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Texas A&M scouting report; FIU scouting report; prediction

Texas A M Johnson Football

Texas A&M scouting report

Led by quarterback Jerrod Johnson (left, 6-5, 245LB), the Aggies opened the season with wins over Stephen F. Austin (48-7) and Louisiana Tech (48-16). Johnson is an incredible athlete that can run and pass well.

Stats

Passing: 53-78 for  671 yards and 6 TDs

Rushing: 17 carries, 56 yards, 1 TD.

Johnson's 68 percent accuracy rating makes him a dangerous threat through the air. The Golden Panthers' secondary will need to adjust accordingly. This is not the Rutgers team FIU faced last weekend. Texas A&M has the capacity to move the ball in big chunks. Johnson has carved up the two defenses he has faced, torching SFA for 322 yards and LT for 349 yards and four touchdowns. 

Against Louisiana Tech, Johnson connected with WR Jeff Fuller (his favorite target) 10 times for 160 yards and a touchdown. On the ground, the Aggies have split carries between running backs Christine Michael and Cyrus Gray. In two games, Michael has 212 yards on 36 carries and two scores. Back up running back Gray has 29 attempts for 103 yards and a touchdown.

Defensive woes

The Aggies' defense is another story all together. After finishing 105th in total defense last season, Texas A&M decided to hire former Air Force defensive coordinator Tim DeRuyter. At Air Force, DeRuyter's defense was ranked 11th in the NCAA in total defense and seventh in interceptions. In their first two games, the Aggies defense has been effective. Linebacker Garrick Williams is leading the team with 16 total tackles. Defensive lineman Damontre Moore has 12 tackles, including three sacks for 19 yards. The Aggies have limited opponents to just 92 yards rushing.

FIU scouting report

Wesley10 FIUfoot MHS TMCCoach Mario Cristobal announced earlier this week that Wesley Carroll (left) will start the game at QB. As you might recall, Carroll and Wayne Younger split time against Rutgers. Cristobal said he might still use Younger if he feels Younger can bring a different look to the offense. I would not be surprised if Younger makes an appearance against Texas A&M.

The Aggies' defense has been tough against the run, but susceptible to the pass. Louisiana Tech had 208 yards passing against Texas A&M. The Panthers  will need  to be able to pass the ball well. It is important for the Panthers to get off to a fast start on Saturday. After a weeks worth of watching film, I feel the FIU offense will have a chance to move the ball against Texas A&M. It is imperative FIU limits the penalties and turnovers. Texas A&M might not be as forgiving as Rutgers was with the turnovers.

Look for the Panthers to try and find a big pass play down field. One of Louisiana Tech's touchdowns last week came on a long pass.

The true test for FIU will be stopping Johnson. Defensive coordinator Geoff Collins has his guys buying into his new defensive philosophies and so far it has paid off. Look for FIU to try and confuse Johnson with different defensive schemes. If FIU can limit Johnson, the Golden Panthers might just walk out of College Station with a win.

Prediction

The Golden Panthers travel to Texas as 28 point road underdogs this weekend. Out of FIU's first-four games, this one might be the toughest. The Aggies pack over 77,000 fans into Kyle Field and the place gets loud. I expect the Golden Panthers' inexperience playing in such a hostile environment will contribute offensive miscues. The Texas A&M offense will be limited at first by the Panthers' defense but after halftime the Aggies will find their rhythm and make the game out of reach. Texas A&M 31-14.

Even though I feel the Aggies will prevail, there is still the possibility FIU can catch Texas A&M off guard. The Aggies play a big conference game Sept. 30 at Oklahoma State and the look ahead effect might come into play here. The Aggies have already played two non-conference games and I suspect they are itching to play the Cowboys. If the Golden Panthers' defense can stun Johnson early, Texas A&M might not be able to recover. The Golden Panthers will need to turn this game into a defensive battle to win. FIU cannot win a shootout.

Justin Azpiazu

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77,000 is a low estimate. Listed capacity is over 83,000 and many times it has approached 89,000.

In order for a team like FIU to win in College Station, it would have to do what Arkansas State did to the worst A&M team in 20 years (2008): +5 turnover margin in addition to an anemic offense. They still only won 18-14.

31-15? Yeah thats not going to happen, FIU will be lucky to score and I see the aggies putting up atleast 50. Good luck FIU, your going to need it!!

Nice report Justin. La Tech is usually a pretty solid WAC program and they kept it tight for a while. FIU is an up and coming program so you're really not sure what you're going to get week-to-week.

