Head coach Wayne Graham #37 of the Rice Owls looks off into the sky during their 7-4 loss to the North Carolina Tar Heels in Game 13 of the NCAA College World Series at Rosenblatt Stadium on June 21, 2007 in Omaha, Nebraska. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

BEVO BEAT Baseball

Golden: How about Rice’s legendary Wayne Graham joining David Pierce’s coaching staff?

Posted June 6th, 2018

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In this week’s Golden’s Nuggets, Ced touches on a Bevo-related item. Here is his take:

On legendary Rice baseball coach Wayne Graham:

We ran into legendary Rice coach Wayne Graham in the elevator Sunday night following Texas’ NCAA regional win over Indiana at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. Graham attended the regional as a guest of both UT coach David Pierce — his former assistant — and UT athletic director Chris Del Conte.

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“I’m wearing this Longhorn shirt and I haven’t worn this color in a while,” said Graham, who played at Texas in 1956 and 1957. “They gave it to me, so I was like, ‘Why not?’”

Graham, 82, led Rice to 23 NCAA postseasons in his 27 seasons and a national championship in 2003, eliminating defending national champion Texas along the way. But he was told by Rice AD Joe Karlgaard that his contract wouldn’t be renewed after this season.

Rice went 26-31 and didn’t qualify for the NCAAs. If he doesn’t coach again, Graham’s career record will go down as 1,173-528.

Kirk Bohls asked him Sunday night if he was going to join Pierce’s staff. “No,” Graham smiled, “they have enough coaches.”

Pierce worked for Graham in 1991 and again from 2003-2011, mostly as a pitching coach on staffs that included included Wade Townsend, Joe Savery, Jeff Niemann, David Aardsma and Philip Humber. All but Townsend — my favorite Dripping Springs athlete — went on to play in the majors. Before that, he coached MLB greats Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte at San Jacinto College.

For the rest of Cedric’s Nuggets, including his thoughts on Vince Young being on the College Football Hall of Fame ballot and the NBA Finals, click here.

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