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Preseason computer rankings a bit of a surprise




ESPN uses its computers to try to predict each game’s season using the Football Power Index (FPI). FPI also generates weekly rankings over time as well. And, with more than 50 days until the first games start, the media outlet is now available updated FPI for the 2022 preseason.

To say that things are a bit strange is a small statement. While the top five teams are almost as expected of Alabama, Ohio State, Georgia, Clemson and Notre Dame, in that order, it will be even more interesting after that.

Texas is at No. 7 because the Longhorns are also given a 39.8 percent chance of winning the Big 12. The team has Quinn Ewers at quarterback, but he hasn’t passed a college pass to date. Texas also finished 5-7 a year ago, with a loss at home to Kansas. Horns really need to be improved but computers with it at No. 7 in the country is a bit strange.

SEC West schools are then in a bit of a strange order as well. After Alabama at the top, the next school in the ranking is LSU at No. 10. Now, the Tigers beat Texas A&M to a low year last season, but there are plenty of holes to fill. However, the more shocking team that is in front of the Aggies is Auburn. FPI has the Tigers at No. 11 in total.

Like A&M, Auburn has a quarterback fight going on. The winner is very good Zach Causeway, who led the A&M offense last season. While he played the game of his life in a win against Alabama, the rest of the season left a lot to be desired. Even if not all of him, the Aggies haven’t had a downfield passing game in most of the year. That’s a big reason the team fell short of expectations in the preseason. So, it seems strange that the Auburn team that Calzada will be leading this year will be ahead of A&M in FPI.

Speaking of A&M, the Aggies come in at No. 12 in total. That’s a little lower than most human votes but, if you’re just looking at a return stance, it might make little sense. Even if the quarterback position is expected to be upgraded by one of the trio Max Johnson, Haynes King or Conner Weigmanthe Aggies technically lost their starter to Calzada, who entered when King fell due to a season-ending injury in Game 2. The Aggies also lost their overhaul in Isaiah Playera two -time Mackey finalist in the tight end Jalen Wydermyer and an All-American offensive lineman Kenyon Green. On defense, DeMarvin Leal and Micheal Clemons line losses and Aron Hansford to the linebacker.

However, the Aggies brought back one of college football’s biggest gamebreakers to run back. Devon Achane, who has his turn in the spotlight as the main back. They have an offensive lineman who has garnered a lot of recognition in the preseason Layden Robinson as well as a pair of Freshman All-Americans from a year ago Reuben Amahan and Bryce Foster. In the wide receiver, five -star true freshman Evan Stewart got a lot of buzz in the spring after enrolling a semester early. The defensive line, while still young, had as much talent as any school in the country while linebacker. Edgerrin Cooper for big-time playmaker. The secondary has a ton of veterans with a lot of experience in the likes Antonio Johnson, Jaylon Jones, Myles Jones and Brian George.

As for its rivals, Texas A&M’s schedule can be tough. The Aggies played No. 1 Alabama and have a home nonconference game against No. 9 Miami. They also have a SEC West game against No. 10 LSU, no. 11 Auburn, no. 17 Ole Miss, no. 24 Mississippi State and No. 26 Arkansas for no easy division game this year. SEC East rivals Florida and South Carolina for being located in Nos. 29 and 45, respectively.

Texas A&M will have to come out and beat some good teams this year to prove it’s high on the rankings, but preseason FPI is a bit confusing. A&M is given a 0.0-percent chance of winning and only a 2-percent chance of winning the West and a 0.4-percent chance of winning the SEC. However, the Aggies have chips on their shoulders this year and will seek to prove the skeptics wrong.





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