Game #2 / Aggies vs. Bearkats
Sam Houston St.
(1-0, 0-0 vs. SEC)
KICKOFF/DATE:...... 6:00 (CT), Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013
SITE....................... Kyle Field, College station, Texas (Cap. 82,589)
TELEVISION............ Fox SPorts PPV
Bill Land, play-by-play
Shea Walker, commentary
Kayce Smith, sideline reporter
RADIO................... Texas A&M Sports Network
Dave South, play-by-play
Dave Elmendorf, commentary
Will Johnson, sideline
(SiriusXM channel: Sirius 135 / XM 200)
RANKINGS............. Sam Houston State.................................. (FCS: No. 4 - TSN / No. 4 - Coaches)
Texas A&M ...................................... PENDING (No. 7 - AP / No. 6 - USA Today)
SERIES HISTORY...... Texas A&M leads 11-0
LIVE AUDIO............ aggieathletics.com, radioaggieland.com
LIVE STATS............. aggieathletics.com
AGGIES TAKE ON fcs POWERHOUSE shsu
Texas A&M will continue its all-Texas school non-conference slate with 6 p.m. matchup with Football Championship Subdivision powerhouse Sam Houston State, which has advanced to the NCAA FCS final game the past two seasons. The Bearkats will be making the quick trip from Huntsville, Texas, which is a mere 53 miles from the Texas A&M campus.
• Despite the two schools’ close proximity, the Aggies and Bearkats have met just 11 times previously on the gridirion, and Saturday’s meeting will be just the third encounter since 1941. Texas A&M has won all 11 previous meetings.
• In the two most recent meetings, R.C. Slocum’s Aggies beat the Bearkats, 59-6, in 1997 and Kevin Sumlin’s first A&M squad defeated SHSU, 47-28, last season. Both of those A&M squads went on to earn invitations to the Cotton Bowl.
• Connection: Texas A&M offensive line coach B.J. Anderson was the run-game coordinator/offensive line coach at SHSU from 2005-08.
Aggies vs. Non-Conference opponents from Texas
All four of the Aggies’ non-conference opponents in 2013 are from the state of Texas -- Rice, Sam Houston State, SMU and UTEP. All four of those games will be played at Kyle Field.
• The last time Texas A&M lost a home game to a non-conference opponent from the state of Texas was Sept. 18, 1954 when Texas Tech, then members of the Border Conference, handed the Aggies a 41-9 loss in Paul “Bear” Bryant’s debut game as A&M’s head coach.
• Texas A&M has not lost a non-conference matchup with a team from the state of Texas anywhere since Sept. 25, 1964 when the University of Houston beat A&M 10-0 in Houston.
Offense hits four bills...again
The Aggies gained 486 total yards against Rice last week, which marked the 13th straight game that the offense has surpassed the 400-yard plateau, which is easily the longest streak in school history. Only Baylor has a longer streak of 400-yard offensive game in the NCAA FBS.
• Since head coach Kevin Sumlin’s arrival in College Station, the Aggies have surpassed 400 in 13-of-14 games, including 500-plus yards eight times.
• Digging deeper into the Aggies’ offensive surge, Texas A&M has posted 40 400-plus yardage outputs in 53 total games since shifting to a no-huddle, up-tempo offense in 2009. During that span, the Aggies have hit the 500-yard level 26 times. As a point of comparison, the Aggies reached 400 total yards in just 18 games in the decade of games prior to 2009 (116 games).
Coming to pass
Despite a first-time starter at quarterback and five new receivers added to the mix, the Aggies’ passing game opened 2013 with a smoothly efficient passing attack. The Aggie passers completed 20-of-27 passes (.741) for 284 yards and four touchdowns (with no pickoffs).
• The Aggies completed better than 70.0 percent of their passing attempts in the season-opener for the sixth straight year. From 1970-2007, the Aggies hit 70.0 percent of their pass attempts in the season-opener only three times (20-of-28, .714, 1996 vs. BYU), (9-of-12, .750, 1989 vs. LSU) and (19-of-27, .704, 1985 vs. Alabama).
