Texas A&M football may have an “easier” road to the playoff next year, so what could a starting lineup with only 2018 and 2019 recruits look like?
Anyone expecting Texas A&M football to take a leap forward in 2019 after the way they performed in Jimbo Fisher’s first season may end up being right even if the record doesn’t reflect it. There is a chance you’ll be able to make the case the 2019 team ends up better than 2018 despite finishing with a worse record. That’s how tough the 2019 schedule is.
The Ags could finish 8-5 and it would definitely be seen as a disappointment but not the end of the world. When there is a chance the team plays five Top 10 opponents, plus other in-conference opponents, it’s entirely possible to see five losses if you believe the team is not yet ready to contend for a title.
The Jimbo era never meant overnight contention. It’s not Kirby Smart taking over Georgia. Not only did Kevin Sumlin fall off in the last three recruiting classes of his tenure, but Fisher also runs a totally different offense and needs to recruit players who fit his scheme. It was always going to take time.
Having said that, the 2020 schedule could offer an easier path to the college football playoff. The Clemson game comes off the books. The Georgia road game is replaced by Vanderbilt at home. The hiccup comes by way of what I’ll call the “even year road gauntlet.” The Aggies play Alabama, Mississippi State, and Auburn all away from home every other year.
So, with that in mind, I got to thinking what a potential starting lineup could look like by next season’s Week 1. Obviously several juniors and redshirt sophomores could come back next year and this would look a lot different, but I wanted to see what a Jimbo-recruit-only lineup may look like. The following is a full starting lineup using only recruits from the 2018 and 2019 classes.
K – Seth Small – 3-star 2018 – No. 11 kicker
P – Alan Guerrieri – No rank
Seth Small got some playing time with Daniel LaCamera’s injury this year and now has valuable experience. The Aggies haven’t recruited a punter in each of the last two classes but did get Guerrieri as a walk-on. He is the son of our legendary women’s soccer coach G Guerrieri.