The Bulldogs (21-5, 9-2 Conference USA) shot 48.3 percent from the field and outrebounded Rice 41-24. Jaron Johnson and Isaiah Massey each had 12 points, and Kenneth Smith had 11 assists with seven boards.
Rice (7-17, 2-9) stumbled to an 18-of-47 shooting performance (38.3 percent) and committed 23 turnovers. Austin Ramljak and Max Guercy led the Owls with nine points apiece.
Marcus Jackson hit a layup to open the scoring for Rice, but Louisiana Tech rolled from there, as McNeail hit three late 3-pointers in the first half to storm out to a 42-17 halftime advantage. The Bulldogs, who entered Saturday in a four-way tie for first place in the C-USA, coasted in the second half to stay in the race with Middle Tennessee and UTEP.