• After one game, the Aggies rank No. 5 nationally in pass efficiency at 214.49
• The Aggies averaged 10.5 yards per attempt against Rice. A&M had just two games with a higher per-attempt average in 2012 (10.6 vs. Arkansas and 12.8 vs. Sam Houston State)
• The Aggies completed 15 of their last 18 passes against Rice (9-of-10 by Matt Joeckel, 6-of-8 by Johnny Manziel).
The Aggies used an eye-catching 16 true freshmen in last Saturday’s 52-31 win over Rice -- five on offense and 11 on defense. It was the most true freshmen ever used by Texas A&M in a season-opener, two more than the 13 that saw action in the 2009 opener against New Mexico.
• Only once since freshmen became eligible in 1972 has Texas A&M used more true freshmen in an entire season. Then-head coach Mike Sherman ended up using 18 true freshmen in 2009. Head coach Tom Wilson lettered 16 true freshmen in 1980.
• Since 1972, the Aggies have awarded varsity letters to 10 or more true freshman in a season only a handful of times: 18 in 2009, 16 in 1980, 11 in 1973 and 10 in 1972 and 2008.
• 39 of the the Aggies’ 96 tackles (40.6 percent) against Rice were made by newcomers (true freshmen, redshirt freshmen or transfers). Newcomers also contributed both sacks and 6.5 of the Aggies’ 9.0 tackles for loss.
• The Aggies started four newcomers on defense against Rice -- two true freshmen, one redshirt freshman and one junior college transfer.
School of Fish
POS Player Hometown (High School) Notes
DL Jay Arnold Rockwall, Texas (Heath) Made 1 tackle with .5 TFL vs. Rice
LB Darian Claiborne Port Allen, La. (Port Allen) Led team with 11 tackles, had 1.5 TFL
DB Noel Ellis New Orleans, La. (Karr) Made 1 tackle
DB Tavares Garner Missouri City, Texas (Manvel) Saw action against Rice
DL Isaiah Golden Carthage, Texas (Carthage) Made 3 tackles against Rice
WR LaQuvionte Gonzales Cedar Hill, Texas (Cedar Hill) Saw action at WR, 1 KOR for 7 yards
DL Daeshon Hall Lancaster, Texas (Lancaster) Made 3 solo tackles with 1 TFL
OL Ryan Lindblade Richmond, Texas (Foster) Former gray-shirt saw action vs. Rice
LB Jordan MastrogiovanniDallas, Texas (Jesuit) Made 4 tackles
WR Ricky Seals-Jones Sealy, Texas (Sealy) Made 3 catches for 84 yards w. 71-yard TD
DB Alex Sezer Jr. Orange, Texas (LC-M) Started at CB, made 4 tackles, 1 PBU
WR Jeremy Tabuayo Honolulu, Hawaii (St. Louis) Made 2 catches for 6 yards
DT Hardreck Walker Spring, Texas (Westfield) Started at DT, made 1 tackle
LB Shaan Washington Alexandria, La. (Senior) Made 5 tackles w. 1 QBS, 1.5 TFL, also FF
DB Jonathan Wiggins Houston, Texas (Alief Taylor) Made 1 tackle
WR Ja’Quay Williams Tyrone, Ga. (Sandy Creek) Saw action vs. Rice
Kyle Field is non-conference graveyard
Since 1985, Texas A&M has compiled a 61-5 record against non-conference opponents at Kyle Field, including 25 seasons with undefeated home records vs. non-conference teams. The only non-conference losses were to LSU (1987), Virginia Tech (2002), Pittsburgh (2003), Arkansas State (2008) and Miami (Fla.) (2008).
• DB Toney Hurd Jr. logged the 100th tackle of his career last week. Junior DB Howard Matthews needs four tackles to tally his 100th stop.
• PK Taylor Bertolet needs one touchback to reach 70 for his career. In 14 career games, Bertolet has booted 69 touchbacks, which is nearly five per game.
• WR Mike Evans needs two catches to reach 90 career catches in just 15 games, which would be the fastest in school history. The previous fastest to 90 Aggie was Jeff Fuller, who did in 20 games.
• QB Johnny Manziel needs 200 passing yards to become Texas A&M’s 12th 4,000-yard passer. He also needs 71 rushing yards to hit 1,500 for his career.
• Manziel’s third TD pass against Rice was his 50th TD of his 14-game career (combined rush/pass). He also logged his 300th completion vs. the Owls.
• Do-it-all Ben Malena needs four points to reach 100 for his career.
• Texas A&M are in the midst of a seven-game winning streak, which is the longest current streak in the SEC and the fifth longest in the NCAA FBS.
• Texas A&M have a streak of 15 straight sellouts at Kyle Field, which began with the 2010 Nebraska game.
• A&M has scored in double digits in 29 straight games dating back to the Aggies’ 9-6 win over Nebraska in 2010.
• The Aggies haven’t been shut out since 2003 -- a span of 116 games. In fact, A&M has only been kept under double digits in only five of those 116 games.
• WR Mike Evans has made four or more catches in 14 straight games, which is every game of his career.
• NCAA total offense rankings by Kevin Sumlin-coached teams:
2012 Texas A&M #3 572.2
2011 Houston #1 599.1
2010 Houston #11 480.5
2009 Houston #1 563.4
2008 Houston #2 562.8
• From 2009-12, A&M averaged 79.9 plays per game , which trailed only Oklahoma’s 80.6 plays/game average in that span.
• Texas A&M and OU were the only schools in NCAA FBS with 1,000+ plays in each of the past four seasons.
• The Aggies gained an average of 7.08 yards per offensive play in 2012, which was surpassed by just Georgia (7.09). Against Rice, A&M averaged 7.4 yards per play.
• A&M averaged more than 300 passing yards per game for first time in school history in 2012. The Aggies did it while rushing for more than 3,000 yards for the first time since 1990.
• The top four all-purpose gainers from 2012 return in 2013, and all four gained more than 900 yards -- quarterback Johnny Manziel, wide receiver Mike Evans, running back/kickoff return specialist Trey Williams and running back Ben Malena.
• The Aggies have had a 3,000-yard passer, 1,000-yard rusher and 1,000-yard receiver in consecutive years after having none in the first 116 years of Texas A&M football. It was achieved by Manziel (rushing and passing) and Evans (receiving) in 2012, and by Ryan Tannehill (passing), Cyrus Gray (rushing) and Ryan Swope (receiving) in 2011.
• A&M was outscored (14-7) in the first quarter by Rice. It was the first time an opponent has scored more than the Aggies in the first quarter since Ole Miss outscored A&M, 10-7.
• A&M had 29 or more rushes and multiple rushing touchdowns in every game during the Sumlin era.
• The Aggies averaged 5.90 yards/carry in 2012, which broke the previous school best of 5.8 set in 1990. It was the second-best per carry average in NCAA FBS behind Oregon’s 5.98 average.
• Johnny Manziel is the only player in FBS history to generate 5,000+ total yards, while rushing for 1,000+ yards. Previous high rusher among 5,000-yard gainer was Colt Brennan of Hawaii with 366 in 2006.
• The Aggies led the SEC in total offense, rushing offense, passing offense, scoring offense and third down percentage.
• Texas A&M completed 67.0 percent of its pass attempts in 2012, which was well ahead of the school record percentage of 61.6 set in 2011.
• The Aggies had multiple interceptions in a game for the fourth time during the Sumlin era against Rice last week. It was A&M’s first two-INT game since last year’s Alabama contest.
• Deshazor Everett and Tramain Jacobs are the only Aggies with multiple interceptions during their careers.
• Four 2013 defenders have scored touchdowns in their careers: Steven Jenkins and Deshazor Everett via INT returns, Tramain Jacobs from a fumble return and Nate Askew (who shifted from WR to LB during spring drills) via reception.
• Owning double-digit career starts among the defenders are Steven Jenkins (16), Julien Obioha (13), Toney Hurd Jr. (12), Deshazor Everett (12), Kirby Ennis (11).
• Texas A&M held opponents to a 32 percent (66-of-204) conversion rate on 3rd downs last season. The Aggies limited opponents to .200 or less on third downs in five games.
• Opponents completed just 56.4 percent of their passes last year, after connecting on 62.4 percent in 2011.
• Placekicker Taylor Bertolet was perfect against Rice with 44-yard field goal and 7-of-7 on extra points. He also had four touchbacks on nine kickoffs.
• Bertolet has registered a touchback on 69-of-111 kickoffs in his career.
• Thanks to Bertolet’s strong leg and A&M’s high-scoring offense, Texas A&M ranked No. 3 nationally with 65 touchbacks in 2012.
• Bertolet’s strong leg yielded a pair of 50-yard field goals in 2012, including a career-long 54-yarder against Louisiana Tech.
• Bertolet’s backup, junior Josh Lambo, was a first-round pick (8th overall) a goalie by FC Dallas in the MLS SuperDraft in 2008.
• In a bit of a rarity, starting OT Jake Matthews, son of NFL Hall of Famer Bruce, handled the deep snapping duties in 2012. Former walkon Alex Freeman was put on scholarship during preseason camp, and could be a factor at the position in 2013.
• In his starting debut, punter Drew Kaser averaged 62.7 yards on three punts against Rice. A&M leads the nation in net punting (59.0), but he doesn’t qualify for the individual statistics (must have 3.6 punts per game)
• Sophomore Trey Williams posted 557 yards on 25 kickoff returns last year, which ranks No. 7 on A&M’s kickoff return yardage list.
• Making their first career kickoff returns against Rice were senior Ben Malena and true freshman LaQuvionte Gonzalez.
Sumlin among coaching elite
Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin won 23 games the past two seasons, which was tied for second-most among all NCAA FBS coaches. Alabama’s Nick Saban led the way with 25 victories followed by the 23 wins by Sumlin, North Carolina State’s Dave Doeren, LSU’s Les Miles, Boise State’s Chris Peterson and Stanford’s David Shaw.
Most Wins (Last two seasons, 2011-12)
WINS Coach_________ School (s)
25 Nick Saban_____ Alabama
23 Dave Doeren___ North Carolina State (Northern Illinois)
Les Miles______ LSU
Chris Peterson__ Boise State
David Shaw____ Stanford
Kevin Sumlin___ Texas A&M (Houston)
22 Mark Richt_____ Georgia
Steve Spurrier__ South Carolina
21 Bill Snyder_____ Kansas State
Dabo Swinney__ Clemson
Jimbo Fisher___ Florida State
Youth movement on depth chart
A look at the official Texas A&M depth chart going into the Sam Houston State reveals an influx of talent from the heralded Aggies’ 2013 signing class. The depth chart features 18 true freshmen and three junior college transfers, as well as three redshirt freshmen and two four-year transfers.
Newcomers fill depth chart
Offense (12): WR Edward Pope (Fr-RS), OL Jeremiah Stuckey (So-TR), OL Germain Ifedi (Fr-RS), TE Cameron Clear (Jr-TR), WR Jeremy Tabuyo (Fr-HS), WR LaQuvionte Gonzalez (Fr-HS), WR Sebastian Larue (Fr-HS), WR Ja’Quay Williams (Fr-HS), WR Kyrion Parker (Fr-HS), QB Kenny Hill (Fr-HS), RB Brandon Williams (So-TR), RB Tra Carson (So-TR)
Defense (12): DE Tyrone Taylor (Fr-RS), DT Hardreck Walker (Fr-HS), DT Jay Arnold (Fr-HS), DT Isaiah Golden (Fr-HS), DT Justin Manning (Fr-HS), LB Daeshon Hall (Fr-HS), LB Jordan Mastrogiovanni (Fr-HS), LB Reggie Chevis (Fr-HS), LB Tommy Sanders (Jr-TR), CB Jonathan Wiggins (Fr-HS), DB Alex Sezer Jr. (Fr-HS), NICK Noel Ellis (Fr-HS)
Specialists (1): P Shane Tripucka (Fr-HS)
Maroon Goons clear the way
Paving the way for the Aggies’ offense is one of the biggest offensive fronts in school history, which features a pair of tackles that have been projected to be NFL first-round draft picks in the future. The projected starting five, self-titled the “Maroon Goons,” of senior All-American Jake Matthews (OT), juniors Cedric Ogbuehi (OT) and Jarvis Harrison (OG), sophomore Mike Matthews (C) and redshirt freshman Germain Ifedi (OG) weigh in at 1,526 pounds or 305.2 per goon.
Matthews shifted from right tackle to left tackle to replace Outland Trophy winner Luke Joeckel, while Ogbuehi moved from guard to right tackle.
Here’s the Beef
Lineman________________ Ht____ WT___ career starts
LT Jake Matthews______ 6-5___ 305___ 34 (34 consecutive)
LG Jarvis Harrison_______ 6-3___ 325___ 19 (15 consecutive)
C Mike Matthews______ 6-2___ 285___ 1 (1 consecutive)
RG Germain Ifedi_______ 6-5___ 311___ 1 (1 consecutive)
RT Cedric Ogbuehi______ 6-5___ 295___ 20 (19 consecutive)
The Texas A&M football team will honor the memory of fallen teammate Polo Manukainiu with a helmet sticker that reflects his Tongan heritage. The Aggies will wear the circular decal with Manukainiu’s #90 jersey and his first name on it. Inset in the jersey number will be a Tongan-inspired design. The Aggies will wear the decal throughout the 2013 season.
Texas A&M equipment manager Matt Watson said, “We wanted to come up with a tribute to Polo as a player, but also reflect a bit of his personality as well. After talking with several of his friends and family it was evident how much Polo’s Tongan heritage meant to him. After trying to incorporate partial elements of Polo’s actual Tongan Tribal arm tattoos we came up with this design that hopefully his family, friends, and teammates will deem a fitting and personal reflection to who he was both on and off the playing field.”
Manukainiu, from Euless, Texas, died along with two other passengers in a tragic automobile accident on July 29, 2013.
Texas A&M needs seven wins to join an elite group of college football programs with 700 or more all-time victories. Going into 2013, only 14 programs have hit the 700-win plateau: Michigan, Texas, Notre Dame, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Alabama, Tennessee, USC, Georgia, LSU, Penn State, Auburn and West Virginia. In its 119th season of football, Texas A&M has a 693-452-48 record (.601).
About the streak
Texas A&M is in the midst of a seven-game winning streak dating back to 2012. The last time the Aggies have had a longer winning streak was 1998 when the team reeled off 10 straight wins after a season-opening loss to Florida State in the Kickoff Classic.
1938-40 20 games
1956-57 14 games
1918-20 13 games
1917-18 13 games
1992 12 games
1998 10 games
1976-77 10 games
1975 10 games
1909-10 10 games
1993 9 games
1991 9 games
1940-41 9 games
1914-15 9 games
1911-12 9 games
1987 8 games
1910-11 8 games
1994 7 games
1986 7 games
1967 7 games
1927-28 7 games
1922-23 7 games
1904-05 7 games
1902-03 7 games
2012-13 7 games
ABOUT THE AGGIE COACHES
Several members of Texas A&M coaching staff played at the collegiate and professional level, including several that oversee the position that they played.
Kevin Sumlin Head Coach Linebacker at Purdue
Clarence McKinney Offensive Coordinator/Running Backs Quarterback/WR at U. of Mary
Mark Snyder Defensive Coordinator Free safety at Marshall
Jake Spavital Co-Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks Quarterback/punter at Missouri State
Marcel Yates Co-Defensive Coordinator/Secondary Defensive back for Boise State
Jeff Banks Special Teams Coordinator/Tight Ends Punter at Washington State
David Beaty Wide Receivers/Recruting Coordinator Wide receiver at Lindenwood U.
Mark Hagen Linebackers Linebacker at Indiana U.
Terry Price Defensive Line Defensive lineman at Texas A&M
Larry Jackson........ Director of FB Sports Performance Defensive end/linebacker at Texas A&M