Texas A&M’s Kevin Sumlin tried to warn folks.
Even at SEC Media Days Texas A&M’s first-year coach told several reporters that if folks want to make his offense out to be a pass-crazy system, he’d be happy for them to do so. That’s because he likes to the run the football, too. Despite the big passing numbers at Houston, Sumlin’s offense does not ignore the run. And with a mobile quarterback like Johnny Manziel, the pass-run ratio might look a whole lot different than what most SEC fans and media members expected.
“You get the illusion that these guys are a passing team, but really they are not.”
In fact, in Saturday’s 20-17 loss to the Gators, the Aggies ran the ball 38 times and threw it just 31 times. Granted, Manziel — who Muschamp said Texas recruited to play safety — was a redshirt freshman making his first start. But it’s unlikely A&M will near Houston’s pass-run ratio of 682-to-420 at any point this season. Not with the Aggies’ deep stable or running backs and Manziel’s mobility.
Bobby Petrino’s offense at Arkansas was viewed as pass-happy, too. Certainly, the pass set up the run and no one can deny that. But a fast check of last year’s stats shows that the Razorbacks passed the ball 471 times and ran it 412. That’s balance (to keep the defense off-balance). Don’t be surprised if Texas A&M’s numbers at the end of this season more closely resemble Arkansas’ 2011 pass-run ratio than Houston’s 2011 ratio.
Sumlin tried to tell us that all summer.