Aggressive Decision Making Hopefully a Trend for Texas A&M Football
I mentioned this in my turning points column as well, but I figured I’d put it here too, since it was rather significant to how things eventually turned out. The Aggies attempted four fourth down conversions throughout this game, tying the high water mark for Jimbo teams as head coach of Texas A&M football. What’s even more exciting than that is the fact that they actually converted on all four of them!
The Aggies’ troubles in short yardage—whether self-inflicted or a result of just plain getting blown up on the line—have been well-documented so far this season. It was encouraging to see the Ags display an ability to gain the tough one or two yards—and at any point on the field, too, as they knocked their way into the end zone on one short-yardage try.
Not only that, but as the clock ticked down towards zero in the first half, Jimbo used his timeouts and then went for more points. This was the type of decision that was lacking in both of the last two games for Texas A&M football (though, situationally, things were different in each of those: in this case, the offense was rolling where in those the offense was spinning its wheels). It benefitted them immediately; the Aggies scored a touchdown on a marvelous catch and run by Ainias Smith on the first play they ran after getting the ball back. It didn’t end there, however: Jimbo kept calling timeouts after the Gamecocks took possession once more, to force them into running more plays and therefore heightening the risk they would commit a turnover against this aggressive Aggie front.
Maybe this type of decision making portends a change in philosophy as regards this team. Maybe it’s just a one-off, and this stuff has always been situational. If I had to guess, I’d go with the latter. But these are the types of decisions that A&M fans have been asking for, and they paid off in a big way against the Gamecocks.