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No 20 The Washington State Cougars increased their lead over the Houston Cougars by 8 points to 9 points in Friday night's game at NRG Stadium. The Cougar (8-1) has not suffered a home loss this season and won five games in a row in Houston, winning five of the past seven overall. It followed six consecutive wins at home last season, and the Cougs have lost a season for the first time since the start of this century.

The Cougars began playing football in 1946 and were a member of the prestigious Southwest Conference until it was disbanded 20 years later. Houston's traditional rival is Rice, with whom it shares a conference, and the Houston rivalry - Rice has also experienced rivals like Texas A & M, Oklahoma State, Florida State and Texas Tech. After 18 seasons in the C - USA in 2012, the Cougars joined the American Athletics Conference in 2013.

They joined a list that included Central Florida, Memphis, BYU and Cincinnati to make a formal pitch to the Big 12, which has said it is considering expansion.

A year later, Fertitta still has a big-12 decision to make. "It's the biggest wall ever built on the railroad," he said. Privately, though, there is no amount of money Herman would keep on Cullen Boulevard if Texas or LSU called. I think Guidry will be a star in Houston, he plays with a speed that not many have. Brooks is a playmaker who knows how to get football out of his team, something Houston hasn't done well in years.

When Houston's athletic director Chris Pezman first publicly raised the idea of a Final Four in PaperCity in March, he wasn't crazy. Sampson, 65, who has coached at traditional strength schools like Oklahoma and Indiana, would do so at the University of Houston for the first time in his career.

At the end of the day it was a nice surprise for the Coogs, but who knows what he can do when he moves to Houston. Herman drove to central Texas to land in Houston and met with UT officials to find the dream job he had long longed for.

Applewhite, a former Longhorns quarterback, beat out a group of finalists that included Texas A & M head coach Tom Herman, Texas Tech coach Jim McElwain and Texas national coach Bill O'Brien. Bender settled with the Cougars and was assigned the team's nickname.

The Cougars were a hard-hit program at the start of the season, with eight games interrupted by a concussion, but they remained competitive. They beat OU and climbed into the top five before playoff dreams came to an end and depth and injuries took their toll. Holgorsen expressed a desire to make his squad older, saying it puts them at a disadvantage to play in a championship. The Cougars finished 4-8 in its debut season and finished in the bottom half of the Big 12 in conference play for the second straight year.

That was evident with Holgorsen, who served as the Cougars "offensive coordinator from 2008-09 and 2011-12.

Houston's coach learned about the Washington State coach who will face his team at NRG Stadium on Friday. Lopetegui has suffered losses to BYU, UCF and Cincinnati this season, but one has a special place in his mind because he appears to have helped put the Cougars in the driving seat at the end of the regular-season finale against Memphis for the first time in their history. After falling to a last-second field goal, UU's season high in points (35) and points per game (6.5) fell to the Grizzlies, 31-20.

Subscribe to the TicketSmarter newsletter to stay up to date on the upcoming Houston Cougars matchups. The official school colors of the University of Houston are scarlet, red, albino and white, and the mascot is a puma named Shasta. We'll first take a look back at the story of a Houston Cougar who shared a name with a Red Raiders legend.

Among the university's other sports teams, the baseball team is a member of the American Athletics Conference (AAC) and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The team is competing in the Big East Conference, a Division I team in Major League Baseball (MLB).

Houston's most significant rivalry right now is with Rice University, which is a member of Conference USA. Before Houston joined the now-defunct Southwest Conference, the University of Texas was one of Houston's main rivals.

The Cougars are split between Reliant Stadium and BBVA Compass Stadium, and the university's campus is home to many of its sports facilities, including the Robert E. Schröder Athletic Center, home of the Houston Astros baseball team. In bad weather, Premier Baseball in Texas is equipped with a baseball field, a field house and a practice field. Both teams played their home games near Robertson Stadium until it was demolished after the 2012 season. The new TDECU stadium opened in 2014 on the site of Robertson Stadium, but the team will host its first home game in 2015 at the new stadium.

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