My hope is we condolidate on last week's effort as we were clearly the better team. If Rutgers were to go to College Station, what would you expect? Probably a pretty good game. We should expect the same thing from our Panthers...no excuses.

Na there will be approximately 77k there as not as many people pack the stadium for non conference games. Last week against LA tech, we had 77,500 there. A couple of corrections- Damontre Moore is our back up OLB who is playing for our hurt All American Linebacker, Von Miller. Also, LA Tech scored one touchdown against us on a long pass play. The other one was on a 1 yard run that happened after we muffed a punt.

Speaking of, our biggest weakness is our special teams. If FIU has any shot of winning, it will be because our special teams flounders once again.

thanks for your imput A&M Student. justin.. how do you think FIU gets to 15? 5 fg's? TD 2 fg's and a safty? or 2 tds w/ 1 2 pt conversion... 15 in football is a hard # to reach lol

The Okie State game isn't until September 30th. Either way, there is little chance A&M is looking ahead.

Slow offensive starts vs. SFA and La Tech were overcome, especially in the second half of each game.

thanks for your imput A&M Student. justin.. how do you think FIU gets to 15? 5 fg's? TD 2 fg's and a safty? or 2 tds w/ 1 2 pt conversion... 15 in football is a hard # to reach lol

You're right, I changed it to 14. You just cost FIU a point.

31-14 would be a very impressive score in my opinion. As A&M Student pointed out. La Tech had a 1 yard TD run after we fumbled a punt on the 1 and it still took them 4 plays to get the TD. They also had a FG that was directly attributable to special teams. The only legit scoring drive was the 1 long TD which came during a stretch where our D seemed to be continuously on the field. Our defense looked very good forcing 4 turnovers while our special teams looked equally horrible giving up 3 of our 4 turnovers.

On offense I really can't see us slowing down below our 48 point average Johnson is a beast, voted big 12 pre-season offensive player of the year, and he has lived up to the hype. Note that his numbers (avg over 300 yrds through the air) has been achieved in just a little over 3qtrs a game. Never into the 2nd possession of the 4th. C-Mike and Gray are the best 1-2 RB punch in the Big 12 and our 3rd string guy would start for most of the Big 12 programs not named OU/OSU/KState who all have a great feature back. And you really don't even want to get me started on the WR corps .. they are sick and have gotten a ton of national play as well.

So ...yeah ... I really am just not feeling anything worse than 48 -10. OUr starting punt return should return which will limit our punt fumbles, and in game 3 I am looking to see our offense start to 'click' more early in the game, however, there has been talk about changing up our OL a little which may hold us back. I still look for us to come out and score on our first drive (something we haven't done all year)then never really look back.... sorry.

As an Aggie, a 31-14 win would be a nice, but not impressive for a team that needs a dominating game to prep itself for conference play. Aggies "should" be up and running. But, Ags need more reliable ground production to open up their potentially lethal aerial attack. Aggie defense is ... well, after several poor seasons let's just say we're a work in progress. The real problem is special teams ... and those type of problems can kill a good offense/defense. Aggies can't afford to give up turnovers and field position from poor special team play.

On the opposite side of the ball, FIU can't afford to give up the big play to JJ and Aggie offense. And, they can't allow a young, but spirited Aggie defense to get comfortable.

I agree 100% w/ score assessment, but like anything else in life, at game time its a crap shoot ... as we've seen since the beginning of the season, anybody can knock off anybody when the mojo is right.

One thing for sure, the bbq brisket will be cooking and the beer will be cold.

You Texas A&M fans are great, not like the chest pounders we've got down the street. This may very well get ugly, it wouldn't be the first time. But I hope those of you who are saying FIU shouldn't even get off the bus will come back here and man-up if the Panthers keep it close, maybe say within a couple of touchdowns. You listening Chris?

Blow out...

0-2

CJ, Justin is using the old Jimmy the Greek approach.

It will be very "load" at Kyle Field.

Dan, I think the lack of A&M run game (relatively speaking) is due to a very young offensive line. If those guys get better through the season, which they should, Christine Michael and Cyrus Gray could do some serious damage to opposing defenses and really open up the passing game.

I think FIU is a solid team and will keep it close for the first quarter and maybe the first half, but the crowd and quick rep offense is going to get to them and A&M pulls away in the second half as long as there's no major special teams miscues. 45-10 Aggies.

Hey Reality...didn't you say the same thing about the Rutgers game.

Get a LIFE! you know you can't spell scUM without um.

Nice write up, Justin. As for the game, I don't think we still know what to expect out of FIU, and the fact the game will be played at College Station will most likely have an effect on the game result as well.

