It's back. No, not Bush No. 1.
Football. College style.
We're just around the corner from the start of training camps, double sessions, working out in stupid heat, and all the other fun that getting ready for the season entails.
And for us fans, most of whom will be sitting on their fat duffs, it is time to do what we do best...speculate.
Here are ten predictions for the Aggies upcoming 2010 gridiron campaign.
Tim DeRuyter came over this year from Air Force, where he managed to take an undersized and slow Air Force team (by D1 standards) and get great results out of them.
Last year the Falcons were ranked 11th in total defense, which is not too shabby, considering their schedule included several teams with considerable firepower. Their schedule included top ten TCU, and top twenty five squads BYU, Utah, Houston, and Navy.
At A&M, he inherits the team that was the worst, statistically, in the Big 12 last year. He also inherits, however, nine starters including All-American Defensive End Von Miller.
The extra year of experience and time in the weight room should increase the skill level, and DeRuyter’s planned switch to the 3-4 fits the Aggie personnel much better.
Watch for some surprisingly good results…and some post season kudos for DeRuyter.
With the best offense in the Big 12, and a fortified defense under DeRuyter, expect to see the Aggies post up at least nine wins this year, and get into the top 20 mix for the first time in a while.
Big 12 South Champs? Nope. They have the talent, but will gag and choke against a couple clubs.
Nine wins in the regular season is, however, a marked improvement over the past couple of years.
And Mike Sherman can breath a little easier.
The Aggie D will be vastly improved this year. The 3-4 scheme fits the personnel. Von Miller will be a force to be reckoned with.
But the Aggies have to contend with an Arkansas team that is a dark horse contender for a BCS bowl in game five.
Sixteen starters, led by NFL caliber quarterback Ryan Mallett return, including eight of his henchmen on a very talented offense.
Expect a shootout before a sold out crowd at the neutral site of Jerry World in Arlington, Texas (whose city motto is “what we lack in charm, we make up for in traffic congestion").
But expect to see the Hogs prevail.
It’s like a neutron bomb. The Pirate is gone.
But some of the most obnoxious fans in college football remain.
And boy, oh, boy, will they revel in beating the Aggies to upend a lot of Big 12 South championship hopes.
Are the Red Raiders from the plains better than A&M?
But they’ll win. Somehow. Just because.
Von Miller led the nation in sacks last year on a defense that was last in the league in just about every category.
Thus, despite the fact that his opponents could double team him and his own teammates in the defensive backfield couldn’t stop a computer geek from scoring at the Miss Texas pageant, he still managed to get to the quarterback with regularity.
This year, he’ll be operating out of a 3-4 scheme that is perfectly suited to his speed and athleticism, and should create mismatches that do not allow for constant double teaming.
Expect a slew of sacks again and some serious consideration for the Outland.
In 2009 he had 3,579 passing yards. 30 TD's. Only eight interceptions. 506 rushing yards and eight TD's.
On a team where he had to play with his back against the wall since the defense was busy giving it away like FEMA trailers after Katrina.
With a better D and most of his offense back, expect to see big, big things out of Mr. Johnson.
Can he become the Aggies first Hiesman winner since John David Crow in 1957?
Dunno. But he'll be in the final five, that's for sure.
Poor Ol' Baylor. They have not had a winning season in 15 years now.
This season, the good folks up in Waco, who don't dance, don't chew, and don't go with the girls that do, are actually getting uppity.
They are busy talking about the return of their amazin' quarterback Robert Griffin from injury, how good a coach Art Briles is and such.
What they ain't talkin' bout is how many starters return on their defense, which pretty much sucked already.
Two. That would be one plus one for you math majors.
So expect Griffin to be slingin' the ball around a lot trying to come from behind and the Bears to, once again, fail to crack the .500 mark.
And watch the talented Aggie O put a good ol' fashioned whuppin' on them.
At least 50.
Ya heard it here first.
The Aggies will bow to pressure from the politically correct and incorporate women into the yell leaders.
After all, the corp is co-ed, the corp band is co-ed, and the bon fire is no more.
It is a modern, co-educational institution interested in inclusiveness and reaching out to the female fans in Aggieland.
Yeah right. And they're gonna let Bevo take a dump in front of their bench too.
The Huskers rode the tail of the Tiger last year on the back of a freak of nature named Ndamukong Suh.
Oh sure, they have some pretty good talent back on their defense (although in addition to Suh they also lost their number two and three leading tacklers).
But their offense stinks. Stunk last year. Putrid again this year.
The Aggies get Nebraska in game eleven.
Which means the Aggie offense will be firing on all cylinders, and their defense will be operating as a jelled unit.
They will score on the soon to be Big Ten (or whatever the heck they’re gonna call it) Huskers. And the corn boys ain’t going to do much scoring on A&M
Result. A win. A big one.
Just in time to head into the rivalry with tu.
Come this Thanksgiving, an Aggie team operating on all cylinders will take the Longhorns to the woodshed.
Their offense, which put up a bunch of points on the Horns last year, will do the same again.
Their D, operating out of DeRuyter’s 3-4 and with a full season behind them, will throttle the Horns by forcing their quarterback to make big plays.
And this year, the quarterbacks name is not Colt.
Whup. Gig em'.
This will allow the Aggies to proudly claim title to being the second best team in the state of Texas,
Unfortunately for them, some Froggies up in Fort Worth will be laying claim to number one in the state.
This will perhaps give some impetus for both teams to jettison the over matched sub-division (1AA) teams on their schedule and find a way to play each other again.
And some of the upset Texas fans might go kinda ballistic.