The College of Choke: Texas A&M only wrecks its own season, SEC visions withlatest collapse
Texas A&M boasts national championship caliber talent — and the gag reflex of Tony Romo.
In fact, the Aggies' roster might as well be dotted with a collection of Romos, players who seize up just when it looks like they're ready to break through. There's no other explanation. Not after blowing a 20-3 halftime lead to No. 5 Oklahoma State one Saturday and following it up by coughing away a 35-17 halftime advantage over No. 18 Arkansas the next.
Mike Sherman's team should be sizing up a run at the national title. Instead, it's trying to brush off "Gag 'Em Aggies" cracks after the latest fall-from-ahead 42-38 loss. Texas A&M has gone from the game-changing toast of college football to the sport's punch line in no time flat.
The fact that A&M held an over-the-top, joining-the-SEC party on campus in the week between these two collapses only makes the program look worse.
Texas A&M has gone from the game-changing toast of college football to the sport's punch line in no time flat.
That event wasn't Ryan Tannehill or any of the other Aggies' players fault. It was an administration, booster and fan thing, but that doesn't make it any less ridiculous. Let's celebrate — in the midst of throwing away a national title chance.
Make no mistake. That's absolutely what this Texas A&M team has done. In building up those huge leads against two good power teams — one a more than legit Top 10 team — the Aggies showed just how much talent is packed into their roster. Sherman's crew throttled Oklahoma State and Arkansas — and then started running away from its own shadow.
It's almost unfathomable to imagine racking up 404 yards of offense and five rushing touchdowns against a team in the first half and then struggling to get a lone field goal for the entire second half. That's exactly what A&M did at Jerry Jones' Cowboys Stadium Saturday though.
Still, the collapse of that "Wrecking Crew" defense might be even more stunning.
Sure, any program would feel the loss of Von Miller, the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft. But there's feeling it and then there's curling up into a little ball whenever the going gets tough. Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson ended up throwing for 510 yards in Romo's home. Bobby Petrino is an excellent offensive coach, but even he's not that good.
No one is. For the second straight week, this was more about what the Aggies didn't do rather than what their opponent did.
“We’ll have some heart-to-hearts this week, particularly on Monday, about which direction we’re going to go and make sure that what happened today doesn’t happen again,” Sherman said in his postgame press conference.
Does it really matter anymore? It sure doesn't nationally. The Aggies have taken themselves out of any discussion that means anything (on the field) in college football the year before their SEC jump.
Oh, the Aggies will still end up being the best team in Texas — but that designation means less than ever, particularly in the wake of Baylor and Robert Griffin III's heartbreaking loss to unranked Kansas State Saturday. A&M has too much talent to not win plenty of games — those big leads attest to that — and they'll brush aside a still flawed University of Texas team when they meet.
But after what could have been — what should have been — even a goodbye, good riddance Thanksgiving thumping of the Longhorns will not be enough. A&M had a team that should have contended for the national title. Who knows when Sherman will ever have another.