Texas A&M Football

Mood Swings: Texas A&M Football's five-year SEC rollercoaster ride

December 6, 2017
13,830

Drama, thy name is Texas A&M. Texas A&M football to be exact.

Over the last five years — Nov. 2012 until the present — A&M has the been the drama queen of college football. In that span, A&M football has produced more drama than a Kardashian marathon.

A&M football has belonged on TMZ more than ESPN. The Aggies have had more emotional swings than a bipolar, menopausal schizophrenic.

It wasn’t always this way. There was once a stable time when A&M’s periods of craziness were relegated to McGee’s keyed truck, Franchione’s VIP Newsletter and the list eater’s … well, eaten list.

Then came November 10, 2012 when A&M started to go bi-polar and experience swings to some of its most euphoric highs and and most morbid lows.

For example:

High: Johnny Manziel leads A&M to a stunning 29-24 victory over No. 1 Alabama.

Higher: Manziel becomes the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy.

Andrew Cagle
A&M's 2013 Cotton Bowl win over the Sooners was one of the brightest points of the last five years.

Highest: Manziel sets a FBS bowl record with 516 yards of total offense in a 41-13 Cotton Bowl blowout of Oklahoma.

Low: Accusations surface that Manziel broke NCAA rules by selling autographs, and his eligibility for the 2013 season is in jeopardy.

High: No proof is found that Manziel did sell autographs and he’s only suspended for the first half of the 2013 season-opener.

Low: Manziel injures his shoulder in a loss to Auburn. The injury nags him the rest of the regular season and is a major factor in closing losses to LSU and Missouri, which starts a trend of disappointing November collapses.

High: Manziel rallies the Aggies from a 21-point halftime deficit to defeat Duke 52-48 in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. It’s the largest comeback in school history.

Higher: Coach Kevin Sumlin signs the nation’s sixth-rated recruiting class of 2014. That class includes three five-star prospects — Kyle Allen, the nation’s top-rated quarterback recruit, receiver Speedy Noil and defensive end Myles Garrett.

Highest: Manziel, tackle Jake Matthews and receiver Mike Evans are all selected in the first round of the NFL draft. It’s the first time A&M has had three players selected in the first round in 20 years.

Low: Kenny Hill, who is vying with freshman Kyle Allen, the nation’s top-rated quarterback, recruit for the starting quarterback job, is arrested for public intoxication after passing out in a planter on Northgate.

Lower: Defensive starters Isaiah Golden and Darian Claiborne are arrested on drug and robbery charges. They’re dismissed from the team.

High: Hill wins quarterback competition. He opens the season by setting an A&M single-game school record with 511 passing yards in a 52-28 upset of No. 9 South Carolina. That starts a five-game winning streak in which A&M climbs to No. 6 in the nation.

Low: Hill throws three interceptions in a 48-31 loss to Mississippi State. That’s followed by a 35-20 loss to Ole Miss and a 59-0 loss to Alabama. Hill loses his starting job and eventually transfers to TCU.

High: Allen takes over as starting quarterback. In his second game as starter he throws four touchdown passes in the first half as A&M upsets No. 3 Auburn, 41-38.

TexAgs
With Kyle Allen at quarterback, the Aggies collapsed in November of 2014.

Low: A&M collapses in November. Sumlin fires defensive coordinator Mark Snyder.

High: Allen throws four touchdown passes and runs for another as A&M defeats West Virginia, 45-37, in the Liberty Bowl.

Higher: Sumlin hires defensive coordinator John Chavis away from LSU.

Higher: Five-star quarterback Kyler Murray, the No. 1 rated dual threat prospect, headlines a class rated No. 10 in the nation.

Highest: A&M beats No. 15 Arizona State, 38-16, in the 2015 opener. That starts a five-game winning streak as A&M climbs to No. 9 in the country.

Low: Allen throws three pick-sixes in a 41-23 loss to Alabama.