Surprisingly, FIU totally dominated Rutgers, both offensively and defensively, in the game last week. Of course, the turnovers and horrible special teams play was the culprit in the loss, indeed. Now, we all know that TAMU's offense should be a lot better than Rutgers based on history, but also coming into this season, Rutgers' defense was supposed to be really good, definitely thought to be better than TAMU's coming into this season.

Here's hoping FIU goes over there to play hard, play smart, and play to win the game. I am looking for continued improvement in the overall scheme of things. I'm hoping for a lot closer game than most people believe. Let's see what we've got.

Go FIU!!!

Great interaction on this site, I'm looking forward to seeing the new FIU defense in person.

I really think this is the game the Aggies start clicking early though.

Way to many offensive weapons to cover.....Fuller, EZ, Ryan Swope, C Mike, C Gray, N Hicks, R Tannihill, .....

Aggie season ticket holder prediction: Ags 45 FIU 13 in an entertaining game.

Hope it's a good year FIU....after Sat's game of course.

Safe travels to any FIU students/alum/fans heading to College Station, TX, for the game. You should stop by some tailgates, as visitors are always welcome!!!

If our defense plays this Saturday like they did last, no way TAMU hangs 40 points on us. Justin's 31 is reasonable. But I'd say, expect the unexpected!

If any of you are coming to the game, let me give you the chance to see something you'll not see anywhere else. An hour and a half before the game, the Corps steps off from the "Quad" and marches to the stadium. It's pretty much what all of A&M used be like only 40 years ago, or so. Stand in the middle of the quad between the double sidewalks a little distance from the cannon they'll fire about 5 minutes before they begin. It will startle you, but it shouldn't be too bad, unless you're really close. You'll be with several hunderd ohters, so don't panic. Once the band passes by you, take off and go to the stadium, or go eat, or whatever.

You'll have a chance to talk to some of the cadets, and I will guarentee you that you'll love it. Don't worry about wearing your FIU stuff. You will be shwon the greatest respect you can imagine there. It is, after all, only a game. It's best to be there 15 minutes early, so if the game starts at 6, then be there about 4:15.

Hope you all have a safe trip, and more than that I hope neither team has any serious injuries.

We need Jackson and Jones in the DL rotation in this one to keep constant pressure Jerrod Johnson. Would love to have LaPorte this week as well at TE, but looks like he won't go. Times and Wright need touches on offense. The only way we win this game is if we win the turnover battle by at least 2. I'll be happy if we at least don't beat ourselves for once.

SouthPaw, if we can get Faucher and maybe even Delpe in there at TE that will be a huge help. Delpe is a really athletic big body at 6'4" or 6'5" and around 245 can be both a block and receiving threat.

Everybody has a chance. I would just like it if A&M started the game the way they have started the second half of the first two games. They came out very focused and took care of business. I don't know a thing about FIU but I know that the Aggies have some of the best offensive skill talent and depth in the country. Too bad A&M does not have the offensive line to match. The defense is better than before with better and better athletes.

After the class the T A&M fans have shown this week, once my Panthers have taken their lumps, next week I say GO AGGIES! Lol.

FIU Fan

I said Rutgers would be an L..what do you want to hear?..here comes another L..not sure what you need?..L..L..are you looking for comfort in a L to Rutgers?...L L..not sure what you need here...L

Very classy Texas A&M fans. Great, fun, respectful interaction with you guys. The reality of it is, that the other local fan bases here in Florida are mostly anything but classy.

Go FIU!!

Loving the Texas A&M fans! Classy and respectful.

People, don't pay attention to Reality. Let him be!

Way to show class Aggie fans! I just hope we have a good showing this week. It will be tough to play in front of 80k fans on the road. What I do like is upgrades on our lines. Hopefully we can establish a running game and eat clock. We can't have our defense on the field so long, if not, it may be a route. Go FIU!!!

Hello FIU... another Aggie here. First, kudos to Justin Azpiazu for a solid write-up on the Aggie team. Nicely done! A couple of additional points to the discussion:

Justin points out our new DC, Tim DeRuyter, and for good reason as he is awakening our heritage for tough defense. I've read elsewhwere about the new DC at FIU, Geoff Collins, and that he is turning things around for the Panthers defense as well... installing an attacking and confusing defense ala the NY Jets and Baltimore Ravens. It appears that FIU used that to extreme advantage against Rutgers, and kudos for that. But I don't think it will be as successful at Aggieland because DeRuyter employs a similar tactic! In essence, our Offense has been working against a blitzing, stunting, attacking defense since last spring. It gave them fits many times in spring and fall drills, but I think that experience will pay-off in a game like this. Jerod Johnson - JJ, as we call him - has a knack for busting those kinds of D's.

