September 3 (Sunday), Pasadena, California - 7:30 p.m.
The Aggies kicked off the 2016 season against the UCLA Bruins in College Station. It was a close contest from wire to wire. Trevor Knight took a fourth down goal line carry over left guard for the game winning touchdown in overtime. Knight has since moved on to the NFL which raises the question: who lines up at quarterback against UCLA?
A starter will be named sometime this fall. Each of the three options brings something unique to the table. The somewhat incumbent is senior Jake Hubenak. He filled in for Knight as a backup last season and has the obvious edge in experience. Nick Starkel‘s arm has been spoken of highly. Kellen Mond’s scrambling ability brings back memories of another former scrambler, Johnny Manziel.
UCLA will have to replace leading tackler Jayon Brown as well as first round pick Takkarist McKinley. This team didn’t fare well last year, finishing 4-8. It’s worth noting that most of that was without the help of quarterback Josh Rosen.
Rosen will be in the mix for an early round draft pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, but whether or not he can figure out the Aggie secondary remains to be seen. His only touchdown in last year’s contest came on an underthrown ball where a defender was tangled up with his receiver and fell down.
Kevin Sumlin is 4-1 in opening week games at Texas A&M. His only loss came by three points in his first game against Florida with a redshirt freshman quarterback. November has been a problem, but Sumlin always finds a way to win in September. The edge goes to the Aggies in this one.
Texas A&M 31 – UCLA 27
Season Record: 1-0