Lower: Playing with an sprained shoulder, Allen passes for just 88 yards in a 23-3 loss to Ole Miss. Sumlin refuses to acknowledge Allen is injured. Also, he does not reveal that Murray has been suspended and is not available to replace Allen.

Lower: Murray takes over the starting job, but loses it after a 26-10 loss to Auburn. A&M suffers another November fade.

Lowest: Allen announces his intentions to transfer and immediately leaves the team. A week later, Murray announces his intentions to transfer and immediately leaves the team. Jake Hubenak is left to start in a 27-21 Music City Bowl loss to Louisville.

High: Quarterback Trevor Knight announces he’s transferring from Oklahoma to Texas A&M.

Low: Receivers coach Aaron Moorehead draws criticism for a Twitter rant directed at player who de-committed from A&M. Another player de-commits in response.

Lower: Turner and special teams coach Jeff Banks are suspended two weeks for making sexually suggestive jokes at a women’s football clinic.

High: A&M defeats UCLA 31-24 in the 2016 season-opener. The Aggies start 7-1 and are fourth in the first College Football Playoff rankings.

Low: A&M is upset by Mississippi State, 35-28.

Lindsay Caudle, TexAgs
After another late-season fade, the Aggies lost to Kansas State in the 2016 Texas Bowl, completing another 8-5 season.

Lower: The Aggies blow a 15-point halftime lead and fall, 29-28, to Ole Miss, which starts a freshman quarterback making his first collegiate appearance. A&M then loses to LSU to complete another November collapse. A&M then falls to Kansas State in the Texas Bowl.

Still Lower: Just before the 2017 spring football game, reports surface that receiver Kirk Merritt exposed himself twice to tutors in the Bright Complex. He’s suspended from the spring game. Afterward, Sumlin refuses to take questions and instead sends players Christian Kirk and Armani Watts to a post-game press conference.

Lowest: Athletic Director Scott Woodward draws national criticism for publicly stating that Sumlin has to win in 2017 to retain his job as head coach.

High: The Aggies start fast in the 2017 season-opener and take a 44-10 lead with 4:08 remaining in the third quarter.

Low: A&M blows its huge lead in 20 minutes of play and loses, 45-44. It’s the biggest blown lead in college football in over a decade.

Lower: A&M loses three of its last four Southeastern Conference games to finish 7-5. It marks the fifth consecutive year the Aggies complete the regular season with eight victories or less. Sumlin is fired.

High: Despite skepticism and ridicule from the national media, Woodward targets Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher as Sumlin’s successor.

Higher: Speculation grows that Fisher is indeed interested in A&M.

Highest: Fisher, who had six 10-win seasons and won a national championship at Florida State, agrees to a 10-year, $75 million deal to be A&M’s next coach.

Perhaps Fisher will prove the Lamictal for A&M’s bipolar disorder.

The Aggies are certainly counting on him to provide a lot more victories. And a lot less drama.

Discussion from...

Mood Swings: Texas A&M Football's five-year SEC rollercoaster ride

fighterbull
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AG
Great retrospective read. In response to:

"Lowest: Athletic Director Scott Woodward draws national criticism for publicly stating that Sumlin has to win in 2017 to retain his job as head coach"

Gonna have to respectfully disagree.

How many seasons did Fran get? 5

How many seasons did Sherman get? 5

How many seasons did Sumlin get? 6 With infinitely more resources. The 12th Man was ready for the change as well.

Gig 'em.

3TFunding.com
caleblyn
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Dang Olin, that took some time and surely was very disappointing to have to relive some of that crap! There was some great highs, but the lows were bringing back some bad indigestion!
94DallasAG
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AG
^
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BAS
Spicewood Ag
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AG
Thanks Olin. Leonardo already did this though;

Tripacer
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Sherman got 4.
Bradrsinclair
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R
Why hasn't Johnny landed a job in the CFL?
Reload8098
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AG
Nice work Olin. Really sums up why Sumlin was fired.
Aggiebrewer
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AG
High: we ain't t.u.

bodaciousbood14
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AG
Well when you put it like that...
Wede01
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AG
This. is. BAS.
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