Secondly, if you go to the game be sure to wear your FIU gear. You will be treated with the greatest of respect, and regardless of results, head to the Dixie Chicken after the game. You won't have to buy your own beer all night long as Aggies will pick up the tab for you as their guest to the campus.

Have a safe trip to and from South Florida! Gig'em, Aggies!

+1 Fanatic

I have to add, Aggies fans, if you're wondering why we as FIU fans are overly appreciative of educated, easy-going well-spoken fans, just look around this site or even at a few of the posts here and you'll understand why you all are a breath of fresh air. We are a young program trying to learn to crawl and maybe make a little noise, dealing with local "fans" of the monolith down the street who want to keep a boot on our necks for fear of our potential. You guys represent the best of collegiate competition and sportsmanship. Thanks and have a great rest of your season.

Justin, are you or Adam going to fly to Texas to cover the team?

Adam is. I'm staying home.

I'll echo all the comments on the Aggie fans. Seeing the contrast between them and scUM fans that visit this board so clearly points out why scUM and their fans are the most hated group of thugs in college football.

I have to agree that Texas A&M fans are very classy.

OK, a pointer to Adam then: the press box WILL sway during the quarter changes! But don't worry, IT'S DESIGNED TO DO THAT! In fact, you will probably have a note waiting for you in the pressbox warning you of this ahead of time.

Why sway, you ask? A&M is known for many its traditions, and one of them is to sing the school song during the quarter changes. Towards the end of the song, we start singing "Saw Varsity's Horns Off...," which is a jab at our brethren in the state, the Texas Longhorns (who we call "tu" because their pretty small minded about things ;) ). Students, alumni, EVERYONE in the stands lock arms and legs around each other and start swaying back and forth during this part of the song. It's really cool to watch as you see across the field each row "sawing" in different directions and at different rhythms, and indeed it looks something like a saw. With 80,000 in the stands doing this, the stadium itself can't help but join in the fun.

But don't worry about it; after all, Texas A&M is an engineering school! We figured it out!

Gig'em, Aggies!


>dealing with local "fans" of the monolith down the street who want to keep a boot on our necks for fear of our potential.< - panther97

We feel your pain guys. We've got our own monolith just west of us a few miles. It's fun to knock those types off their high horse now and then, eh?

You guys be safe if you're coming to the game, and good luck with your season (after Saturday of course). {grin}

In terms of the score, this is the first season in a long time in which A&M has scored a non-offensive TD in consecutive games (Dustin Harris ran a pick back for a TD against SFA and followed that up by running a punt back for a TD against La. Tech). If we can make that trend continue (non-offensive TD in each game) it will definitely help our scoring average.

I don't know if it was mentioned already, but the former A&M school Prez (Elsa Murano) is an FIU Alum....why did she have such a short tenure ? I know Gene Stallings had something against ?

As an Aggie, it's nice to be referred to, for the most part, as "classy" fans. And again, for the most part, Aggie fans deserve the label. There are, however, allowable (even desirable) exceptions to the rule ... like when we play tt or tu. But, that is not the case this weekend, so we've got our "good neighbor" hats on.

I've been thinking upside down all week about this game ... thinking what a good FIU team can do against a better (no disrespect intended) Aggie team. And, I haven't come up with a damn thing! Beat the hell outta FIU!

Just funning with ya' now ... don't take that "beat the hell outta FIU" stuff seriously ... it's a yell that Aggies do to everybody we play in every sport. I mean if the Pope, God bless his soul, had a team and the Aggies played them, we'd be yelling "beat the hell outta the Big P"!

Last year, our college club traveled to Notre Dame to watch the Aggies take on the doomers in tennis. We did the "beat the hell outta ND" yell at the match and all 12 of the ND fans dropped thier tea and biscuits right then and there.

By the way, traveling to ND was not that big of a deal ... we live in NE Indiana so it was just an hour drive with a stop for beer and pretzels on way up (not bad for 90 miles).

Gig'em ya'll!

FIU will be 0-2. Sorry to break it to all you "die hard" fans and believers that desperately want them to win. Not this game. Not now. When is enough going to be enough??? It's time for a change!

