Texas A&M Football: Winners and Losers from Week 12 Game vs. Sam Houston State
The Texas A&M Football team beat the Sam Houston State Bearkats 47-28 at Kyle Field on Saturday. It was the Aggies' fourth win in a row and improved their record to 9-2 for the season.
The loss dropped Sam Houston State to 8-3 on the season as they prepare to enter the FCS playoffs.
With the win, the Aggies are still under consideration for a BCS bowl game. If the Aggies can beat Missouri, then they will finish the season at 10-2 and will be a prime candidate for the Fiesta Bowl.
This is a look at the winners and losers from the Ags' victory over SHSU.
Winner: Johnny Manziel
Aggie freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel completed 14 of his 20 pass attempts for 267 yards and three touchdowns. He also added 100 yards rushing on 16 carries with two touchdowns.
Manziel became the first freshman in the history of college football to pass for 3,000 yards and rush for 1,000 yards in the same season. He set the all-time total yardage record for freshmen.
Manziel threw an 89-yard touchdown pass to Uzoma Nwachukwu on the Aggies' first offensive play of the second half. He sat on the bench and relaxed for the rest of the game.
Loser: Special Teams
The Aggies continued their struggles in the kicking game. A poor snap on an extra point attempt led to another miss.
Dustin Harris decided to fair catch consecutive punts on the Aggies' five-yard line. Not exactly what you expect from a senior punt returner. The Ags also allowed the Bearkats to convert on two onside kicks.
That means that opponents have been successful on three of four onside kicks against the Aggies this season.
The Ags need to find someone who can consistently make extra points. Hopefully the month off before the bowl game will help Taylor Bertolet find his groove.
Winner: Kevin Sumlin
With each successive win, the Aggies head coach moves closer to an offseason raise. Sumlin is one of the lowest paid head coaches in the SEC at around $2 million per year.
After shocking the nation in his first season at A&M, expect Sumlin to receive a raise of somewhere around $1 million per year after the season been completed.
Sumlin had Manziel attempt to kick an extra point in order to lighten things up a little bit. Sumlin understands that the game of football is supposed to be fun.
He makes the game fun and his players love him for it. They work hard and win because their head coach understands that football is still a game.
Loser: A&M Second-Team Defense
After Manziel hit Nwachukwu with an 89-yard touchdown pass to start the second half, Sumlin pulled the starters on both sides of the ball. The second-team defense left a lot to be desired.
The backups allowed Sam Houston State to score four touchdowns in the second half. They tackled poorly, and looked disinterested on the field.
After watching the second- and third-team defenders in live action, it was pretty obvious why Sumlin is bringing in such a large recruiting class.
The Aggies need all the help they can get. There is not very much depth on defense.
Winner: Donnie Baggs
While the second-team defense struggled, backup linebacker Donnie Baggs had a very strong game. The sophomore outside linebacker had four total tackles. He added a tackle for loss and an interception.
Baggs has seen extensive playing time this season, including a start against Louisiana Tech. He will be expected to step in next year and start after Jonathan Stewart and Sean Porter are lost to graduation.
Baggs has been a very solid member of the defense this season playing in the nickel.
Loser: A&M Fans
The second half of the game featured some of the more boring football seen on Kyle Field in quite some time.
The Aggies had consecutive one-play drives featuring long touchdown passes to start the second half. After that, the fans in the stands were treated to watching the SHSU offense grind down the clock with their running game.
Fans left the stands in droves starting in the third quarter. The play on the field from the backup offense and defense was uninspiring.
SHSU successfully executed two onside kicks so their offense stayed on the field for most of the second half. Watching backups go through the motions against a FCS team is not very entertaining football.
Winner: Uzoma Nwachukwu
The senior receiver from Allen, Texas had a career day against Sam Houston State. Nwachukwu caught four passes for 160 yards and a touchdown.
In his second-to-last-game ever at Kyle Field, Nwachukwu put a show on for the fans. It was the first 100-yard game for Nwachukwu this season.
The touchdown gives Nwachukwu five on the year. That is the most he has scored since he had six touchdowns his freshman season.
Loser: Christine Michael
The senior running back was kicked out of the game for a hit on a Sam Houston State defender after the play. Michael was retaliating for the defender hitting Manziel.
He was protecting his teammate, but he should know better than to be drawn into a situation like that.
If this had been any other game other than SHSU, his absence could have been a major blow to the team.
Winner: LeKendrick Williams
LeKendrick Williams is a sophomore wide receiver from Houston's Sharpstown High School who Mike Sherman recruited to return kicks and punts on special teams.
Under Sumlin, he has been a solid backup receiver. Williams had two receptions for 86 yards against SHSU. The highlight play was an 80-yard touchdown reception from Jameill Showers.
Williams has five receptions for 116 yards and two touchdowns on the season.