The Annual SEC media days were held this past week and Coach Sumlin, Cedric Ogbuehi, Deshazor Everett, and Drew Kaser represented the Aggie contingent. Most reporters just wanted to ask Sumlin and the players about NFL departed Johnny Manziel. However, Sumlin was quick to shoot those questions down and remind the reporters that they were “at SEC Media Days” and those were “great questions for the Cleveland Browns.” Nevertheless, Sumlin continually course corrected the media session and opened up about A&M’s new facilities, the scheme and personnel of this year’s team, and his recruiting dominance in Texas.
Regarding the new stadium…
Our stadium redevelopment is second to none. It’s going to be an unbelievable facility. For those of you who have seen the pictures, they don’t do it justice. I think we’ll be ready to go, everything that we’ve been told points to the whole project being on time for this season. Then at the end of the season working on the west side stands and finishing the project for 2015.
Regarding the other facilities….
I think underneath the stadium is where our student‑athletes currently and future prospects have started to notice with the addition of new locker rooms, a new athletic training facility, new meeting rooms, things that bring us up to par and really set us aside I think from where we were facility‑wise and really put us on a level playing field with the best programs in the country.
We pride ourselves and look at ourselves as a player‑developmental program. Since we’ve been here at Texas A&M, the Davis Center, which is our new weight room, which is an absolutely beautiful facility; R.C. Slocum Nutrition Center, has given us the opportunity to give our players, our student‑athlete across the board, quality nutrition.
Scheme and Personnel
Regarding the offense…
Offensively I didn’t come here today to tell you who the quarterback was going to be, so we can eliminate those questions. That will play itself out. The good news is that we’ve got four of our five offensive linemen back, a really good tightend in Cam Clear, a lot of great players around him on the perimeter, and three exceptional runningbacks.
Regarding the defense….
Defensively I think we will have, believe it or not, more depth in our front seven, particularly in our front four. We’ve recruited and have more depth. Those guys are one year older. I think the key to our defense will be the rotation up front, the maturity of the guys who played last year, and getting better safety play. We’ll challenge those guys who played last year at safety early in camp, and we’ve got some young guys that we brought in.
Regarding specific personnel…
Myles has really, really impressed a lot of other players on the team, which is hard to do when you come in as a true freshman. I know he’s impressed Coach Jackson in the weight room. Walking in the door, one of the strongest guys on the football team. When they rank guys number one, they usually don’t screw that up. I don’t think they screwed this one up this year.
Jordan Mastrogiovanni moves into linebacker, which is his natural position. He’s 240 now.
Daeshon (Hall) … is a very, very athletic pass rusher. He’s one of the very few guys we had that could do that. He’s around 260 now. He’s a guy that came in around 225, 228. He’s 260, ready to go. Daeshon Hall, I think, has the ability to be a real breakout player in this league.”
Regarding the depth of the SEC…
I told you before the first year everybody was hooting and hollering, were excited about our recruiting class. Before I go downstairs to the press conference, we were ranked 10th or whatever it was, 9th, I don’t know, I go down to the press conference, and we’re fourth in our own league and third in our own division.
Regarding the direction of the Aggie team…
Moving to the SEC is one thing. But if we had got our brains beat out like everybody thought, I don’t think recruiting would be going as well anyway if we’re in the SEC. You look at where we are, particularly in the West, in terms of depth, that’s what we’re recruiting to. We had Thursday night in York, it was a great night. We had three guys drafted in the first round. Now, that’s the good news. Bad news, that’s the only three guys we had drafted. Friday, Saturday and Sunday went by, we didn’t have another guy drafted. You look at the top of our league, LSU, Alabama have nine and eight guys drafted, that speaks to depth across the board, whether they’re seniors, juniors, underclassmen or not.
Regarding his dominance over Texas in recruiting….
If I was surprised, I wouldn’t have taken the job. How is that (smiling)?
View Sumlin’s full media session here.