Commentary

Aggies will struggle in SEC

Facing a full SEC schedule will present major difficulties for Texas A&M

Updated: October 3, 2011, 2:33 PM ET
By Brian Fremeau | Football Outsiders
Mike ShermanAP Photo/Brandon WadeTexas A&M asked for the SEC, and now there's nowhere for Mike Sherman's team to run.

The Texas A&M Aggies could use some good news. A top-10 ranking and dreams of contending for a national championship went up in smoke in the last two weekends. Texas A&M blew three-score second-half leads in consecutive weeks against the Oklahoma State Cowboys and Arkansas Razorbacks to fall to 2-2 and the bottom of the Associated Press and USA Today polls.

Saturday's loss to the Razorbacks was an especially bitter pill to swallow. Not only are the Razorbacks longtime rivals of the Aggies -- dating back to the days of the old Southwest Conference -- but Arkansas is a future SEC rival as well. And on the heels of Texas A&M's official announcement last week that it will join the Southeastern Conference in 2012, the Aggies were hoping to make a statement that they were ready to be an immediate impact contender in the top conference in the country.

Now, one loss in 2011 doesn't seal the fate for Texas A&M in the SEC for years to come. But according to our Football Outsiders research based on several years of play-by-play and drive efficiency data, Texas A&M is expected to struggle once it joins the SEC.


To read more about the Aggies move to the SEC, including their projected win totals, sign up for ESPN Insider.

Brian Fremeau

ESPN Insider
• Has been a contributor to ESPN Insider and ESPN The Magazine since 2009
• Creator of the Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI), a measure of college football team efficiency
• Contributor to Football Outsiders and his own site, bcftoys.com