The Aggies were greeted by a large number of fans outside the team’s football facility upon returning from Alabama. Freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel now finds himself in the thick of the Heisman Trophy race. The team also finds itself in position for a possible at-large bid to a BCS bowl. In short, it has been a raucous weekend for Texas A&M.
This week the Aggies play host to Sam Houston State. Head coach Kevin Sumlin and assistants met with the media on Tuesday to discuss this week’s opponent as well as other points.
Coach Kevin Sumlin
On the crowd at his office
“That was really neat. As Coach Beaty would say where he comes from that’s what they call a ‘neat deal.’ We got wind of it all of a sudden when we were on the plane and we were landing, somebody took their iPad and showed it to me and I said ‘Where is that?’ They said ‘That’s right outside of your office.’ I said,’Wow.’ That’s what we were talking about. One of the reasons I was excited to come back here – Texas A&M is such a unique and special place. The current students – it’s the only place in the country where 30 thousand stand the entire game. Getting back here, I don’t know how many people were there. It wasn’t early. It was 10 or 11 at night and they hung around, and our players appreciate that. As happy as we were in Tuscaloosa, as our players were, you could just see people here when we got back were just as happy and that’s great feeling.”
On the growth of Johnny Manziel
“We get to see him in practice. It’s kind of like your question about Kliff. There are a lot of plays we see in practice that you guys never see. If you think some of those we ran Saturday we kind of screwed up, you should see some out there about five o’clock tonight that never make it to the field. You get to see Johnny do some things. I think where he’s grown, as I said, was in the spring he was extremely careless with the football. He’d make a great play and then give it to the defense. He’s done a lot better job of handling the football and taking care of it, and still creating offense. He has continued to develop mechanically and that’s hard to do during the season. The greatest jumps in that position are between seasons. It’s hard as a young guy to get dramatically better week-to-week because of game plan, because of knowledge, because of all of those things and because of mechanics.”
On Kliff Kingsbury‘s development as a coach
“He’s continued to grow. I’ve said it a lot. He’s a really dedicated, hardworking guy. He’s one of the first guys – probably the first guy – in the office here every day. He’s always looking for new stuff, new wrinkles. He does a great job with the growth of all of the quarterbacks. There’s a lot that goes into the organization of the staff and there are different ways of doing things. I think he does a great job of utilizing our staff. We’ve got some guys in that room who have done some things at all levels. I have a tremendous amount of respect that they work together. But ultimately, you’ve got one guy that’s got to make some tough decisions. He’s grown through that. You can’t have a bigger stage than what we were on Saturday, or a bigger platform than what we’ve been on this year. “