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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

5 takeaways from A&M’s win against Massachusetts

Photo by Ishika Samant

Junior DB Jaylon Jones (17) celebrates with sophomore LB Edgerrin Cooper (45) after recieving a fumble during a game against UMass on Saturday, Nov. 19 at Kyle Field (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)

Texas A&M welcomed Massachusetts to Kyle Field for its Senior Day, hoping to claim a much-needed victory against the struggling Minutemen. Utilizing aggressive defensive tactics and dominating the field offensively, the team was able to successfully conclude their streak of losses, ending the game with a score of 20-3.
Here are our takeaways from the game:
Rain can’t wash away the memories, but it can snap a six game losing streak
Despite being plagued with losses, injuries and illnesses, the Aggies were finally successful in adding another win to their record against Massachusetts. Despite the team’s loss of bowl contention and the dwindling spirit of Aggie fans, the cold and cloudy gameday brought a metaphorical glimmer of light back into the locker room.
“It feels good – slowly creeping out of the dark hole,” sophomore linebacker Edgerrin Cooper said.
In the direct aftermath of the losing streak, the team hopes to use the Massachusetts win to bolster its morale and develop a winning streak instead – aiming to finish the season by defeating LSU next Saturday on Nov. 26.
An early game requires an early start
The idea of momentum is echoed throughout every corner of the sport of football, and a key characteristic throughout A&M’s six game losing streak was the fact that the team was unable to gain or maintain the momentum needed to best its former opponents. Against UMass, however, the vital mix of continuous defensive aggression and early scoring proved to be the key to success for the maroon and white.
With sophomore kicker Randy Bond giving the Aggies a 3-0 lead with a field goal in the first quarter, the team was able to secure the momentum quickly – providing the defense with a lead to protect and the offense with a lead to add to. Though the Minutemen were able to tie the game with a field goal in the second, Bond’s success instilled a sense of confidence and control into the team, allowing them to maintain the momentum of the game and use it to their advantage.
Weigman’s Wheels
Three starts later, freshman quarterback Conner Weigman was finally able to grab his first win of the season with an impressive showing of his athletic ability. While his 11-for-19 completion rate, 191 yards and one touchdown were definitely crucial components in the teams battle for victory, Weigman’s unique ability to run the ball was an incredibly useful tactic throughout the game.
“He did a great job with his legs,” A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said.
Ending the game with 66 rushing yards, Weigman’s speed and agility kept the Aggies afloat and provided them with ample opportunities to widen the deficit throughout the sixty minutes of play.
“I thought he did a really nice job on that in the game – making good decisions on that, getting what he could and getting down,” Fisher said.
Offense was (somewhat) ready to play today
While Weigman’s aforementioned skills should be dutifully noted, it is imperative to mention the key role of the other offensive players on the field with him. Sophomore wide receiver Moose Muhammad III played an integral role in A&M’s dominant receiving game, in which the team finished the game with 191 yards (75 being from Muhammad) compared to Massachusetts’ 55. Senior wide receiver Jalen Preston also put on a show of his offensive ability, with 20 receiving yards and 58 yards on a kick return.
However, a mix of player errors and rain-soaked, slippery conditions resulted in another challenge for the maroon and white, who fumbled four times – three of which resulted in a turnover.
“No matter what – you have to hold onto the football,” Fisher said. “That was the disappointing thing about it.”
Though the team was able to maintain control, the turnovers were unnecessary pieces within the team’s offensive puzzle.
Win is a win, no matter how uneventful the game
The long awaited end of the six game losing streak was celebrated by the handful of Aggie fans that chose to stay to the end of the fourth quarter, persevering through the rain and the colorless performance. The team finished off the win to the view of towels being waved weakly and poncho-clad onlookers quickly filing out of the stands – a fittingly anticlimactic end to a disappointing streak.
Against a 1-9 Massachusetts team, the win should have and could have been easier to acquire. With the lackluster performance and absence of urgency, there was not much to celebrate other than the end of a dark time for the Fightin’ Farmers.
“It’s a blessing to get a win,” junior offensive lineman Layden Robinson said. “We just didn’t get the win the way we wanted to get the win.”

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