Nov. 17, 2012
Rice head football coach David Bailiff has been selected as the Conference USA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Coaches Choice Award winner for 2011-12. He will be presented with the award during the Rice women's basketball game with Baylor on November 27.
The SAAC Coaches Choice Award recognizes a coach that is committed to fostering student-athlete development and welfare through a positive athletic and academic atmosphere. Each C-USA institution selects a nominee and then voting is done by the conference SAAC representatives during its annual in-person meeting.
Completing his sixth year leading the Owls' football program, Bailiff has led Rice to its first bowl victory in over 50 years in addition to the second 10-win season in school history. He has seen four players drafted by the NFL in the last four years after Rice had seen only four players taken in the previous 19 seasons.
In the classroom, his team has averaged nearly 40 members of the C-USA Commissioner's Honor Roll each year. The Owls have also produced a pair of Academic All-Americans (James Casey and Travis Bradshaw) during his tenure.
In the community, the Rice football team was honored by the Texas Association of Partners in Education with their TAPE's Crystal Award and for the program the Owls conducted in the fall of 2007 with the students at Arizona Fleming Elementary School in Houston. His players were also active in Big Brothers and Rice Athletics was honored in 2012 as one of the Houston chapter's Community Partner of the Year. Other honorees are Faith Based Partner of the Year - Kids Hope USA; Board Member of the Year - Mary Murray; and Corporate Partner of the Year - JP Chase Morgan.
The Owls have also been active in supporting the military through a series of initiatives, including the packaging of parcels for deployed troops. Bailiff accepted an invitation to join with four other college football coaches on a goodwill tour to visit military personnel stationed in Afghanistan and again honored our troops in 2011 by participating as a driver the "Crossing of America" tour.
One day after meeting SMU in their final home game of the 2012 season, the Owls will host their seventh annual Challenger game at Rice Stadium as part of the local Challenger Football program for local special needs youths.
Bailiff is the second Rice coach to receive the Conference USA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Coaches Choice Award. Women's Track and Cross Country coach Jim Bevan was honored for the 2006-07 season.