Rice's Bailff gets 3-year extension

Rice's Bailff gets 3-year extension

Rice's David Bailiff has received a three-year extension. (AP)

Rice’s David Bailiff has received a three-year extension. (AP)

[dropcap]R[/dropcap]ice has given head coach David Bailiff a three-year contract extension that will keep him with the Owls through the 2016 season.

The Owls won six of their final seven games in 2012, including a 33-14 win over Air Force in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl, to finish 7-6.

“David Bailiff has worked tirelessly to build our football program and establish a solid foundation for future achievements on the field and in the classroom,” athletics director Rick Greenspan said in a statement. “His recruiting efforts have been highly productive due to his great familiarity with the State of Texas high school coaches and his candor and integrity.

“We were pleased with the manner in which the staff led our team to a successful bowl victory this winter and seek even higher levels of accomplishment. We are working strategically to enhance facilities, budgets, schedules and other factors to assist his efforts.”

Bailiff, who had one year remaining on his existing contract, took over as Rice’s head coach in 2007. In 2008, he led the Owls’ to a victory over Western Michigan in the Texas Bowl, the school’s first postseason win in 54 years.

However, Baliff’s time as head coach hasn’t been without its share of struggles. His overall record is 34-44, and the Owls have had losing seasons in four of his six years as head coach. The Owls finally snapped a 14-game conference road losing streak in November.

The school’s academic standards and outdated facilities make recruiting difficult, but Bailff believes the foundation for success has been laid.

“I know that was a hard three years there,” Bailiff told the Houston Chronicle. “But when you believe in what you are doing and you know every year you are recruiting better – that has to be your goal to recruit better than the year before.

“At Rice you have to develop them and wait on them to mature. We did it the right way and doing it the right way requires some time.”

With 19 returning starters, great strides made in improving the defense last season and a more favorable schedule, the Owls are among the favorites in the C-USA West division in 2013.

“It’s exciting to know what we’re building we are going to be able to move forward,” Bailiff said. “I mean this, the best is yet to come.”

Financial terms of the deal were immediately not known as Rice is a private school. Bailiff’s base salary was reportedly $608,000 last season.

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