Jan. 27, 2014
Two preseason polls ranked the Rice baseball team among the national Top 20, the respective organizations announced on Monday, Jan. 27.
A short time after Baseball America listed Rice as No. 15 in its preseason national rankings, PerfectGame.org released its poll with the Owls as the country's No. 17 team. Rice is three-for-three in national Top 20 rankings for the upcoming 2014 campaign, as the Owls were also rated No. 17 in Collegiate Baseball's preseason poll published in December.
The 2014 Owls return six offensive starters in the batting order and ten veteran pitchers who helped lead last year's squad to a 44-20 overall record. Under the direction of head coach Wayne Graham, Rice baseball has made 19-straight trips to the NCAA Tournament and won 18-straight conference championships - including titles that were won in the regular season and/or conference tournament. The Blue & Gray won both the Conference USA regular season and tournament championships in 2013.
Rice opens the 2014 regular season on the road against national powerhouse Stanford with a three-game weekend series in Palo Alto, Calif., on Feb. 14-16. The team held its first official practice of the season on Jan. 25. The full preseason polls for each organization can be viewed at following links: