25 Texas A&M - Sports Illustrated Vault | SI.com
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25 Texas A&M

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OPPOSING COACH'S TAKE

[Junior wide receiver] CHRISTIAN KIRK is a dynamic guy, so you have to do a lot to limit what he can do once he gets the football. When you punt to him, you try to get capable guys out there that can cover and keep him corralled, but everybody's trying that and it doesn't seem to be working. [Sophomore running back] Trayveon Williams is a big play waiting to happen. They're always talented on the offensive line. Any program that can keep putting out first-rounders at the offensive line position—that's hard to do.

[Senior] Armani Watts [5'11", 205]—he's going to be one of the top safeties that we play. [Senior safety Donovan Wilson, 6'1", 200] is a really good player and doesn't get as much recognition as he should for being one of the top DBs in the conference. He reminds you of the Honey Badger [former LSU star Tyrann Mathieu], who just plays hard, with good toughness. They lost a lot at defensive end and don't really have the same caliber of replacement. They do have [6'1", 320-pound junior defensive tackle] Daylon Mack. He's hard to block, hard to move off the point of attack and gets good penetration.

Talentwise, top-to-bottom, they can line up with anybody in the country and play ball.

OFFENSIVE RANKINGS (1 TO 128)

[The following text appears within an illustration. Please see hardcopy or PDF for actual illustration.]

THIRD-DOWN CONVERSION % (77TH)

YARDS PER PASS ATTEMPT (69TH)

COMPLETION % (107TH)

YARDS PER CARRY (9TH)

SACKS ALLOWED (35TH)

TURNOVERS LOST (82ND)

POINTS PER DRIVE (69TH)

YARDS PER PLAY (30TH)

DEFENSIVE RANKINGS (1 TO 128)

[The following text appears within an illustration. Please see hardcopy or PDF for actual illustration.]

THIRD-DOWN CONVERSION % ALLOWED (58TH)

YARDS PER PASS ATTEMPT ALLOWED (44TH)

COMPLETION % ALLOWED (69TH)

YARDS PER CARRY ALLOWED (63RD)

SACKS (17TH)

TURNOVERS GAINED (32ND)

POINTS PER DRIVE ALLOWED (48TH)

YARDS PER PLAY ALLOWED (56TH)

STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE RATING

49

The SEC West is an unforgiving beast, and A&M probably won't get through it without at least a couple of losses. The Aggies do host Alabama (10/7), but a late trip to LSU (11/25) is daunting, as is a tricky nonconference matchup at UCLA (9/3) to open the season.

THE PLAYER TO KNOW

Junior wide receiver Christian Kirk may be Texas A&M's most dangerous offensive weapon, but sophomore running back TRAYVEON WILLIAMS is its most valuable piece on that side of the ball. The four-star recruit had no issues transitioning from the Texas high school ranks to the SEC as a true freshman last season: He rushed for 1,057 yards on 6.78 yards per carry with eight touchdowns, while forcing opponents to account for the possibility of a routine handoff turning into a long TD. At 5'9", 200 pounds, Williams is shifty and explosive. With questions at quarterback, the Aggies won't hesitate to let Williams do the heavy lifting on offense. A sophomore leap seems like a realistic possibility.