Bailiff might be on a one-week contract.
The 59-year-old is is just four years removed from a 10-win 2013 season that ended with a Conference USA championship. It was part of a three-year stretch that produced 25 victories, by far the highest three-year total in program history. After an eight-win 2014, the Owls have won eight total games the last two seasons — 5-7 in 2015 and 3-9 in 2016.
On Nov. 29, 2016, Rice athletics director Joe Karlgaard issued a statement that said while the season was disappointing, they are confident in Bailiff's plan to turn it around and that he would return in 2017. That came three days after they were demolished by Stanford in the regular-season finale, 41-7.
On Saturday, Exactly nine months after that loss, Rice played Stanford again. And again they were throttled — even worse this time (62-7). And again Karlgaard may have to make a public statement.
The Cardinal scored 52 seconds into the game. They led 21-0 after the first quarter, 38-0 at halftime and didn't allow Rice to score until midway through the fourth quarter. The Owls generated just 241 yards total offense (Stanford had 656) and allowed Bryce Love and Co. to average a staggering eight yards per carry.
"We're a better team than we showed today," Bailiff said after the game, which was played in Sydney, Australia. "When you play against a team like Stanford, or any elite team, you have to be at your very best. And we made some poor decisions early."
David Bailiff won't be fired because of this loss. But the job security questions will continue to linger until his program shows any signs of improvement.