Cougars Begin Final Week Of Preparing For Season-Opener Against Rice

Aug. 31, 2004

Houston, Texas- - The University of Houston football team begins its final week of preseason practice before the Cougars open their 2004 schedule against inner-city rival, Rice University, on Sunday, September 5.

"I feel confident where we are right now," Houston head coach Art Briles said. "The players came in with a workman-like attitude and we have spent the last 28 days preparing. Now, we are ready to play a game."

Houston will be looking to win its third straight season-opener against the Owls. Last year, Houston beat Rice, 48-14, in Briles' first game as a collegiate head coach. The Cougars opened the 2002 season with a 24-10 victory over the Owls at Rice Stadium.

"We were very fortunate to have some things go our way last year," Briles said. "When they did, everything we tried seem to fall into place. I know that Rice is going to fight as hard as they can not to let that happen again.

"I have a lot of respect for Coach Hatfield and their players. I expect we will be in for quite a fight Sunday."

Sunday's game will be Houston's first appearance in Reliant Stadium. The Cougars also play Miami there on September 23.



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