Oct. 18, 2013
The Rice Owls head back on the road for the third consecutive week looking for their fourth consecutive victory when they travel outside of Conference USA to face the New Mexico State Aggies on Saturday night in Las Cruces, New Mexico. It will be the first meeting in football between the two schools.
Rice fans will have three potential options available to watch the action. Comcast Sports Net Houston is picking up the Aggievision feed and will make it available on Comcast Sports Plus (check with your local provider. ESPN3 is also picking up the feed as well. The game is also available from New Mexico State as a pay-per-view webcast. As always, Rice's audio feed will be available here.
Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. (central) for the first-ever meeting between the two schools in football. It will mark Rice's second game in the Land of Enchantment.
The Owls met the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque on October 18, 1997 and used a 21-point explosion in the game's first 10 minutes to set the stage for a 35-23 win. Michael Perry ran for 134 yards on 26 carries and a pair of touchdowns. Rice rolled up 384 yards on the ground while not completing its only pass of the night.
The Lobos chose to attack through the air, throwing for 317 yards, but a pair of first quarter interceptions set up two of the Owls three quick touchdowns. The win by Rice that night snapped New Mexico's most successful start to a season in school history. The Lobos were 6-0 for the first time in school history heading into that game. This Saturday, the 2013 Owls will bring the same record as the 1997 squad (4-2), but will be facing a New Mexico State squad looking for its first victory of the year.
The Owls have opened C-USA play with three consecutive wins to grab a share of the C-USA Western Division lead with Tulane and are one of three conference schools who are unbeaten near the midpoint of league action. They are looking to even their non-conference record at 2-2 for the second consecutive year on a weekend when only four other conference foes are in action.
Rice's 4-2 start is the school's best since 2001 when the Owls opened the year 6-1. That squad went on to finish 8-4, but because the WAC only had two guaranteed bowl berths, Rice did not earn a postseason assignment.
The 2013 Owls are looking to move one step closer to earning consecutive bowl berths for only the second time in school history. Rice actually played in a pair of bowls in the calendar year of 1961. They opened the year by facing Ole Miss in the 1961 Sugar Bowl, then concluded the 1961 season by hosting Kansas in the Bluebonnet Bowl at Rice Stadium.