The Texas A&M Aggies come in at number six on the AP poll released Monday. The Aggies were ranked seventh in the coaches poll, so it’s clear that Texas A&M has high expectations for 2022. Jimbo Fisher‘s squad started in the top 10 for back-to-back seasons, but the Aggies did not finish in the top 25 last year. The potential for this year’s team is high, but will the young players step up? Here are predictions for the ceiling and floor for Texas A&M in 2022-23.
Ceiling: 11-1 and Top 5 in AP Poll
This ceiling projection for the Aggies is similar to their performance in 2020. During the COVID season, Texas A&M has a consistent quarterback in Kellen Mond and more of a balanced offense. The only loss during the regular season was to Alabama, and that should be expected this year as well.
Obviously, it’s unlikely that Texas A&M wins the SEC West, but a second-place finish would put the Aggies in contention for a New Year’s Six Bowl. Either Haynes King or Max Johnson has to be the leader of the offense, and there can’t be too much uncertainty at the skill positions for A&M to win conference games.
The Aggies’ defense is bound to be one of the best in the SEC. New defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin will have to rise to the challenge, or Texas A&M might find it difficult to attain a 10-win season. High-level performance by both coaches and players is needed for the Aggies to make a push toward the playoff.
Floor: 8-4 and Out of AP Poll
The floor for this season would match Texas A&M’s record from last year. If the young talent doesn’t pan out, especially at receiver and defensive line, this record is definitely a possibility for the Aggies. Injuries to the best players such as Ainias Smith, Devon Achane, Demani Richardson, etc. could also hurt A&M’s chances.
The SEC West matchups have no guaranteed wins for any team outside of Alabama. Honestly, the Aggies could finish anywhere from second to seventh in the SEC West standings. Teams like Auburn and Ole Miss are expected to take a step back this season, but who really knows?
While there is not an expectation for a national championship this year for Texas A&M, the 12th man expects better than 8-4 from the Aggies. Fisher has been afforded all the necessary resources. He and his coaching staff are responsible for the improvement and whatever happens next.
Prediction: 9-3 and Top 20 in AP Poll
Typically, a team finishes with a record between their ceiling and floor projections. The same should be expected from the Aggies this year. It all comes down to the competition within the SEC West. As explained earlier, there’s no way to predict how these talented teams will perform. Home-field advantage is also a big factor, and Texas A&M needs to become more consistent before people can be confident that the Aggies are a 10-win team.
Overall, it’s important to remember that the AP Poll has no real effect on the final rankings or performance of any college football team. However, the AP Poll is important for the business side of college football, so the Texas A&M Aggies can use this as motivation to set a high standard for themselves and prove doubters wrong. Now, it’s up to Fisher and the Aggies to make a statement.