1. RICE WIN TOTAL PREDICTION: WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN
The Owls were hit hard by transfers and a few key graduates, but there’s a good young base to build around.
It might just take a year or so for the payoff to come.
The receiving corps is going to be a massive plus thanks to Aaron Cephus and Austin Trammell. and the young linebacking corps and all the underclassmen who took their lumps on defense now should be ready for primetime, but there’s a LOT of work to do.
The running game has to figure out a groove – that’s supposed to be head coach Mike Bloomgren’s forte after coming over from Stanford – and the quarterback play has to be a lot steadier.
More than anything else, Rice can’t get destroyed on the lines again. The defensive front is going to need a whole lot of seasoning, and the offensive line has to keep defenses out of the backfield once in a while.
Set The Regular Season Win Total At … 2
There’s going to be a win in the mix somewhere, but the Owls are almost certainly going to be the underdog in at least ten games – there’s no FCS team on the slate this year – and the two 50/50 games against UTSA and UTEP are on the road.
It’s not all doom and gloom, though. Bloomgren really is building up the program, and it really is going to take some time. Improving on the two wins from last year would be a nice start.