Aug. 14, 2012
HOUSTON- Rice hosts Brittney Griner and the defending National Champion Baylor Lady Bears as one of sixteen home games at Tudor Fieldhouse this season. The Owls also travel to 2010-11 National Champion Texas A&M and to Knoxville for its first meeting with eight-time National Champion Tennessee.
"Our non-conference schedule is certainly one of the most challenging in school history," said Rice Head Coach Greg Williams. "I thought about firing my scheduling coach, but my wife wants me to keep my job," joked Williams. "We wanted to take our senior, Jessica Goswitz back to her hometown of Knoxville to play in front of her family and friends," added Williams.
"Bringing Brittney Griner back to her hometown will be special for her, as well as allowing our fans a chance to see perhaps the greatest female player in women's basketball history play in person," said Williams. "We hope to have the first sellout for a women's game in Rice history. Conference USA is going to be extremely competitive with at least 9 or 10 teams capable of winning the conference. Our competitive non-conference schedule should prepare us well for the C-USA season."
The Lady Bears, who went 40-0 in 2011-12 and won the NCAA Championship, come to Tudor Fieldhouse on November 27th. This marks the first time that Rice has hosted the defending National Champion in women's basketball since 2001, when Notre Dame came to Autry Court and fell to the Owls 72-61. This is the fourth time that the defending National Champion in women's basketball comes to Rice, including visits by Texas Tech in 1993-94 and Texas in 1986-87.
Baylor is led by senior Brittney Griner, who returns to her hometown of Houston to play the Owls. Griner was named National Player of the Year by the AP, USBWA and ESPN, along with receiving the ESPY for Female Athlete of the Year.
Rice makes its first visit to Tennessee on November 15th, as it meets the Lady Vols for the first time in program history. Tennessee reached the Elite 8 last season, and has won eight National Championships, most recently in 2007-08.
Rice senior Jessica Goswitz, a Knoxville, Tenn. native, has an opportunity to play in front of her friends and family back home when the Owls travel to Tennessee.
The Owls face an old Southwest Conference rival and 2010-11 National Champion Texas A&M on January 1st in College Station. In total, the Owls play three of the last four institutions to win National Championships in women's basketball.
In total, Rice plays seven teams that reached the NCAA Tournament in 2012, and hosts four of those teams at Tudor Fieldhouse.
Rice hosts a seven-game homestand from Nov. 27 to Dec. 30, starting with the matchup with Baylor. Future C-USA rival UTSA visits Tudor Fieldhouse on Dec. 20 during that homestand.
Rice plays 16 C-USA games, playing home-and-homes with Houston, Tulane, Tulsa, SMU and UTEP. The Owls host Marshall, UAB and UCF, while they travel to East Carolina, Memphis and Southern Miss.
The Owls last C-USA matchup with the Houston Cougars is in Hofheinz Pavilion on March 3. The season concludes with SMU coming to Tudor Fieldhouse for Senior Night on March 7.
The 2013 C-USA tournament is in Tulsa, Okla., and runs from March 13-16.
10/9 - Prairie View A&M - 7 p.m.
11/15 - at Tennessee - 6 p.m.
11/17 - at Tennessee Tech - TBA
11/20 - at Texas State - 7 p.m.
11/24 - at UALR - TBA
11/27 - Baylor - 7 p.m.
11/28 - Chicago St. - 7 p.m.
12/1 - McNeese St. - 1 p.m.
12/15 - Stephen F. Austin - 7 p.m.
12/20 - UTSA - 7 p.m.
12/28 - UTPA - 7 p.m.
12/30 - Lamar - 2 p.m.
1/1 - at Texas A&M - TBA
1/10 - at East Carolina - 6 p.m.
1/13 - Tulsa - 2 p.m.
1/20 - at SMU - 2 p.m.
1/24 - UTEP - 7 p.m.
1/27 - at Southern Miss - 2 p.m.
1/31 - at Memphis - 7 p.m.
2/3 - UAB - 2 p.m.
2/10 - Houston - 2 p.m.
2/14 - at Tulane - 7 p.m.
2/17 - at Tulsa - 2 p.m.
2/21 - UCF - 7 p.m.
2/24 - Marshall - 2 p.m.
2/28 - at UTEP - 7 p.m.
3/3 - at Houston - 2 p.m.
3/7 - SMU - 7 p.m.
ALL TIMES CENTRAL - DATES AND TIMES SUBJECT TO CHANGE