Rice head football coach David Bailiff announced the signing of 16 high school seniors from the state of Texas to national letters of intent to play football for the Owls beginning with the 2010 season.
Bailiff also announced that record-setting former quarterback Chase Clement and former Detroit Lions All Pro tight end David Sloan have been added to the staff.
"This was a great recruiting year for us." Bailiff said. "We signed 16 young men, all from the state of Texas. Seven were local. It is very important to us that we recruit the Houston area as hard as we can," he stated.
"These seven (local products) are great fits here. The high school coaches in the state of Texas are phenomenal and the coaches around Houston do a great job getting these young men ready to go," Bailiff noted. "Twelve of them are academic all-district, eight of them are academic all-state, and nine are in the National Honor Society. Not only are they great players but they are academic fits at this university. They are total package young men and that's what makes us so excited. Their mission is not only to play football, their mission is to graduate and win championships. It is wonderful when you get that type of young man here," Bailiff stated.
In addition to the seven players from the Houston area, the class features a pair of players from both San Antonio and Austin. Three played on state championship teams, including a pair, Andy Erickson and Trevor Gillette, who were part of three 4A Division I state titles at Austin Lake Travis and completed their careers with a 46-0 record.
Regarding the retooled lineup of his coaching staff, Bailiff said "We are really excited about these additions and then we are going to get back to our fun and gun ways. As I told (new offensive coordinator) David Beaty, my expectation is I want my right arm to get tired from signaling for one. By the fourth quarter I want to have to use my left arm. He told me that he could achieve those expectations so it's exciting to have those guys on the staff and to get David back in Rice Owls blue."
2010 RICE OWLS FOOTBALL RECRUITS
|Gabe Baker||S||6-2||200||San Antonio (MacArthur)|
|Bryce Callahan||DB||5-10||170||Cypress (Cy Woods)|
|Nico Carlson||DT||6-3||270||Katy (Taylor)|
|Drew Carroll||OL||6-4||280||Abilene (High)|
|Jeremy Eddington||RB||6-2||215||Paris (Chisum)|
|Andy Erickson||WR||5-10||175||Austin (Lake Travis)|
|Trevor Gillette||TE||6-3||215||Austin (Lake Travis)|
|Ian Gray||OL||6-8||325||Pearland (High)|
|Mario Hull||WR||6-1||190||Altair (Rice Consolidated)|
|Fred Jackson||DB||5-11||188||Houston (Eisenhower)|
|Dylan Klare||DE||6-3||250||Refugio (High)|
|Cameron Nwosu||LB||5-10||223||Houston (Klein Forest)|
|Zach Patt||ATH||6-2||212||Honey Grove (High)|
|James Radcliffe||LB||6-1||212||Katy (Cinco Ranch)|
|Jordan Taylor||QB/ATH||6-5||200||Denison (High)|
|Justin Warren||OL||6-4||250||San Antonio (Roosevelt)|
Gabe Baker, S 6-2, 200, San Antonio (MacArthur)
All Greater San Antonio by the San Antonio Express News and a unanimous All District 26-5A selection for coach Van Fuschak at San Antonio MacArthur... Had 89 tackles (three for loss) and one interception as a senior... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300... Second team Academic All State selection... Served as an officer in MacArthur's chapter of the National Honor Society.
Bailiff on Baker: "He is a big, physical player who has great range and loves to hit people."
Bryce Callahan, ATH 5-10, 170, Cypress (Cy Woods)
First-team 5A All State by the AP and Named to Dave Campbell's Texas Football's 2009 All Texas High School team... Two-time All District 15-5A selection for coach David Jones, leading the Wildcats into the playoffs in each of their first two seasons of varsity football... Ranked by Dave Campbell's Texas Football as one of the top 20 defensive backs in Texas and a member of its Top 300... Member of the Houston Chronicle's Top 100... Reached the Division I semifinals in 2008 and quarterfinals as a senior... Recorded 136 tackles and 8 interceptions on defense, 167 receiving yards and two touchdowns on offense and averaged 25.8 yards on punt returns and 21.2 yards on kickoff returns as a senior.... Honorable Mention Academic All State.
Bailiff on Callahan: "He can play both corner and safety. He has cornerback speed, but hits like a safety. He also has great return skills. To average over 25 yards on punt returns is amazing."
