Rice Represented Well in Bayou Bowl

Three of Rice's 2008 signees had a "tune up" game last Saturday night in the Bayou Bowl as each prepared to begin classes at Rice this week. They shared some thoughts on their futures as Owls after the game...

Last Saturday night in Baytown players from Texas took on a spirited bunch of Cajun footballers in the Bayou Bowl held at Stallworth Stadium. Texas came out on top 24-14 in a hard fought contest that included at least one bench clearing melee. Owl Digest caught up with 2 future Rice Owls after the contest. (We ran a feature on Shane Turner Monday.)

John Gioffre

6-1 310 - Defensive Tackle

After winning a State Heavyweight Championship in wrestling John has been working hard in preparation for life as a Defensive Tackle at Rice. He spoke to Scout.com's Ahmard Vital after Saturday night's win by the Texas All-Star squad.

Owl Digest: How does it feel after winning tonight's game?

"They (Louisiana All-Stars) were on a 3 year winning streak so it means a lot to bring a win home for Texas. I thought it was a well played game on both sides. We've only been together for a week but we built up a lot of comraderie. Every one was on point tonight."

OD:You're on your way to Rice - how much are you looking forward to that?"

"Well actually a lot. I specifically looked forward to this game because it's about as close to a college game as I could get and I knew it would help get me prepared for Rice. I go (to Rice) next Monday so this is getting ready for college and making a name for myself."

Denzel Wells

5-10 175 Wide Receiver

OD:How's the feeling right now after the win tonight?

"The feeling is great. I'm just high on life, I'm on Cloud 9."

OD:How'd you feel about your game tonight, you had a couple of grabs and moved the chains...?

"Basically I had to come out and represent for not only Cypress Falls but I'm also representing for Rice University showing them that I can come out and compete against All-Stars from Louisiana. I snagged a few catches tonight so hopefully I won't be redshirted next year."

OD:What was it about Rice that made you sign with them in the end?"

"First and foremost the campus is just beautiful. But the big, big thing was I wanted to go somewhere where I could make a big difference in the program. Coach (David) Raffield (Cy-Falls Head Coach) told me I could be a small fish in a big pond or a big fish in a small pond. I chose to be a big fish at Rice. The most important thing is it's Rice - it's an Ivy League education. The valedictorians at some schools can't get in there and I'm fortunate enough, and blessed enough, to get the opportunity to get in and get that kind of education."

OD:When do you report to Rice and what do you have to say the Owl fans?

"I report on the 15th (June). Keep the support up, look out for Shane Turner, Denzel Wells, and John Gioffre; and the rest of the Class of '08 signees. Just support us and hopefully we can get some more wins under the belt this year and help put more fans in the stands."


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