Texas A&M Football: 5 Reasons Ryan Swope Deserves the NCAA 2014 Cover

Michael Taglienti@@miketag98Featured ColumnistMarch 3, 2013

Texas A&M Football: 5 Reasons Ryan Swope Deserves the NCAA 2014 Cover

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    Texas A&M wide receiver Ryan Swope and Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson are both finalists to be featured on the cover of EA Sports' NCAA Football 14 video game. Swope deserves to be featured on the cover of the popular video game. 

    The EA Sports NCAA video game is one of the most popular sports games on the market. Getting a player on the cover is a huge coup for the recruiting and marketing for that particular college; due to NCAA rules, that player can no longer be playing college ball.

    The cover is featured in national television commercials and is in the homes of millions of video game players across the country. You cannot buy that kind of exposure to prospective students and football recruits.

    The cover of the 2013 game featured 2011 Heisman winner Robert Griffin III from Baylor. EA Sports was able to put Griffin on the cover because he had left Baylor a year early to enter the NFL. Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel was the defining college football player of the 2012 season.

    Manziel cannot be featured on the cover this year because he is still playing college football. Swope was chosen to represent the Aggie team. This is a look at why Swope should be featured on the cover rather than Robinson.

The SEC Is College Football

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    A team from the Southeastern Conference has won the BCS National Title seven years in a row. Some mock NFL drafts have four of the top five players selected coming from the SEC.

    Georgia, LSU and Alabama each sent more than 10 players to the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine. The SEC has the best players and plays the best brand of football in college today. When the average fan thinks of college football, he or she thinks of the SEC. 

    The cover of the NCAA game should feature an SEC player because the SEC is college football right now.

Swope Had a Better 2012

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    Ryan Swope had a better season in 2012 than Denard Robinson did. Swope set a school record for receptions as a senior, when he caught 72 passes.

    Swope had 913 yards receiving and eight touchdowns for the most explosive offense in the SEC. He was at his best in big games, with 11 receptions for 111 yards and a touchdown against No. 1 Alabama.

    Swope had eight receptions for 104 yards and a touchdown in the Cotton Bowl. When the Aggies needed him, Swope came through in the clutch.

    Denard Robinson suffered through an injury-plagued 2012 season. He switched positions from quarterback to running back because he could no longer throw the ball.

    Robinson did manage to pass for 1,319 yards and nine touchdowns in 2012. He also threw nine interceptions. He rushed for 1,166 and seven touchdowns. Robinson had a mediocre season due to injuries that can only be categorized as a disappointment by Michigan fans.

    Swope earns the cover with play on the field during the 2012 season.

The Aggies Are the "It" Team in College Football Right Now

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    The Texas A&M Aggies are the "it" team now, in the national news every week, mostly due to the presence of Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel.

    The Aggies and their surprising success during their inaugural season in the SEC was one of the biggest stories in college football in 2012.

    Ryan Swope was a big part of that story. He was an integral part to the success of the team. Ten years from now, when football fans look back at the 2012 season, most fans will not  remember Michigan and Denard Robinson, but they will recall A&M, Swope and Manziel. 

    That popularity and momentum should be celebrated with Swope being put on the cover of the NCAA Football 14 video game.

The Aggies Had a Better Season

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    Ryan Swope was part of the 2012 Texas A&M team that ended up the season at 11-2 and ranked in the Top 5. Robinson led Michigan to an 8-5 record and a bowl loss.

    The Aggies played in the SEC, easily the best conference in the country. Michigan plays in the B1G, which was a very weak conference in 2012.

    Swope was an integral part of a team that overachieved and shocked the nation. Robinson was part of an average Michigan team that disappointed in 2012.

    Why should Robinson be rewarded for being part of an average team?

Swope Will Be Drafted Higher

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    For those who have not been watching him play for the past four years, Ryan Swope surprised many with his performance at the NFL Scouting Combine. He ran a 4.34 in the 40-yard dash, contradicting the scouting profile that said he had average acceleration and straight-line speed.

    Swope's "surprising" speed and athleticism will likely push him into being a second-round selection. Swope proved that he has the speed to be a deep threat in the NFL.

    Denard Robinson is switching positions from quarterback to wide receiver in the NFL. He showed very good speed at the combine with a 4.43 in the 40, but he is considered a project at the next level.

    Swope will be a higher pick in the NFL draft than Robinson. He should be rewarded for his outstanding play on the field at the combine with the video game cover.