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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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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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June 16, 2024

Garrett: Worthy of being No. 1

Defensive+end+Myles+Garrett+recorded+32.5+sacks+over+his+college+career.

Defensive end Myles Garrett recorded 32.5 sacks over his college career.

Today is finally the day — Draft Day. Almost five months after the college season ended, we will know where many college football prospects will continue their careers. In February, Texas A&M had nine of its players showcase their talents at the 2017 NFL Combine.
One athlete in particular stood out: Junior defensive end Myles Garrett. For those who follow college football, it came as no surprise that Garrett would forego his senior season to enter the NFL Draft. Furthermore, when Garrett blew out his competition at the combine with his numbers and solidified his No. 1 overall status, mostly everyone expected it. 
Now, hours before NFL commissioner Roger Goodell calls out the first name in the 2017 draft class, there has been controversy surrounding whether or not Garrett deserves to be the first one to hear his name called. 
ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. said in a teleconference earlier this week that although there were times Garrett didn’t seem to give his 110 percent on every play, he is still the unanimous No. 1 pick, because after all, in a sport like football it is impossible to not get tired. 
“The knock would be that he varies the pace of his game and his effort.” Kiper Jr. said. “He would show you that. Remember the college game … both [Todd] McShay and I have talked about that a lot. You’ve got a lot of plays. You’re playing 90 to 100 plays you’ve got to take some plays where you pace yourself. It’s a marathon not a sprint. In the NFL, it’s a different ball game, he won’t have to worry about the stamina, the endurance and about pacing himself.”
Kiper Jr. defended Garrett’s junior year production due to an ankle injury.
“He wasn’t healthy all year,” Kiper Jr. said. “Myles Garrett is going No. 1. If he wants it bad enough, with his measurables and his talent and his athleticism he can be as good as he wants to be. That will determine what Myles Garrett is. Myles Garrett will determine that.”
Garrett, a three-year starter in the Southeastern Conference, which is regarded as the premiere standard in college football, was a menace on the field. As a starter, Garrett totaled 32.5 sacks, an impressive statistic considering the conference. Garrett also totaled 48.5 tackles for loss in his career with the Aggies. Those are numbers that you can’t ignore. 
Just a few days ago, Warren Sapp, an NFL Hall of Fame defensive tackle, said Garrett was lazy and didn’t deserve to be chosen first overall. Ever since Garrett burst on to the scene in 2014 he has had the attention of all the SEC coaches he has faced. In the two years following his breakout season, Garrett was often double teamed in efforts to try and contain him. 
Mark May, two-time super champion and offensive guard, said on ESPN’s Sportscenter that instead of trying to tear Garrett down Sapp should support him. 
“Don’t hate Warren, congratulate. This is a young player who should be the number one pick in the draft because he’s the best player in the draft. Don’t tear him down at this point. I’m happy for him. This kid has hustled works his tail off his entire college career, he deserves to be in this position, he’s earned this position. There’s a reason why all the coaches, scouts, player personnel guys, all the general managers basically all say in consensus he should be the number one overall pick — I think I should rely on those guys,” May said. 
It is undeniable — Garrett is the best player in the draft. He’s shown it time and time again. This past season alone, when ninth-ranked Tennessee traveled to College Station in the Aggies’ biggest home game of the season, Garrett — not at a 100 percent — was ready to play. He was there when it mattered the most in overtime and he was there when A&M needed him the most. Garrett proved in that game that he was willing to put the well-being and success of his team ahead of himself. 
After the Aggies lost to LSU on Thanksgiving night on what turned out to be Garrett’s final game at Kyle Field, he could’ve called it quits and declared for the NFL. Unlike Leonard Fournette and Christian McCaffrey, Garrett decided to once again put his team’s goals ahead of his own one last time and play in the Texas Bowl. Garrett is many things — a team player, a dinosaur-loving humanitarian — but the one thing he’s not is lazy. 
Later today, when Garrett’s name is called, the team who chooses him will be getting an elite player who puts the team’s interest before his own. That mindset is what wins you Super Bowls, and Garrett has that mentality.
Angel Franco is a telecommunication media studies sophomore and sports editor for The Battalion.

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