Glad to see this much discussion.... sorry guys been busy all week. Had a deadline to meet, guess all that blogging finally caught up to me....lol
So, whopping? Noise? Crouds? 70k+.... have we forgotten we plaued 'bama, uf,etc .. of the starters only Caylin hasnt played in this environment...I dont think we have to worry about him.
Our OC beat michigan, our DC is a bad ass....the only question is our inexpirienced HC.... if he plays to win we will have a good showing..... if he concedes so that we dont "show" our plays for conference play than we're in trouble.
WC will be better a wild cat with ty will work.... looking forward to this game....give'em hell boys

You Aggie fans are great, all class! Hopefully we have a good game tomorrow.

Justin:
Thanks for the writeup - hope you enjoy the game.

FIU fans coming to College Station:
Welcome and enjoy the weekend!

If you guys end up winning:
Yes, we will whine and bi**h - but most of us will pat you on the back and buy you a beer anyway.
If we win:
Yes, we will talk a little sh*t (but not too much) - but most of us will pat you on the back and buy you a beer anyway.

I think you get the point...
We love football, we're passionate about it, but the majority of us try to remember that you're our guests.
Win or lose, we want you to have a great time and a safe trip.

AgAlum94

No offense to our worthy opponent, but Army will be looking to prove to the Aggie Nation that it has corrected the miscues of the last couple of weeks. Special teams will not be perfect, but much improved. The defense will attack and I believe we, the fans in the stands, will be be given a gift of some tremendous hits that will have us contemplating Wrecking Crew status. (We'll not make a declaration until after the Arky and OK Lite games, but we'll be wondering.) If FIU scores more than a field goal it will be in the fourth quarter when our younger guys are given a chance to practice. The offense will make a statement. 2 100 yard rushers, 2 100 yard recievers, over 625 yds offense. Score??? - 58-10

If FIU wants to win we better score more than 14 points. This will be the toughest game all year.

FIU is everything that UM has pretended to be all these years, except FIU has class. The real (public) university of Miami is just awakening.

Bigger, better, and badder than U.

The I is on the rise!

FIU has always hung with these OOC schools a lot longer than anyone expected. Even during the Don Strock years a lot of those losses were closer than the score indicated. If the past is a guide, FIU will hang with the Aggies for a half, maybe into the third quarter, before the floodgates open. If T A&M comes out of the gates with two quick scores things could deteriorate for us fast. Last week FIU's offense showed glimpses of moving the ball effectively but penalties killed us. The defense looks much improved with the time in the weight room helping our guys in the trenches control the line much more effectively. This, however, was against Rutgers, who, like Virginia Tech, may be suspect. We need to play a few more games before we know what we have. But our wide receivers are good and if WC has a good game we may be able to surprise the Aggies here and there.
Still hoping for the BIIIG shocker though! :-)

Any late news on a webcast or stream of the game?

Southpaw..get a clue...FIU is hasn't done dirt..let's worry about FAU first. I am so tired of the over hype of FIU...I graduated in 1996 anf the hight point was mens basketball vs Michigan..nothing has come close..im not sold on FIU coaches at all

Didn't see any info on a live blog...is there a live blog for tonight's game?

Cant wait to play FIU. I heard that that guy Wayne Younger is horrible. Cant wait till he gets in the second half and our defense gets many interceptions. GOOOOO AGGIEESSSSS!!!! 12th MAN BABY!!!

Panther97 said:"Here's hoping FIU goes over there to play hard, play smart, and play to win the game. ... I'm hoping for a lot closer game than most people believe. Let's see what we've got." "FIU will hang with the Aggies for a half, maybe into the third quarter" -- good prognosticating!
My prediction had been an 8-pt Aggie win. A&M's been shaky at times this season -- especially on turnovers; but wasn't expecting JJ's bad passes. I was impressed by FIU defense! (Think that JJ was also!)
Wish you guys well, both on and off the field. Hope all your fans travel back well.
-- Old Aggie fan.
[(1):LOL at the scUM remarks; new to me
(2)You got your poster Reality; we got one known on our boards as "Miller"--could they be the same guy?? :>)]

Hey Panthers, your team played one heck of a game. You've got every reason to be proud of them. They never quit and they never gave up, so don't any of you think of giving up on them. They even endured the noise of Kyle Field (which was greater than I've heard it in a long time).....In the end, I don't think the Twelfth Man and Kyle Field had a negative impact on your guys. Instead, they had a positive impact on the Aggies.

Thanks for a game that nearly gave me a heart attack.....I hope none of the rest of our oponents play with the same heart and drive as your guys did.

What a game! Congrats to FIU on that great showing. The Panther defense is AWESOME! Good luck the rest of the season, and hope we get a chance to see you guys again in the future.

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