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Texas Football predicts Texas A&M to go 9-3, College Station over A&M Consolidated in region final

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Dave Campbell’s Texas Football predicts Texas A&M to take a step up in 2022 but still fall short of 10 regular-season wins. Magazine writers also project College Station and A&M Consolidated to meet in the Class 5A Division I Region III final.

A&M is picked by the magazine to finish 9-3 with losses to Arkansas, Alabama and LSU. The Aggies are projected to finish third in the Southeastern Conference West behind the Crimson Tide and Ole Miss. The Aggies are the magazine’s third-ranked team in Texas behind Houston and Baylor, and check in at No. 11 in the national Top 25.

The headline for A&M’s team preview reads, “With top recruits in tow, Aggies want to strike sooner than later.” Texas Football writers say A&M’s ceiling is crashing the College Football Playoff, while its floor is another four-loss season. The Aggies went 8-4 in 2021.

A&M has eight players on Texas Football’s All-Texas teams, the most of any school. Antonio Johnson was named the state’s top defensive back by the magazine. A&M co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Tyler Santucci was named to Texas Football’s best 40 coaches under the age of 40.

The 2022 edition of the “bible of Texas football” has been sent out to magazine subscribers, but Texas Football officials said magazines won’t reach retailers until late July due to supply-chain shortages.

Consol and College Station will play each other in football this fall for the first time since 2017. Texas Football writers predict the Tigers and Cougars will meet twice this season with College Station winning the second matchup to advance to the 5A-I semifinals.

Magazine writers project the Cougars will win District 11-5A-I with the Tigers finishing second. College Station is No. 4 in the preseason 5A-I poll, while Consol checked in at No. 7. The Cougars host the Tigers on Oct. 28 in district play.

College Station lost in last year’s 5A-I state championship game to Katy Paetow, while Consol advanced to the third round of the 5A-II playoffs. The Tigers are moving up a division this year, and the Cougars are moving over to Region III.

“That mentality should serve the Cougars well — as should the return of the brilliant Marquise Collins in the backfield. Couple that with a number of defensive playmakers like Harrison Robinson and Anthony Tisdell, and we don’t expect C-Stat to skip a beat,” Texas Football’s Greg Tepper wrote. “But it’ll come in a different landscape this time around. Yes, the Cougars escaped the Region II fireworks factory, but it’s hardly a soft landing — crosstown rival A&M Consolidated, up from Division II; Manvel, whose lack of returning starters is more red herring than red flag; and Smithson Valley, another DII promotion that could be one of San Antonio’s best squads.”

College Station running back Collins was named Texas Football’s 5A Player of the Year in 2021. He is the magazine’s preseason offensive player of the year in 5A and district offensive MVP. Collins is also on the third team Super Team offense, alongside Consol offensive lineman Daniel Sill.

Bryan is projected to finish fifth in 12-6A. Rudder is also picked to finish fifth in 10-5A-II. District 12-6A is listed as one of three districts to watch at the 6A level as Bryan and its district foes are projected to “collide in an all-out battle royale.” Brenham is picked to finish third in 10-5A-II with Cubs linebacker Ricky Brown tabbed the district’s preseason defensive MVP.

St. Joseph is ranked 14th in the preseason private school 6-man poll. The Eagles are picked to win TAPPS 6-man District III-5. Eagles punter Marc Mishler is a preseason all-state selection. Allen Academy is projected to finish third in TAPPS 6-man District II-5. Rams defensive back Rusty Ly-McMurray is a preseason all-state selection. Brazos Christian is picked to win TAPPS Division 3 and BVCHEA is projected to finish third in TAIAO Division I.

Texas Football has high expectations for Franklin, but magazine writers don’t project the Lions to win back-to-back state titles after Franklin won its first in school history last season. The Lions, who are moving up a division this season, are ranked second in Texas Football’s preseason 3A-I poll behind Brock, who is projected to win the division’s state championship. Franklin is picked to win District 11-3A-I and top district foe Lorena in the Region III final.

Franklin’s Bryson Washington is on the third team Super Team defense as a utility player. Washington is the 3A preseason offensive player of the year and on the 3A preseason all-state team at running back.

“We are blessed with a very good skill group right now in Franklin and have a lot returning this year,” Franklin coach Mark Fannin told Texas Football. “We definitely have some holes to fill but each and every year these kids step up to the challenge. Numbers will be down with our lineman group but with the guys we have returning they will challenge these young kids every day to make them better.”

Madisonville defensive back Lorenzo Johnson was named District 11-4A-I’s preseason defensive MVP. The Mustangs are picked to finish third in the district. Navasota is projected to finish fourth in 12-4A-I and Caldwell is picked to finish sixth in 12-4A-II.

Cameron is ranked 20th in the 3A-I preseason poll and picked fourth in 11-3A-I with Rockdale projected to finish fifth.

Lexington checked in at No. 16 in the 3A-II preseason rankings and is picked to win 13-3A-II. Lexington linebacker Preston McMillan is the district’s preseason defensive MVP. Anderson-Shiro is projected to finish sixth in 12-3A-II.

Centerville is ranked seventh in the 2A-I preseason poll and picked to win 12-2A-I. Defensive lineman Zantayl Holley is on the 2A preseason all-state team. Linebacker Paxton Hancock is the district’s preseason defensive MVP. Normangee is predicted to finish third in 12-2A-I, and Leon is projected to finish sixth.

Hearne is ranked 21st in 2A-I and picked to win 13-2A-I. Eagles cornerback Keyshawn Langham, who doubles as their quarterback, is the district’s preseason defensive MVP. District 13-2A-I is listed as one of three districts to watch with magazine writers noting “there really is no clear favorite to win this district.”

Burton is ranked fifth in the 2A-II preseason poll and projected to win 14-2A-II and the Region IV title over Falls City, which has eliminated Burton in the Region IV final the last two seasons. Panthers tight end Carson Lauter is named the district’s preseason offensive MVP. Somerville is picked to finish fourth in 14-2A-II, and Snook is projected to finish fifth. Milano is picked to finish fourth in 13-2A-I and Iola is projected to finish fifth.

Bremond is ranked 13th in 2A-II and picked to finish second in 13-2A-II. Tigers quarterback Braylen Wortham is listed as a player to watch and the district’s preseason offensive MVP after his breakout freshman season in 2021.

Calvert checked in at No. 16 in the Class A-II preseason poll. The Trojans are projected to finish second in 11-A-II behind Oglesby and lose to Oglesby in the Region III final. Calvert wide receiver Kevondre Corona is a preseason all-state selection, and Antonio Porter is the district’s preseason defensive MVP. Dime Box is picked third in the district.

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