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Texas A&M’s Fisher gives the Aggies reasons for being excited in 2022

Texas A&M head football coach Jimbo Fisher gave the Aggies plenty to look forward to and opponents reasons to be very prepared to face them during the 2022 season on the last day of Southeastern Conference Media Days July 21.

“This team has me really excited,” he said. “There’s so many competition battles. Everybody talks about quarterback, but there are a lot of them across the board with very talented guys. And when you have talent, that’s what creates greatness. On a daily basis, you have to play on a championship level or somebody takes your job. This is one of the times I think we have it across the board as much as we’ve had. There are some young guys in there, but it’s exciting to have them.”

Fisher went through various positions, including where he feels the strengths of the Aggies are right now as they turn their attention to fall training camp.

“In the spring I loved the development of our offensive and defensive lines,” he said. “The hard times and things we went through last year with injuries like having to play a true freshman center like Bryce Foster who’d never played center and missed half of camp because of an injury, playing Reuben Fatheree as a freshman right tackle blocking guys in this league like Will Anderson … high-quality people, which are tough things to do. I think that really turns into a strength for us this year. I really do. With Laydon (Robinson), and Trey Zuhn is a guy who would have played for us last year but was injured and had a tremendous spring. I really think our offensive line took tremendous steps in the spring and I really love what I saw, the physicality and size, but the knowledge.”

Fisher was equally enthusiastic about the defensive line.

“Even though we lost a lot of players, I really thought (the defensive linemen) did a great job in the spring,” he said. “Getting McKinnley Jackson back who played last year with a hurt shoulder the whole year knowing he’d have surgery at the end of the year is a difference maker. Isaiah Raikes, Shemar Turner moving him inside and different guys to me say (we’re going to be solid). Outside is Fadil Diggs, who I thought jumped out at spring for us once he got his opportunity. He was behind some really good guys, and we knew he was going to be a really good player. Anthony Lucas coming in early and plus all the other signees we have. I really think those groups are exciting.”

Fisher also talked about the receivers, adding the Aggies “took some strides.”

“We have to throw the ball better on offense,” he said. “I think that was a culmination of young linemen with starting a new quarterback who got injured and Zach (Calzada) having to go in and get situated for a couple of games and all the sudden, he took off. We had some receivers hurt. We had to get that part back in. We have to have some tight ends develop. Max Wright is a very good tight end coming back, Blake Smith, those guys, but then you have to develop some of those young guys. We have some really talented guys. Evan Stewart has jumped out at us as a true freshman at camp that brought some depth. Moose Muhammad really made some gains last year, so I’m really excited to see how that part of it goes.”

Fisher said he’s “anxious to see how those freshmen go, too” when talking about the secondary and all the experience those players gained the last several months.

One part of the 2021 season the coach believes will help the Aggies is the obstacles they faced and how they found answers.

“That we overcame some adversity early,” he said. “We had some adversity with the quarterback situation, with the offensive line situation, with receivers, with corners. It all happened right at the beginning of the year. We didn’t play as well, lost some games that we felt like we had a chance, we were right there to win. Then we played really well. The disappointing thing was we didn’t finish last year in the Ole Miss game and the LSU game, games that we could have won, they were great games. But we have to learn to finish. I think the maturity that we’ll gain from those situations are critical. I think the experience with the lines and the physicality of the lines of scrimmage I think that’s where you’re consistently competing. The teams that are very sound in the lines of scrimmage offensively and defensively tend to have a lot of success in this league. I’m very excited coming into this year.”

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