Five things to keep in mind as Spring Exercise begins

COLLEGE STATION — A new era has dawned at Texas A&M thanks to the addition of a veteran coach at former Atlanta Falcons, Arkansas and Louisville boss Bobby Petrino, who will lead the offense under his new boss Jimbo Fisher.

Spring practice begins Monday, and here are five things to watch in the run-up to the April 15 spring game at Kyle Field — or at least half of Kyle Field (more on that in a moment):

New dynamic

For the first time in more than two decades, Fisher won’t name any plays on his offense, or at least that’s the idea of ​​bringing Petrino, 62, on board from UNLV, where he just agreed to be offensive coordinator after being head coach at of Missouri State for three seasons.

Petrino, serving only as offensive coordinator for the first time in more than two decades, will begin installing his scoring plan this week. Basically, it’s been described as an adaptive approach that focuses on “just feeding the studs,” according to an ESPN analysis. That leads to the first player to watch spring practice: Conner Weigman.

All eyes on Conner Weigman

Fisher came in last spring with three quarterbacks competing for the job: Weigman, fresh from Bridgeland High, Haynes King and Max Johnson. Due to injuries and disability, Weigman, a five-star contender, started four games late in the season and threw eight touchdowns with no interceptions.

Overall, the Aggies under Fisher in 2022 were terrible on offense and ranked 101st out of 131 Football Bowl Subdivision programs in scoring (22.8 points per game), but that wasn’t down to Weigman, a latecomer trying , salvaging a 5-7 season.

King has moved to Georgia Tech and Johnson is the backup so this will be the first spring Weigman has lost the appearance and he has new eyes on his approach at Petrino.

Emerging line of defence

Signing top-flight defensemen has been Fisher’s greatest strength since arriving from Florida State six years ago, thanks to line coaches Terry Price and Elijah Robinson.

The defensive line is one of those positions that needs serious maturation, however, and even with a handful of five-star recruits, the Aggies were one of the nation’s worst defenses against the run last year, ranked 123rd nationally, as they conceded 209 yards per game on the floor.

This spring will be crucial for the continued growth of former Five Star companies Walter Nolen, Shemar Stewart, Shemar Turner, LT Overton and Gabriel Brownlow-Dindy.

personnel change

Fisher, entering his sixth season at A&M, hired running backs coach Marquel Blackwell from Mississippi to take the place of Tommie Robinson, whose contract was not renewed. Fisher also promoted Bryant Gross-Armiento from defensive analyst to assistant coach after linebacker coach Tyler Santucci left to become Duke’s defensive coordinator (A&M defensive coordinator DJ Durkin will now coach linebackers).

Dameyune Craig will switch from coaching quarterbacks to receivers, while James Coley will switch from receivers to tight ends. Fisher, who is trying to recover from a lost season that included a home loss to Appalachian State, will have many moving parts to fine-tune and adjust starting Monday — and that’s just down to his coaching staff.

About Kyle Field

A&M’s spring game to conclude practice on April 15 at 3:00 p.m. will be very different this year, and it’s sure to keep some fans away who don’t want to watch the football version of half-court basketball.

Thanks to construction on the south end zone stands as A&M adds suites that should be ready earlier this season, the Aggies will play their spring game on the north half of the field.

It’s a shame A&M can’t use any of the nearby College Station, A&M Consolidated, or Bryan High Schools for the game, but apparently that violates NCAA rules for a spring game.

In keeping with the Half Field spirit, A&M should make the game “make it take it” and “win by two”. At least the modded spring game is free for fans (as it has been for the most part) and concession stands will be open – halfway down the field.


Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button