Wayne Graham said -"Leon had a solid freshman campaign. He was valuable in centerfield but we're converting him to shortstop. He definitely has shortstop skills, a plus-arm, plus-speed & agility. We think he has a chance to be a great shortstop. Obviously he has a great work ethic and we think he's going to continue to grow as a hitter."
At Rice 2013: NCAA All-Regional; C-USA All-Tournament; All-Silver Glove Series (vs. Houston)... Only Owl freshman to play in every game... Started 63 of the team's 64 games, and all but one of the starts was in centerfield... Made one start at second base in place of all-conference honoree and eventual major league draft pick Christian Stringer (vs. Baylor at Minute Maid Park in the finale of the of the Houston College Classic)... Second on the team in on-base percentage (.420) and steals (9)... Led the squad, and 42nd among the NCAA statistical leaders, in sacrifice bunts (13)... Shared the team lead in walks (44), and was also hit by a pitch more than any other Owl (15 times, the most by a Rice player since 2008)... Tied for fourth on the team in at bats (233), doubles (9) and triples (1)... Finished with a total of 64 hits in 64 games played... Started 47 of the team's first 49 games batting leadoff, then moved to the bottom half of the lineup for the last 15 games and posted dramatic results... Batted .408, maintained a .525 on-base percentage and scored 12 runs over the final 15 games to help the Owls tie for first in the C-USA regular season standings and win both the league tournament and NCAA Regional in Eugene, Oregon... Only other game not to bat leadoff was on March 1 against No. 1 ranked North Carolina where he went 1-for-3 with an RBI and sacrifice bunt... Hit a steady .333 (12-for-36) in all games against ranked opponents and batted .391 in NCAA Tournament games... Collected two or more hits in a game 19 times, including a career-high three hits against Memphis in the C-USA tournament to help send the Owls to the championship final... Knocked a home run and a double in a two-hit game against state foe Stephen F. Austin for a career-best six total bases... Ended the year with a season-long six-game hitting streak, as well as having reached base in 16-consecutive games (one away from career-best 17)... Drew two or more walks in a game 12 times, including a career-high four walks in the series-opener at future conference foe FIU... Finished 30th overall among the NCAA national leaders in walks... Scored twice in a game nine different times... Drove-in a season-best two runs in the series finale win at UAB... Converted on 9-of-15 stolen base attempts... Stole two bases in the final Super Regional game at NC State... Combined solid range with a strong arm in centerfield... Recorded 7-of-9 defensive assists throwing runners out from centerfield, including four that were directly to home plate, one to home on a relay, one at third base and one at second base... Registered an out and two assists playing second base at Minute Maid Park.
High School - A 2012 graduate of Cypress Ranch High School, just west of Houston... Selected in the 25th round of the major league draft by the New York Mets after an outstanding prep career... Helped lead Cy Ranch to the 5A state championship and a 34-8 record as a senior... First team all-state honoree by Texas High School Coaches Association and Texas Sports Writers... First team all-Greater Houston selection by the Houston Chronicle... Named first team Rawlings all-region... Batted .420 with a .566 on-base average, scored 37 runs, stole 20 bases and drove in 22 runs to lead the Mustangs to the 2012 state title... Selected to play in the Texas High School Coaches Association 5A all-star game (south team), as well as the 5A Houston Area Baseball Coaches Association all-star game (north team)... Four-year varsity letterman and three-time all-District 17-5A honoree under head coach John Pope, a 1988-89 Rice baseball letterman... Joined fellow Owl signees Hunter Kopycinski, Kevin McCanna and Beau Rathjen as teammates at the 2011 Area Code Games in Long Beach, Calif.
Personal - Full name: Leon Andre Byrd, Jr.... Born: February 27, 1994, in Houston... Parents: Leon and Lisa Byrd of Cypress, Texas (two sisters)... Father was a baseball letterman at Jackson State... College: Brown