Whatever's Best For The Team

Michael Patterson chose to attend Rice for all the right reasons. His decision no doubt put a smile on the faces of the Rice coaches - especially one in particular...

Like so many of the recruits in 2008 Rice Recruiting Class, Michael Patterson is an outstanding athlete. His versatility is something that attracted Rice coaches to recruit him. Not that they needed any help finding him - his father is Rice Running Backs Coach Darrell Patterson. But if you think that's why Michael committed to be an Owl you'd be wrong. He could have accepted scholarship offers to West Point or the Air Force Academy as well. Ultimately, he chose Rice because of the excitement surrounding the quickly changing football program, and because he loved the environment on the Rice campus. When asked if his Dad being here had any influence on his decision, Michael admitted that having "Coach" Patterson here was "an added plus."

I talked with Michael this week about his official visit and his future career at Rice.

Michael, you visited Rice recently, where you committed on that same weekend. Tell me why rice was the right place for you?

"I really got along well with the players there and just felt comfortable there. I really like the small class sizes at Rice too. I liked their Sports Management program."

I haven't heard you mention your Dad...

"I removed my Dad from the equation when I started to decide where I would go to college. He supported that. I chose Rice because it was the right place for me. I would have gone there whether my Dad was there or not. Him being a coach there was an added plus though."

You were recruited by David Beaty, who's now gone to Kansas. Did his leaving effect you in any way?

"No not at all."

Who did you room with on your visit?

"I roomed with a big Canadian named Luke Wilson. Luke is cool, we'll be rooming together at Rice. We stay in touch with each other almost every day."

Tell me a little about your visit?

"I got down to Houston on Friday. That night we went to dinner and hung out at Marcus Knox's house. He was cool to hang out with. Saturday we toured the campus and had meetings with position coaches. That night we went bowling. I beat everyone. Sunday I met with Coach Bailiff and decided to commit."

OK, so being the athlete that you are which position coach did you meet with?

"I knew that question was coming. I met with (Rice Cornerbacks) Coach Washington. We went over some techniques and schemes. I'm also getting film of the Rice offense sent to me too though."

Do you have a preference of where you'll play?

"Not really. I'll play wherever the team needs me. Honestly, I like offense. I like the ball in my hands but I also like to hit people."

What are your best assets as a player?

"Overall I think it's my quickness. That's why my shuttle time is pretty good (4.03). I think they are looking at me at cornerback because of that. On offense I think my route running is a strength. I can run routes with double moves pretty well."

What's your feeling about the future of the Rice program?

"I definitely think it's on the way up. People don't realize this will be the first spring in 3 years where the program will have the same coaches in place from last season. That means a lot not having a new offense and defense to learn in the spring."

What are your interests outside of football?

"I really like bowling, which the guys found out when I visited. I like frisbee golf too."

What will you bring to the Rice football program?

"I think I bring a strong competitive edge. I don't care if we're playing Big 12 teams or whoever. Another team's size or speed doesn't matter to me - I'm going to bring my best game regardless."

Coach Patterson you must be proud - I know the rest of us are. Michael and the rest of this group of recruits are surely the foundation of the success that lies ahead...

Welcome to Rice Michael!


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