2016 Record – 8-5 ( 4-4 )
Returning Starters – 6 on Offense, 6 on Defense
Leading Returning Passer – Jake Hubenak (61-104) 2 INT, 58.7 PCT, 884 Yards, 6 TD
Leading Returning Rusher – Trayveon Williams (156 Att – 1057 Yards) 6.8 Avg, 8 TD
Leading Returning Receiver – Christian Kirk (83 Catches), 928 Yards, 11.2 Avg, 9 TD
Leading Returning Tackler – Otaro Alaka (30 Solo, 44 Ast) 74 Total
Preseason MVP – Christian Kirk Wide Receiver
Aggies make some of the coolest hype videos, here’s a couple
-The elephant in the room for Texas A&M football in the coming year is the vacancy at the quarterback position. The competition is tight between underwhelming senior Jake Hubenak, true freshman Kellen Mond, and redshirt freshman Nick Starkel. Kevin Sumlin is definitely in a pickle in terms of who he should start, but everyone knows that Hubenak has a low ceiling, and he wasn’t too impressive last year when he played. I’d put my money on Starkel getting the lion’s share of playing time, having shown the greatest arm strength during the spring game. The quick footed Mond will also most likely see the field, but he has a long way to go on the passing front. Unfortunately, the quarterback position might be the second biggest concern heading into the season. Check out all three quarterbacks in the edited spring game footage below.
-Make that two elephants in the room for Texas A&M, as their offensive line is undergoing an overhaul. The interior linemen in Erik McCoy and Colton Prater are adequate, but there will be two brand new tackles this season. Perhaps the Aggies have made leaps and bounds in terms of their offensive line during the offseason, but all preseason experts and articles point to it as a glaring weakness.
-As usual the Aggies are very strong at the skill positions. The running game for the Aggies looks very strong with both running backs, Keith Ford and Trayveon Williams coming back. This could be a breakout year for both backs as the Aggies will have to depend heavily on their running game with such uncertainty at the quarterback position. Check out Trayveon Williams do his thing in the video below.
-No one really ever questions anymore the strength of the Aggies receiving core, as for the past several years they have consistently had their studs drafted in the NFL draft. Christian Kirk leads a group that is extremely athletic, with the usual highly touted freshman joining the party. Look for the offense to rely heavily on Christian Kirk, because anytime he has the ball in his hands there is a chance he will turn it into points. Kirk will also be their feature return man, so watch for many teams to kick away from Kirk. Since he has arrived Kirk has been a playmaker, perhaps he might even enter the Heisman Trophy conversation, video evidence to this claim right below. The only thing that can stop this receiving core is poor play at quarterback, which could very well be the case this year for the Aggies.
-Heavy hitter, and future Sunday afternoon playmaker Armani Watts leads a defense that has traditionally not lived up to the “Wrecking Crew” name. The Aggies were ranked 90th last year in total defense, and that was with the first overall pick in Myles Garrett. I don’t see any reason that the Aggies will magically turn into a top 3 SEC defense.
-As usual the Aggies have a highly touted recruiting class. The three biggest playmakers that signed to A&M are linebacker Anthony Hines, wide receiver Jhamon Ausbon, and dual threat quarterback Kellen Mond. Below are highlights of each player.
Schedule and Predictions
Sept. 3 – at UCLA – L
Sept. 9 – Nicholls State – W
Sept. 16 – Lousiana – Lafayette – W
Sept. 23 – Arkansas in Arlington – W
Sept. 30 – South Carolina – W
Oct. 7 – Alabama – L
Oct. 14 – at Florida – L
Oct. 28 – Mississippi State – W
Nov. 4 – Auburn – L
Nov. 11 – New Mexico – W
Nov. 18 – at Ole Miss – W
Nov. 25 – at LSU – L
Predicted Record 7-5
-I’m probably going to get a lot of shit for these predictions, but predicting who’s going to win in the SEC is a tall task.
-My basis for these picks is the big question mark at quarterback, and the history of mediocrity that Kevin Sumlin has made a tradition of at Texas A&M.
-With as weak as their defense is, I don’t see how they will be able to put up enough points against opponents the likes of Alabama, Florida, and LSU.
-At what point does this mediocrity down in College Station result in a search for a new head coach? Maybe this year will be the catalyst for A&M to go out and find a coach who can eventually turn it around. With the kind of recruits A&M gets, they shouldn’t be putting up 8-5 records.
-I will eat my words if A&M has a stellar season, and I could see that being a possibility with the kind of talent they have. Every game is winnable with the talent they put on the field, but like I said I don’t think talent is the problem.