It's Bayou Bucket time in Houston once again. Rice and the University of Houston took a few years off, but they're renewing hostilities Saturday night in a quest tor crosstown bragging rights. For the uninitiated we thought we'd give you a bit of a Bayou Bucket Primer, to catch you up on a bit of the history between the two schools. Here are 5 great moments in Bayou Bucket lore.
In the words of Allen Iverson, we talking about practice. The Owls and Cougars spent most of the middle part of the 20th century not playing each other. Rice, an established member of the Southwest Conference, was in no hurry to acknowledge their cross-town companion. The two wouldn't play an actual game until 1971. In 1941 the two school arranged to practice against each other during spring practice. The Cougars loaded up their buses and drove to Rice for practice. Instead, the Owls arranged for officials, and 11,000 spectators showed up to watch the festivities. The two wouldn't meet again for 30 years.
2008 56-42 Rice
The Cougars traveled to Rice with a chance to win the CUSA Western Division outright, but the Owls had different ideas. The two quarterbacks, Chase Clement for Rice and Case Keenum, put on a show as Clement threw for 381 yards and five scores while Keenum threw for 494. At one point Keenum completed 25 straight, an FBS record. Owl tight end James Casey caught three of Clement's touchdown passes and ran for another. Rice finished the season 10-3 while Houston ended their year 8-5.
1990 24-22 Houston
John Jenkins and Houston entered the 1990 Bayou Bucket ranked 13th in the AP poll and a 29 p point favorite over the Owls. Rice covered, but Roman Anderson's 32-yard field goal with 10 seconds left averted a shocking upset. David Klingler hit Patrick Cooper on a 56-yard touchdown pass with under three minutes to play to draw Houston within one. Rice stopped the Cougar two-point bid, but couldn't run the remainder of the clock, giving Anderson a chance. Houston finished 1990 at 10-1 while the Owl's ended the season 5-6.
1986 14-13 Rice
In legendary coach Bill Yeoman's last game in charge of the Cougars, Rice's Quentis Roper ruined the festivities with a remarkable fourth quarter comeback. Houston held a ten point lead into the final frame and extended that lead to 13-0 when Roper went to work with under six minutes to play. Roper ran for a touchdown and then hit Darrell Goolsby for another, with eighteen seconds remaining, to give the Owls a shocking win.
1995 18-17 Houston
The literal last game of the Southwest Conference pitted the crosstown rivals against each other. The M.O.B. marked the milestone game with a halftime show that included pallbearers and a fat lady singing. The game was as entertaining as Rice led 17-3 heading into the fourth. The Cougars put together a fifteen point final stanza as Chuck Clements threw two touchdown passes, the last coming with 1:19 remaining. Clements converted the two point conversion, but the Owls had one more chance to steal a win, but a 38-yard field goal drifted wide with 12 seconds remaining. Houston finished 1995 with a 2-9 while the Owls ended up 2-8-1.