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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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What we learned: Texas A&M vs Louisiana-Monroe

Photo by Photo by Annie Lui

Graduate student fullback Cullen Gillespia and sophomore quarterback Kellen Mond celebrate a touchdown.

As Texas A&M hosted its second of three non-conference opponents, the Aggies were looking to fine-tune parts of its team as they prepare for their first road game of the season at No. 1 Alabama. Here’s what we learned from A&M vs ULM:
Cleaning up the game is key
While there were only 5 penalties for 55 yards against A&M, there were a lot of plays that made the Aggies miss out on major scoring opportunities. Three touchdowns were negated by penalty calls. A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher said sloppy play is something they can’t have moving forward.
“With these people we’re getting ready to play, we can’t have these penalties,” Fisher said. “It’s very disappointing. Right off the bat we had two or three penalties in the game… Any penalty is too many and we can’t have that and we’ve got to get that fixed.”
Running the ball
Earlier this week, Fisher said he and the coaching staff wanted to re-emphasize the run game after only rushing for 72 yards against Clemson.
A&M did just that against the Warhawks. In the first quarter alone, junior running back Trayveon Williams ran for 82 yards. While the run game wasn’t as explosive as it was against Northwestern State for the season opener, Fisher and the Aggies were able to get a rhythm going which complimented the passing game.
“We kind of struggled [to get the run game going] last week, so it was a key point for this week,” Williams said. “To be able to go out there and establish the run, take throws off of Kellen [Mond] and just see what the backs can do.”
A step in the right direction for Kellen Mond
The sophomore quarterback continued to show progress on the field — and Jimbo Fisher is noticing it. Mond competed 16 of 24 passing attempts for 210 yards and one touchdown against the Warhawks.
“It’s fun to watch him — the questions, [the] thoughts he has,” Fisher said. “Kellen right now, boy he’s growing.”
Defense will need to be their best from here on out
ULM is the second to last non-conference opponent A&M will face and the last one until UAB in late November. The Warhawks had a total of 328 yards on offense, which is something both Fisher and junior linebacker Tyrel Dodson said was not a good thing. Dodson emphasized the need to make sure the defensive unit is primed, healthy and ready to take on the SEC.
“We didn’t play like we were supposed to play,” Dodson said. “I’m upset. I’m also upset with myself for letting it happen as the leader of this defense. We’re going to go fix these things up and we are going to be ready to play against Alabama.”
Special teams was key
Fisher revealed that senior Daniel LaCamera has a small fracture in his foot and is expected to miss an extended period of time. In LaCamera’s absence, freshman Seth Small had to step in as the Aggies’ placekicker. Small nailed all six extra points and made both of A&M’s Field goals.
On the other side of the ball on special teams, senior Daylon Mack and Dodson combined for a blocked field goal attempt which resulted in an A&M touchdown.
Fisher said the special team’s unit was strong overall and he looks forward to seeing them improve throughout the rest of the season.
“Special teams did a tremendous job tonight,” Fisher said. “Getting the block… Seth, how about the way he stepped up tonight as a freshman? He hit those field goals, and I mean he hit them. He did a great job.”
Injury Report
There were several players out for Saturday’s game versus ULM. However, Fisher said he hopes to have some of them returning next week at Alabama. Sophomores Kendrick Rogers and Keldrick Carper were out of today’s game, but Fisher expects to have both ready for next week. Junior offensive lineman Erik McCoy was helped off the field but should be ready to go for Alabama.

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