Annual Athletics Awards Dinner
2017 Night of the Owl
Melange Events to provide concessions and catering services at Rice Athletics events
Second sweep in first three weeks of awards
`Super 11′ sports information departments in 2014 season
He assumed his duties on August 23, 2006 when he became the third person to hold the Sports Information Director title at Rice, following Bill Whitmore (1950-84) and Bill Cousins (1984-2006). Pool guides athletic communications and publicity efforts for the Owls while serving as the primary contact for football as well as men's and women's tennis.
Pool and his staff were honored in 2015 by the Football Writers’ Association of America as one of their Super 11 Sports Information staffs.
In his time at Rice, he has coordinated the Owls efforts to move their media information away from printed materials as well as developing a broader overall reach through sport-specific Facebook and Twitter initiatives with a heavy emphasis on video.
In 2011, he oversaw the redesign and relaunch of Riceowls.com while also writing and co-producing a five-part documentary on the 100th season of Rice Football.
In 2010, he assumed administrative responsibility of the Owls' video productions and oversaw the creative aspects of Owls Insider, a half-hour show which debuted on Fox Sports Houston and has also appeared on Comcast Sports Houston and Root Sports Sothwest. That same year he was responsible for the expansion of OwlVision's baseball webcast production as well as the first-ever webcast of the C-USA outdoor track and field championships in 2011.
In 2006, his publicity efforts enabled a previously unknown sophomore wide receiver, Jarett Dillard, to become one of three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award finalist. In 2008 Dillard became Rice's first Football Writers All American in 50 years.
Pool's staff was honored by the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) as one of departments deemed the best in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision for the 2014 season as part of their annual "Super 11" rankings.
He served as Media Coordinator for the 2010 and 2015 NCAA Men's South Basketball Regionals in Houston. He served as the Local Media Coordinator for the 2011 Men's Final Four and will reprise that role again in the spring of 2016.
Pool, 57, joined the Owls after spending the previous four years running his own public relations company, Laysan Communications, which specialized in proactive sports-related public and media relations. His primary clients included the Rotary Lombardi Award, which honors the top linemen in college football, and the Roger Clemens Award, which was presented to the top pitcher in college baseball. Laysan also provided media services to the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee, the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority and USA Football.
He first came to Houston in the fall of 1985 when he joined the Houston Astros as the assistant director of public relations. He remained with the Astros through the spring of 1992 when he was selected to create the media relations department of the expansion Florida Marlins. He returned to the Astros in 1998 before entering private business in 1999.
Pool is a 1980 graduate of the University of Nebraska where he played freshman football (1977). He joined the Huskers' SID department as a student assistant and was named Publications Coordinator/Sports Information Assistant upon graduation.
During his time at Nebraska, he was part of publicity efforts that garnered a Heisman Trophy, three Outland, two Rotary Lombardi Award winners and 10 consensus All-America selections in football. He also headed up publicity efforts for the Huskers' gymnastics and swimming programs, and served as media coordinator for three NCAA men's gymnastics and one NCAA women's swimming and diving championship.
In 1984, he was selected to join the media staff for the Olympic Games in Los Angeles and also has worked on media staffs for the 1989 NBA All Star Game at the Houston Astrodome, three Major League Baseball All Star Games (1986, 1991, 1992), one World Series (1995) and was part of the statistical crew for Super Bowl XXXVII at Reliant Stadium in Houston.
He is a member of the Football Writers' Association of American and the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA. He is a past president of Pearland Little League and has served on the Advisory Council of the Rotary Lombardi Award.
Pool and wife Laura reside in Pearland. They have four children: Kevin (26, who received his degree from Rice in 2011 while also lettering in football, currently coaches football and teaches at Ft. Bend Austin HS), Cameron (22, who is serving his country as a Corporal in the Marines) Kelli (21, who attends Lamar University where she is a student athletic trainer) and Courtney (18, who is completing her senior year at Pearland HS).