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Texas A&M Football

Following early loss, Aggie fans quickly turned from hopeful to fearful

September 29, 2021
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Psychologists consider hope and fear to be related emotions.

Aggies certainly can relate to the relation.

A month ago, Aggie football fans were hopeful that Texas A&M could duplicate coach Jimbo Fisher’s fourth year at Florida State.

Now, they’re fearful A&M could duplicate Fisher’s final season in Tallahassee.

To review: Florida State won the national championship with a redshirt freshman quarterback — Jameis Winston — and a nasty defense in 2013.

That was Fisher’s fourth year as the Seminoles’ coach.

Jamie Maury, TexAgs
Haynes King will miss at least a couple more games after suffering a broken leg in Week Two vs. Colorado.

This is his fourth year as the coach of the Aggies.

A&M opened the season with a redshirt freshman quarterback — Haynes King — and a defense projected to be quite nasty.

But in 2017 — Fisher’s final year at Florida State — the Seminoles lost quarterback Deondre Francois to injury early in the season. Backup James Blackman struggled mightily, and the Seminoles limped to a 7-6 finish.

The Aggies lost quarterback Haynes King to a broken leg. Backup Zach Calzada is struggling behind an injury-riddle offensive line.

The Aggies are 3-1 after losing 20-10 to Arkansas. Alabama looms later on the schedule, as do Ole Miss, Auburn and LSU.

Should the Aggies fall to Mississippi State on Saturday, a break-even season appears possible. Could there even be a threat of a losing season?

That high-pitched sound you hear and the smell of burning rubber is the Aggies slamming the brakes on such hysteria.

“It’s just one loss at the beginning of the season,” junior safety Demani Richardson said. “We know we have mistakes we have to clean up. We just know we have to make it an urgency to clean it up and stay together as a team.

“We’re not worried about the haters and the doubters. We’re just worried about focusing on ourselves and just playing as a team.”

Receiver Ainias Smith went as far as to suggest the loss to Arkansas will give the Aggies a jolt in the right direction.

“We’re not worried about the haters and the doubters. We’re just worried about focusing on ourselves and just playing as a team.”
- A&M safety Demani Richardson

“Nobody likes the feeling of losing,” Smith said. “When you do lose, you’re going to remember that feeling. I’m pretty sure this team is going to remember this feeling. We’re going to come back a whole lot stronger.”

Comforting words but just words, nevertheless. The Aggies need to back them up with action.

The line must block better. Maybe it will with guard Layden Robinson expected to return to the starting lineup.

Receivers must get open. Perhaps they will, especially if Chase Lane and Caleb Chapman are back in action.

Calzada must make faster decisions and pass more accurately. He may show progress by gaining experience with each game.

Even the Aggies touted defense must dramatically raise its level of play.

A&M was second in the nation in run defense last season. Now, the Aggies are 92nd. At least, Mississippi State seldom runs as quarterback Will Rogers is not a rushing threat.

The Aggies cannot let frustration affect their play.

“You just have to stay level-headed. Always be encouraging,” Smith said. “Never give a sense of doubt with what’s going on on the field.”

Body language indicates some players are frustrated. Fans are certainly frustrated. Fisher, however, is not.

“I’m not frustrated,” Fisher said. “(I’m) Disappointed (because) we can play better, but I’m not frustrated. Frustration can’t set in. Frustration clouds your thinking.

Jamie Maury, TexAgs
Ainias Smith had two catches for 35 yards vs. Arkansas. In four games, he has 15 receptions for 170 yards.

“You can be disappointed about what you do, but you’ve got to keep your head about you and how you coach and what you do. We know we can do the things we need to do; just got to do them better.”

The Aggies must do better fast. Need a reason for urgency? Consider these facts:

• Mississippi State coach Mike Leach is 7-4 in his career against A&M. More troubling, the Bulldogs have scored at least 24 points in each of their four games.

• Meanwhile, A&M is averaging just 10 points and has been held to fewer than 300 total yards against Power 5 opponents. Only running back Isaiah Spiller is producing at a high level.

• The line has allowed nine sacks. Calzada is completing just 52.8 percent of his passes. He passed for fewer than 200 yards against Colorado and Arkansas. Star tight end Jalen Wydermyer caught one pass last week. Star receiver Ainias Smith caught two.

But as the old saying goes: “It could be worse. It could be raining.”

The forecast calls for a possibility of showers on Saturday.

Discussion from...

Following early loss, Aggie fans quickly turned from hopeful to fearful

12,317 Views | 5 Replies | Last: 2 yr ago by Agsuffering@bulaw
Detmersdislocatedshoulder
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As an Aggie fan I am not fearful and have not lost hope. We do need to play better and that time starts this week against state. Kick their butt and we are right back on the right track.
dcg4403
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AG
Not frustrated but disappointed per Fisher? He sure as hell looked frustrated during his post-game. Enough of the play on words, Fisher, either way your team is not performing to your standards and expectations you set for this season. I don't care how you want to describe that...just fix it before the wheels start falling off. It is starting to smell like a bit of that pesky Austin mold has made its way into our locker room.

I was disappointed Game 1 to 3. I am now immensely frustrated after Game 4 against Arkansas. And Fisher surw as hell looked very frustrated on the sidelines during that game. Just call a spade a spade.

I wont ever give up on the Ags. But I will absolutely reset expectations based on what I feel is strictly the downside of Jimbo Fisher. Clearly if Jimbo doesnt have a very good QB running the RPO....things get ugly quickly and Fisher doesnt seem to know how to flip the script. He needs to learn how to simplify his offense IMO under the current scenario. Too much youth, not enough experience and Fisher's offense is too cerebral.

Luckily MSU is a perfect matchup for us this coming week. QB that is not mobile. So great opportunity for Fisher, et al to make some drastic corrections and start tightening up all those loose lug nuts.
Sterling82
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In a year when Cincinnati has a real shot at the playoffs, the loss is devastating. There were extenuating circumstances to be sure but Fisher making the same strategic mistakes he did against CU doesn't leave me feeling very optimistic. If he's more interested in developing Calzada than winning, that mindset will continue. Saturday will be another test.
Aggieland12thMan
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AG
Well Olin, this frustration (not fear) needs a deeper look. Is it frustration with the Jimbo or the team? Absolutely not! At least not for me and those that I know. I think Jimbo has brought to A&M exactly what I expected him to bring, a change in culture. Then what is the source of this frustration? The frustration comes from two things. The first is injuries that have cost quality of play on the field. We have a wonderful defense, but subpar offense. This due to injuries and youth, is what it is! The second point of frustration is the overhype of our Aggies. A number 4 ranking gave us all a false sense of where our team's actual capability lay. This lead to false expectations and to a falsely elevated emotional investment into this year. If we had been unranked in the preseason, there would be no negative fan reaction to this loss or appearance of poor play quality on the field. I think the why the fan base is frustrated is more important than the frustration itself. Just sayin'
Agsuffering@bulaw
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The title does not match the article. Guessing the editor chose it, not OB. I realize editors need clicks. They ought to balance the desire for clicks with veracity.

Title "OB implies that Aggie Fans are acting irrationally"

Body "OB enumerates all the legitimate reasons for concern"
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