Nico Carlson, DT 6-3, 270, Katy (Taylor)
Unanimous all District 17-5A selection for coach Flint Risien at Katy Taylor HS... Named to the Houston Chronicle's Houston 100... Recorded 54 tackles, 10 TFL (four sacks), recovered three fumbles and forced two...Three-time NHSCA All America in wrestling and won the 2009 state heavyweight title, winning three of his four matches with pins in less than two minutes.... Looking to become the first repeat Texas state champ at the 285-pound class... Moved to Katy from Virginia Beach, Virginia prior to his junior year... Born in the Azores
Bailiff on Carlson: "His upside is tremendous. When you put on his film, you see him get better and better each game. He brings tremendous passion to the field."
Drew Carroll, OL 6-4, 280, Abilene (High)
First-team 5A All State by the Associated Press and a two-time all District 3-5A selection for coach Steve Warren as the Eagles won the state 5A Division II championship... Team captain... Abilene finished the year ranked second in the nation by ESPN.com and MaxPreps.com... Also lettered in power lifting... Second-team Academic All State and a member of the National Honor Society.
Bailiff on Carroll: "When you watch his film the thing that stands out every time is the amazing way that he finishes plays. He is always working, looking to finish the block."
Jeremy Eddington, RB 6-2, 215, Paris (Chisum)
MVP of District 12-2A as well as MVP of the All Red River Valley football team as a senior quarterback for coach Don Hasley... Ran for 1,650 yards and scored 22 touchdowns as a senior... Also earned All Red River Valley honors as a defensive end... All district selection in basketball as a junior as well as a regional qualifier in the long jump, triple jump and as a member of the Mustangs' 800 meter relay.... Served as a class officer as both a freshman and sophomore and was elected Homecoming King as a senior.
Bailiff on Eddington: "He is a great athlete who has tremendous explosiveness. And when you watch his defensive tape, it was just as impressive as his offensive highlight tape.."
Andy Erickson, WR 5-10, 175, Austin (Lake Travis)
Named to Dave Cambell's Texas Football's 2009 All Texas High School team... Compiled 2,730 all purpose yards and scored 41 touchdowns as a senior for coach Chad Morris and played on three consecutive state 4A Division I champions. Lake Travis was 46-0 in his three seasons and finished 2009 ranked second in the nation by Rivals.com... 4A All State Honorable Mention by the Associated Press... Central Texas Player of the Year... Compiled ....Finished his career with 4,912 all purpose yards in three seasons.... Academic All District.
Bailiff on Erickson: "He is a dynamic, explosive force who keeps you on the edge of your seat every time he touches the ball. He knows how to play in big games."
Trevor Gillette, TE 6-3, 215, Austin (Lake Travis)
4A All State Honorable Mention as a defensive lineman by the Associated Press while playing for coach Chad Morris... Played on three consecutive state 4A Division I champions, and served as a team captain as a senior... Lake Travis was 46-0 in his three seasons and finished 2009 ranked second in the nation by Rivals.com... One of two Cavaliers to sign with the Owls (Andy Erickson)... Named the defensive MVP in the state title game... Also lettered in basketball...Academic All District 25-4A... Served as a leader in DECA and was co-leader of Lake Travis' Teen Impact program, which promotes healthy lifestyles and relationships to teens.
Bailiff on Gillette: "He is very athletic and brings good speed to the tight end position with allows him to take the top off of coverage."
Ian Gray, OL 6-8, 325, Pearland (High)
Largest member of the 2010 recruiting class... Three-year letterman and two-time All District 22-5A for coach Tony Heath at Pearland... Named to the Houston Chronicle's Houston 100... Also played basketball and competed in track at Pearland... Academic All District... Father (Ian Gray) played football at Notre Dame, while an uncle (Carl Gray) played at Penn State.
Bailiff on Gray: "He has great feet for such a big man and continues to improve his athleticism by playing basketball this winter. It's exciting to see that he's averaging 15 rebounds and 11 points."
Mario Hull, WR 6-1, 190, Altair (Rice Consolidated)
First-team 2A All State by the Associated Press and District 26-2A MVP as a senior for coach Brad Dumont at Rice Consolidated High School... Finished his senior year with 44 catches for 1, 077 yards and 11 touchdowns...Returned two kickoffs and one punt for a touchdown...Three-time all-district performer... Teamed as a sophomore with Owls transfer QB Taylor Cook in 2007 to lead the Raiders to the 2A state semifinals, and returned there again as a junior.... Rice Consolidated was 38-5 over his three seasons... All-district selection in basketball in 2008 and also competed in baseball, track and golf... Active in FCA.
Bailiff on Hull: "His yards after the catch is what really stands out on film. His highlight tape is six minutes of touchdowns coming on plays he creates."
