The New Owls - Offense

Rice Signed 17 Fantastic Players Yesterday. The Owls Added 10 Players That Will Line Up On Offense...

With the clear goal of adding speed to their offense the Rice coaching staff hit the road over a year ago looking to add playmakers that could turn 5 yards into 50. The Owls did just that with this class, adding several players who bring dazzling ball skills to the offense, as well as adding a QB that fits the Spread offense perfectly, a big pass catching tight end, and some very physical offensive linemen up front.

2008 Rice Owls Recruits - Offense

Eric Ball, OL, 6-3, 270, 5.10 Katy (High)

Two-year starter for coach Gary Joseph and one of the anchors on the Tigers unbeaten 5A state championship squad. Two-time All-District 18-5A and second-team All-Greater Houston as a senior by the Houston Chronicle... Katy was a combined 29-1 in his two years on the varsity... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300... Bailif on Ball: "He's very explosive off the football and had the ability to move people at the point of attack."

Derek Clark, WR, 6-3, 179, 4.55 Arlington (Bowie)

Lanky wide receiver who was a teammate of fellow Rice signee Roddy Maginot and helped coach Kenny Perry take the Vols to a share of the District 8-5A title and the Region 1 title game of the 5A Division 1 playoffs... finished his senior season with 30 catches for 340 yards and four touchdowns...Three-year letterman in track and also earned two letters as a member of the debate team... Bailiff on Clark: "He runs well for a tall receiver. He is fast and combines that with great leaping ability."

Clay Hebert, OL, 6-3, 290, 5.20 Spring (Klein)

Two-time All District 16-5A second team selection for coach Stan Labay. Led the Bulldogs into the second round of the Division 1 5A playoffs... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300... Also participated in track... A member of the National Honor Society and an Eagle Scout who carries a 4.1 GPA on a 5.0 scale... Bailiff on Hebert: "He will only be 17 when he graduates from high school. He has great balance and flexibility and has the ability to push the pile."

Ryan Lewis, QB, 6-3, 201, 4.61 Baton Rouge, LA (Catholic)

Two-time All Metro selection at quarterback for coach Dale Weiner. Earned District 3-5A MVP honors as a junior and 5-5A accolades as a senior... Two-time honorable mention All State selection... Was 34-5 in his career as a starter... Threw for 3,998 yards and 43 touchdowns in his career... Led Catholic to a pair of appearances in the state semifinals... Also earned all-district honors in baseball as a junior outfielder... Academic All-State selection and member of the National Honor Society who carries a 3.8 GPA... Coaches youth basketball in his spare time... Bailiff on Lewis: "He has great size for a quarterback, but what you see on film is someone who has the total package. He can work himself out of trouble with his feet, his arm, and his mind."

Roddy Maginot, WR, 5-10, 172, 4.44 Arlington (Bowie)

Speedy wide receiver who was an All District 8-5A selection for coach Kenny Perry... teamed with fellow Rice signee Derek Clark to lead the Volunteers to a share of the District 8-5A title and the Region 1 5A Division 1 championship game.... Bowie had never won a playoff game prior to this year... Caught 61 passes for 917 yards and a city-record 12 touchdowns as a senior... Rushed for an additional 118 yards and a pair of touchdowns... Finished his career with 98 catches for 1.536 yards and 19 touchdown catches... Named to the 7 on 7 state championship all tournament team... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300... Carries a 3.8 GPA... Bailiff on Maginot: "He's extremely athletic and has great hands. He has that combination you seek, ability to not only catch the ball, but the speed to make big plays."

Kyle Martens, P/K, 6-6, 190, 4.8 Spearfish, SD (High)

All-around athlete who was a first-team 11A All State selection by the South Dakota High School Coaches Association as a senior for coach Chuck Syverson... Ranked as the #6 punter after attending the Chris Sailer Kicking Camp in Las Vegas... Named his team's most improved player as well as the special teams MVP... Averaged 42.6 as a punter, including a career-best, 82-yard kick... Averaged 82% touchbacks on his kickoffs... Also played wide receiver... Three-year letterman in basketball and track who finished fifth as a junior in the high jump at the state meet... Active in FCA and Young Life in high school... Bailiff on Martens: "He has a live leg and has a great deal of athletic ability at his size."

Stefan Nazar, OL, 6-5, 290, 5.03 Toronto, Ontario (Michael Power)

Offensive lineman who enrolled at Rice for the spring semester... Four-year letterman and Defensive MVP for coach Dan Delmastro... Also named Lineman of the Year... Plays the violin in his spare time and was president of the Robotics Club in high school. Bailiff on Nazar: "He has great natural size and has tremendous upside. He will really benefit from the exposure he has this spring to the program."

Shane Turner, RB, 5-9, 175, 4.40 Houston (Cy Falls)

A member of the Texas Top 100 and rated the 28th best all-purpose back this year... Unanimous All District 17-5A selection for coach David Raffield while leading Cy Falls into the second round of the state playoffs... Turner's Offensive Coordinator at Cy Falls was Todd Thompson, who was a four-year letterman at Rice (1988-91) ... scored 28 touchdowns and averaged eight yards per carry (1,513 yards on 189 carries) as a senior, while catching 26 passes for another 302 yards and a touchdown... Returned a kickoff 100 yards in a nationally televised game vs. Cy Fair on ESPN... Rushed for 1,290 yards and scored 14 times as a junior to lead Cy Falls to the Division 2 5A title game... Finalist for the Touchdown Club of Houston's Offensive Player of the Year... Member of Dave Campbell's Texas Football Top 300 and the Houston Chronicle's Texas Top 100... Bailiff on Turner: "An electric talent who shows a great knack for making people miss him. He has great change-of-direction instincts that make him difficult to defend."

Denzel Wells, WR, 5-10, 175, 4.35 Houston (Cy Falls)

All District 17-5A selection for coach David Raffield while leading Cy Falls into the second round of the state playoffs... Well's Offensive Coordinator at Cy Falls was Todd Thompson, who was a four-year letterman at Rice (1988-91)... Averaged 20.6 yards per catch (43 catches for 927 yards) and caught 10 touchdowns as a senior... Averaged 26.4 yards on 17 kickoff returns, returning two for scores... Bailiff on Wells: "An elusive receiver who combines great speed with great hands."

Luke Willson, TE, 6-5, 240, 4.7 La Salle, Ontario (St. Thomas of Villanova)

Three-year all conference selection for coach Tim Maitre... Caught 29 passes for 638 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior on offense, while racking up 60 tackles, including five sacks, on defense... Named his school's Athlete of the Year as both a junior and a senior... Also played on a summer team, the Essex Ravens, and caught 18 passes for 473 yards and 10 touchdowns... played hockey, baseball and soccer in addition to competing in track in high school... Carries a 4.0 GPA... Bailiff on Willson: "He has great size for a tight end and he catches the ball well. He will be a dual threat as both a receiver and a blocker."

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