Rice will make its 14th bowl appearance in school history when the Owls face Texas State in the SERVPRO First Responder Bowl set for Dec. 26 at Gerald J. Ford Stadium in Dallas.
The game will kick off at 4:30 p.m. Central and broadcast nationally on ESPN.
“Our goal as a team this year was to earn the right to go to a bowl game and win, and we knew what that meant,” Rice head football coach Mike Bloomgren said. “The mission is not complete, but we have earned the opportunity to be there, and we’re fired up about that.”
Bloomgren and his assistants are now the third Rice coaching staff in 110 years of Owls football to lead the team to two consecutive bowl games.
“That’s a big deal, but we also want to win it,” he said. “And there’s no better way to set the tone for next season than to send the seniors out the right way and win this game.
“It means everything to take another step, and you get tangible evidence of a job well done. You win this game, you get a bowl ring, and it’s just like a trophy in your office. They’re great to have, but they really mean you’re progressing.”
Rice finished the regular season at 6-6 overall and 4-4 in American Conference play. Texas State went 7-5 this year, including 4-4 in the Sun Belt Conference. The Dec. 26 matchup will be the fifth meeting between the schools and the first since 1987. The teams split the first four meetings, which were all held at Rice Stadium.
With the game being in close proximity to both fanbases, Bloomgren said having a great turnout of Rice fans in Dallas could make a notable difference.
“We understand how excited the Texas State fan base is going to be and that they’re going to be there, so we need our fans to be there in force,” he said. “We need them to match them in numbers and match them with their voice. We need them to cheer loud and often.”
Fans can visit the Rice Bowl Central page for the latest information on tickets, special fan packages and information on 2024 Rice football season tickets. Information on additional events around the bowl will be released in the coming days.
For more Rice sports news, visit Riceowls.com.