Fred Jackson, DB 5-11, 188, Houston (Eisenhower)
All District 19-5A for coach Ray Evans at Eisenhower... Second on the team in tackles and third in the district in interceptions... Eagles reached the third round of the state playoffs in both his junior and senior seasons and posted a 28-8 record over that stretch... Named team captain... Ranked by Rivals.com as the 53rd best safety... Won National Junior Olympic titles in the 400 meters and as a member of sprint medley relays... Ranked in the top 5% of his class... Second team Academic All State... Member of the National Honor Society, Technology Student Association, National Junior Black Engineering Society and the student council.
Bailiff on Jackson: "He has great speed and is very athletic, but what you notice right away is that people go backwards when he makes a tackle."
Dylan Klare, DE 6-3, 250, Refugio (High)
Four-time All District 30-2A selection for coach Jason Herring at Refugio...Two-time honorable mention all state honoree... Ranked by Dave Campbell's Texas Football as one of the top 20 defensive linemen in Texas and a member of its Top 300... District MVP as a junior, defensive MVP as a senior... Three-year team captain... Bobcats were 51-5 in his career, reaching the regional finals all four years, the quarterfinals twice and the state semifinals as a senior... State power lifting champion in 2009... First-team Academic All State... Member of the National Honor Society and class Valedictorian... Member of Refugio's computer science team that finished second at the state competition.
Bailiff on Klare: "He played middle linebacker this year and has run the 100 meters in 11.1 seconds. He has tremendous range."
Cameron Nwosu, LB 5-10, 223, Houston (Klein Forest)
2nd team 5A All State by the Associated Press under coach Kenny Hammock at Klein Forest High School... Second-team team All Greater Houston by the Houston Chronicle... Named to the Houston Chronicle's Houston 100... Defensive Player of the Year in District 13-5A as well as team MVP as a senior and a three-time, all-district selection... Finished with 113 tackles as a senior and 306 in his three seasons... Also competed in track and won district titles in the shot put as a sophomore and junior... Member of the National Honor Society and the student council and served as an officer in both FCA and DECA.
Bailiff on Nwosu: "He combines great strength and quickness in a powerful package. He broke three helmets last year making tackles."
Zach Patt, ATH 6-2, 212, Honey Grove (High)
Four-time All District 11-2A selection for coach James Fuller at Honey Grove...Led the Warriors in rushing for three consecutive seasons... Team reached the area championship in both his freshman and sophomore seasons... Also played basketball and earned All Red River Valley honorable mention as a sophomore... Academic All District... Member of the Beta Club.
Bailiff on Patt: "He played running back and defensive end in high school and when you see his combination of athleticism and explosiveness, you know he could play on either side of the ball for us."
James Radcliffe, LB 6-1, 212, Katy (Cinco Ranch)
5A All State Honorable Mention by the Associated Press for coach Don Clayton at Cinco Ranch... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300... Named to the Houston Chronicle's All Greater Houston team... Named to the Houston Chronicle's Houston 100... Two-time All District 17-5A selection and the district defensive MVP as a junior... Team captain as Cinco Ranch advanced to the 5A Division I semifinals... Ranks as the Cougars' career (334) and single-season (142) tackle leader... Also holds the Cinco Ranch season sack record (6)... Member of the National Honor Society... Three time All District Academic.
Bailiff on Radcliffe: "He plays with great football instinct and runs very well. He has great tackling skills."
Jordan Taylor, QB/ATH 6-5, 200, Denison (High)
4A Region II Player of the Year as a quarterback for coach Cody White at Denison High... Earned all state honors from Rivals.com while leading Denison to the 4A Division II semifinals... Ranked by Dave Campbell's Texas Football as one of the top 20 athletes in Texas and a member of its Top 300... Threw for 3,766 yards and 40 TDs and ran for 2,500 yards and 39 touchdowns in his career... Earned all district and honorable mention all state honors as a wide receiver as a sophomore before moving to quarterback as a junior... Caught 29 passes for 546 yards and 11 touchdowns as a sophomore... Also plays baseball and earned all district honors as an outfielder as a junior... Will run track this spring... Academic All State selection.
Bailiff on Taylor: "He is an intriguing prospect who has shown the ability to play either quarterback or wide receiver."
Justin Warren, OL 6-4, 250, San Antonio (Roosevelt)
All Greater San Antonio by the San Antonio Express News and all District 26-5A selection for coach Neal La Hue at Roosevelt High School... Two-year starter... Did not allow a sack in two years... Graded at better than 90% of his games as a junior and 94% or better in every game as a senior... A member of the National Honor Society and a Second team Academic All State selection.
Bailiff on Warren: "He is as athletic an offensive lineman as you will see. When he gets on you, you will not shake him."