School is out, summer has definitely arrived, and Aggie football is a mere 68 days away from kickoff. Despite some analysts picking A&M to finish last in the SEC West, expect the Aggies to take a step forward in 2015. Kyle Allen is more comfortable with the offense, John Chavis is whipping the defense into shape, and more talent from the 2015 recruiting class is now on campus.
But even though many of these new recruits are talented enough to play, and in some cases start, this 2015 Aggie football team finally has the depth where they don’t them need to.
“Really for the first time across the board [we have depth,]” Sumlin said. “This is year four, which should be the case.”
That being said, A&M has a number of true freshman that could make an impact in 2015. Here are the top five guys to remember.
The 5-star pass catcher out of Arizona chose the Aggies over pretty much everyone. In high school he broke every meaningful stat at his position in his state. Also, he is easily the most polished wide receiver that has arrived in Aggieland (remember that Speedy Noil and Ricky Seals-Jones were quarterbacks in high school). Kirk entered as an early enrollee and impressed right away filling the vacancy left by departing senior Malcome Kennedy. And although several other recruits should get meaningful minutes this upcoming season, Christian Kirk will likely be the only true freshman to start in A&M’s opener against Arizona State.
For a defense that ranked 102 out of 125 in 2014, Mack’s arrival is welcomed possibly more than any other recruit. He is a truly gifted defensive lineman that will be counted on early to wreak havoc in the backfield, especially in 3rd down situations. His size (350lbs) currently leads the Aggie roster and will pave the way for him to develop into an elite run-stopper. Mack brings his 5-star ranking and high expectations into a defense that has tons of talent and now John Chavis. Expect big things from this big defensive lineman in 2015.
National Gatorade Player of the Year. Three consecutive state titles. 42-0 as a starter at Allen. Name a TXHS football accolade, Kyler Murray has it. He is the ultimate competitor and will bring that edge into a quarterback battle against another 5-star quarterback recruit, Kyle Allen. Most pundits expect Allen to hold onto the starting spot in 2015. But make no mistake, Kyler Murray will play in 2015. He is already drawing rave reviews from his teammates on his accuracy, quick release, and ability to spin a very catchable ball.
For many Aggie fans, Justin Dunning has flown under the radar. There was no drama in his recruitment; he committed to A&M November 10, 2013 (over a year from signing day) and never wavered. Also, he didn’t boast the star power that Daylon Mack or Kyler Murray has. That being said, the kid is a playmaker. Had it not been for a blown ACL in the first game of his junior season, his recruitment would have picked up steam and probably led to a 5-star ranking. At The Opening last summer, he led all secondary with 6 interceptions in 7-on-7 competition. And now he is earning praise from his teammates on his ridiculous range and ability to break up passes. The safety position finally appears to be a position of strength with Justin Evans and Armani Watts starting and Donovan Wilson and Justin Dunning rotating in.
It’s been a long time since A&M has had a true freshman offensive lineman step into the starting lineup from day one. 2010 to be exact, and that player was, eventual first round draft pick, Luke Joeckel. Joining him in that recruiting class was Jake Matthews and Cedric Ogbuehi, 2 other first round draft picks. Keaton Sutherland is the highest ranked offensive lineman A&M has landed since those three guys in 2010. And by all appearances, he is living up to the hype. Sutherland enrolled early and has impressed new OL coach, Dave Christensen, throughout spring camp. He is battling Jermaine Eluemunor for the opening at left guard.