Game One Start Time Set For 2:30 PM; Watch Live On ESPN3
Start Time vs. Panthers Set For 12:30 PM
Chandler Named C-USA Freshman of the Year; Rice Next Plays FIU Wednesday Afternoon
Owls vs. Owls This Weekend At Reckling Park; Saturday's Game Is 1 PM For TV
Caleb Smith Strikes Out 12 In 6.0 Innings In Second Rice Start
Rice dropped a 4-3 decision to North Carolina State on Saturday
Rice faced North Carolina on March 1 at Minute Maid Park
The Owls finished 2-1 in the 2012 Houston College Classic at Minute Maid Park
Images from his career as an Owl
Named (along with teammate Christian Stringer) a second team 2013 Preseason All-America selection by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA).
Wayne Graham said -- "Everyone realizes Austin's potential is unlimited. He is close to being as good as anybody out there."
Rice -- 2012: All-NCAA Regional team; Shared the team lead and tied for second in Conference USA with 15 starts... Finished second on the team and was fifth in the conference in both ERA (2.69) and opponents' batting average (.211)... Allowed just 6.7 hits per 9.0 innings, the sixth-best mark in C-USA and ranked No. 35 among the NCAA national leaders... Finished seventh in the league with 73 strikeouts, an average of 8.2 per 9.0 innings... Struck out a season-high nine batters in 6.2 innings on the way to a road win at nationally-ranked UCF (game two of that series when the Owls were battling for the C-USA regular season championship in the final weekend of the regular season)... Fanned eight or more batters in a game four times... Worked a season-long 7.2 innings in a start at the C-USA Tournament against Memphis... Averaged 5.1 innings in 15 starts, and pitched into the seventh inning seven times... Sensational second half of the season included a 1.07 ERA, a .184 opponents' batting average and 47 strikeouts in 50.2 innings over his final eight starts... Posted victories over UCF, FIU, Lamar, Marshall, Tulane and UAB... Was far from getting the full support from his teammates in his starts: Rice batted 14 points lower (.284 to .270), had a lower on-base percentage (.382 to .370) and fielded 13 points worse (.978 to .965) in his 15 starts than when other Owls started... Also, his teammates in the bullpen had a staff ERA that was 1.11 runs worse (3.40 to 2.29) in his starts than when other Owls started... Allowed just one home run, on the road at No. 2 Stanford early in the year, and did not allow another one the rest of the season (a streak of 63.0 innings to close out 2012)... Played for Orleans in the Cape Cod League over the summer... 2011: C-USA Freshman of the Year; First Team All-South Central Region (American Baseball Coaches Association); C-USA All-Freshman team; Most Outstanding Player at Houston College Classic; All-Silver Glove Series team for the season-long best-of-five games vs. crosstown rival Houston; Led C-USA and finished 41st in the nation with 102 strikeouts... Posted the most strikeouts by an Owl (and also a Rice freshman) in four years... Tied for third in the conference and led the team in innings (100.0)... Finished fourth in the league and led the team in ERA (2.34)... Second on the team, and tied for fourth in C-USA, in games started (15)... Every appearance was as the starting pitcher... Caught the coaches' attention with solid outings in the fall training program, worked his way into a starting assignment for the opening weekend of the season against nationally-ranked Stanford, and was so impressive that he was soon promoted to the Friday night starting spot... Averaged exactly 6.2 innings per start, and worked into the eighth inning six different times... Fired a brilliant, six-hit complete game shutout to defeat nationally-ranked Texas A&M at Minute Maid Park in the Houston College Classic Tournament... Did not allow any walks and struck out seven against a Texas A&M team that went on to play in the College World Series... Pitched 8.1 shutout frames, scattering five singles and a walk, in a televised road game at Southern Miss that helped Rice claim a share of first place in the C-USA standings... Held all opposing hitters to a composite .251 batting average... Surrendered only two home runs in 100 innings... Averaged just 2.2 walks per 9.0 innings with a strikeouts-to-walks ratio of 4.3-to-1... Struck out a career-high 11 in just 5.2 innings and allowed only one run (which was unearned) in a road game at East Carolina... Fanned 10 in a win over Louisiana Tech... Final won-loss record was 6-5, but a closer look shows he received less offensive and bullpen support from his teammates in his outings, including 1.5 fewer runs per game and a team batting average that was 18 points lower in his games than when another Owl was pitching... Pitched a total of 23.1 innings against nationally-ranked teams, and maintained a 0.77 ERA and .205 opponent's average in those outings... Threw a team-high 42.2 innings against six teams that went on to play in the NCAA Tournament, registering a 1.27 ERA and .200 OBA... Made five appearances as a pinch hitter... Drew a walk in pinch hitting role against Pac 10 foe Southern California... Played in the California Collegiate League (Santa Barbara) over the summer.
High School -- A 2010 graduate of Heritage High School in Colleyville, Tex... Selected in the seventh round of the 2010 major league baseball draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates... Played for Team Texas in the 2010 Heartland Classic in Norman, Okla., and earned all-tournament honors... Second team 5A all-state pitcher... Member of the Texas HS Coaches Association North All-Star team... Earned most valuable player honors in District 5-5A while leading the Panthers to back-to-back regular season titles... Went 8-2 on the mound with a 2.28 ERA and 86 strikeouts in 64 innings... Versatile enough to earn second team all-district accolades as a left-handed hitting outfielder... Batted .354 with a .687 slugging percentage and 32 RBI in the Panthers' 33 games... Selected to play for his home state in the 2009 Area Code Games in Long Beach, Calif.... Three-year letterman and two-year varsity starter for head coach Alan McDougal, the district coach of the year.
Personal -- Full name: Austin Michael Kubitza. Born: November 16, 1991 in Arlington, Tex. Parents: Dan and Terry Kubitza of Colleyville. (two brothers and three sisters). Older brother, Kyle, is an all-Southland Conference player at Texas State University... College: Martel.
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