quarterback and was a top prospect at St. Paul High School in Santa Fe, California. Quirk's interest in Rice was piqued because of Peterson's offensive reputation, having brought the pro style offense to the college game.
Quirk visited Rice with his parents and when prompted for a recollection of the visit, the beauty of the Rice campus remained a strong memory. He said his parents were pretty excited about the academic reputation of Rice. At that time, there was an additional step in the recruiting process, as prospects first signed conference letters of intent. Quirk signed a Southwest Conference Letter of Intent to attend Rice, but when the final decision day rolled around and Peterson having left Rice to take over the Houston Oilers, Quirk turned his attentions northward and signed a National Letter of Intent to attend Notre Dame.
Later that spring, all talk of a football career became moot when the Kansas City Royals made him the 18th overall selection in the June, 1972 draft and he went on to play 18 years in the majors, including a pair of World Series (Kansas City 1985, Oakland 1990).
Quirk finally made his way to Houston in the fall of 2009 when he joined Brad Mills coaching staff as the bullpen coach.