There will be some attrition next season as we bid farewell to the Senior class. This senior class bought into what Sumlin and Co were preaching, and the results are tasty. This senior class goes out as winners and the group that helped shift the power to a little sliver of East Texas. That list gets longer and scarier if a few of the highly regarded Juniors jump to the NFL for first round picks (hard to blame them).
All that being said, who do you think will be the most missed on either side of the ball? Which metric will be most important; stats, heart, leadership, bama bangs, effort, etc?
WR - Ryan Swope - 64 Rec - 809 yds - 7 TDs - Clutch - Leader- Bama Bangs
There are not words to fully describe the impact that Ryan Swope had on this season. His leadership, his ball catching abilities in the clutch, taking huge hits and letting out roars of defiance in the face of tyranny. Swope will leave as the most productive WR to play for A&M, mainly because he brought his lunch pail to work, and was like another coach on the field, plus he is deceptively fast. All racism aside, Ryan is an amazing player and we will miss his ability to get open, catch the ball, and move the chains on third downs.
WR - Uzoma Nwachukwu - 23 Rec - 404 yds - 6 TDs
EZ had his struggles in the Maroon and White, but he came through in his senior season providing a spark for JFF when needed. Early in the season he was 4-4 on catch to TDs (or something close to that) and I was sad to see that streak broken. His 89 yd catch and run against SHSU was a thing of beauty. His best catch was in the endzone against SMU where he was falling backwards and just got one foot in for the score.
RB - Christine Michaels - 417 yds on 88 carries- 12 TDs - 8 Rec - 48 yds
CMike was in the doghouse all season it seems, but was great to see him run hard and fast through many holes on senior night. He ran angry and I will miss his style of running. I wish that he had gotten on board with this staff instead of fighting it (allegedly), but he got the job done close to the goal line. I don't think we will miss him from an impact standpoint because of how well Malena did this season, not to mention Bwill and Twill. I however, will always think of CMike running wild against Arkansas in 2011 (first half of course)
WR - Kenric McNeal - 19 Rec - 265 yds - 2 TDs
The senior was big all season on catching clutch balls when we needed a spark. Just seemed to move to space and wait on Johnny to locate him. Again, it will be hard letting go of so much talent on the Receiving corps, but knowing the talent coming in, it is not as a detriment. Still a solid player for the Ags.
TE - Michael Lamothe - 2 Rec - 17 yards - backfield blocker
Tight end's haven't received the attention many of us thought they could, or should in this offense. Hopefully Clear can bring about some wrinkles utilizing the tight ends. Lamothe played a hybrid FB role in blocking out of the backfield and provided some running room when our running game was slow out of the gate.
C - Patrick Lewis - QB of the Offensive Line - playing fast
Lewis will be missed because anytime you have a quarterback having to get used to another center can create issues. Hopefully all offseason that will get worked out. Lewis was good at playing fast by getting the team lined up and ready to go on the ball. Crucial to a KK coached game. Pat gets my vote for most missed next season. We will see how Mathews slides in there at Center, but Pat was instrumental in making our offense go.
DL - Spencer Nealy - 37 tackles (19 solo) - 6TFL - 2 sacks - 3 PBU - 2 QBH
I am almost choking up typing this one. Spencer took the DLine and carried it this season and was an absolute beast at times. This unit was supposed to be our biggest weakness going into the season, and thanks in large part to no99, it became one of the WC's strengths. Watching him tear through the Oline of Alabama was pure poetry. I have started letting arrows fly when I do something awesome. He has captured our hearts and we will miss his effort and comedic pictures. He gets my vote as the player we will miss the most on the defense. Sure the future is bright on the Dline with the youth of tomorrow for Kevin Sumlin, but his impact this season cannot be ignored.
DL - Jonathan Mathis - 22 tackles (9 solo) - 1 TFL - 1 Sack - 2 PBU
Mathis provided quality minutes up front like Nealy clogging holes and playing big. He will be missed for depth purposes as Snyder will have to play a lot of unproven talent.
LB - Sean Porter - 1 interception 60 Tackles (34 solo) - 5.5 TFL - 2.5 sacks - 1 FF - 1 FR - 4PBU - 3 QBH
Sean Porter was a mad man running all over the field. His lone interception was a huge statement against then unintercepted McCarron. It set the tone in the eventual upset of then no 1 Alabama. My favorite play of the season though was his sack against Mettenberger when he shot through the line untouched and creamed a cowering Mettenberger. I think he was the leader of the defense and we will miss his impact greatly (minus his coin flip calling abilities)
JStew was nails for us this year as a LB, a position that has been a weakness for us in the past seasons. He also remained healthy, so we didn't have to go to our depth (or lack thereof) giving the younger guys more time to learn not on the fly. The Tandem of LBs helped the resurgence of the Wrecking Crew and they will be missed. The future is bright for the LBing corps so we will see how big of an impact no11 was for the WC this year.
DB - Steven Terrell - 2 interceptions - 58 tackles (36 solo) - 4 TFL - 2 FF - 5PBU
Steven Terrell started all 12 games this season and helped shore up a secondary that was questionable at times. The safety position will be up in the air next season. Though there are others to step in, we will miss this veteren.
DB - Dustin Harris - 39 tackles (31 solo) - 1 TFL - 10 PBU - 2 FR - 434 yds PR - 1 TD
Dustin Harris grew into a very serviceable DB for the WC late in the season. When Dustin, scooped up the fumble against Alabama, it's like the switch flipped for the young man. He has been up and down returning punts, but for the most part caught the ball and made something out of nothing several times (NO NO NO OH GOD< WAIT YES YES OH). A young secondary awaits Snyder next season, so losing a valuable cog like Dustin will hurt. But the talent coming in should make the sting more bearable.
P- Ryan Epperson - 42.8 avg
Ryan turned into a consistent and serviceable punter for the Aggies, let's hope Kaiser is ready to go next season of the loss of Epperson could hurt us. In Polian I turst.
Like I said, these were the seniors that contributed this season, so who do you think will be the most missed? As I write this I realized texags radio just did a segment on this...oh well. Credit Aggieathletics.com and ESPN.com for stats.