Texas A&M Football: 4 Best Moments of 2013

Michael Taglienti@@miketag98Featured ColumnistDecember 29, 2013

Texas A&M Football: 4 Best Moments of 2013

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    The Texas A&M football team had a somewhat disappointing regular season with an 8-4 record after they began the season ranked in the Top 10. The season did produce a few tremendous moments that Aggie fans will remember for a long time. 

    The 2013 season was a transition year for the Texas A&M program. The Aggies' inaugural season in the Southeastern Conference in 2012 featured a senior-laden defense that helped lead the team to an 11-2 record. 

    In 2013, those seniors graduated, and the Aggies defense struggled. The 2013 team featured a lot of youth as head coach Kevin Sumlin and his staff have focused on stocking the roster with talent, positioning the Aggies for a bright future in the SEC.  

    This is a look at the brightest moments of the Aggies' 2013 season. 

Mike Evans Breaks Out Against Alabama

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    The 2013 season was a breakout year for Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans. He had a tremendous freshman season in 2012 with 82 receptions for 1,105 yards and five touchdowns. 

    His tremendous year went relatively unnoticed nationally, while Johnny Manziel, Luke Joeckel and Damontre Moore caught the attention of the national media.

    The Aggies' game against Alabama in 2013 changed all of that. 

    Evans caught seven passes for 279 yards and a touchdown against the Crimson Tide. He went up against the No. 1 team in the nation and was simply unstoppable. 

    The Alabama game kicked off an All-American season for Evans. He finished the regular season with 65 receptions for 1,322 yards and 12 touchdowns. 

    Evans is the Aggies' fifth player to earn All-American honors since head coach Kevin Sumlin arrived on campus. It all started with his tremendous game against Alabama. 

Manziel Ends the Home Schedule in Style

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    After the Aggies' 51-41 victory over Mississippi State, Johnny Manziel ran into the stands and joined the fans in celebrating what was likely his last win at Texas A&M. It was a spontaneous moment of joy between a fanbase and its quarterback.

    Manziel has become a hero in his two short years on campus. He became the first freshman ever to win a Heisman, and in the process, he instantly became an Aggie legend.  

    Manziel has had his fair share of negative publicity off the field, but he remains beloved in Aggieland. His celebration with the fans in the stands was a fitting way to end his time on Kyle Field. 

Manziel Lights Up Alabama Again

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    There were college football fans who insisted that SEC defenses would figure out Johnny Manziel in his second season in the league. Manziel quashed any thoughts of defenses catching up to him during a dynamic performance against Alabama. 

    Manziel passed for 464 yards with five touchdowns and rushed for 98 yards as the Aggies offense produced 628 total yards. The total yardage was a record for any team against Alabama. 

    Manziel's performance reminded the college football world that he truly is the best football player in the country. Injuries limited his effectiveness later in the season, but his performance against the Tide showed how much he had grown as a passer during the offseason. 

Defense Shows Up for the Vanderbilt Game

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    The Texas A&M defense was one of the worst in the nation in 2013. For one game, it looked like a competent defense as it limited Vanderbilt to 24 points in a blowout victory. 

    The Aggies defense forced three interceptions and registered seven sacks in A&M's 56-24 win. Because of injuries, Vanderbilt was forced to start backup quarterback Patton Robinette. 

    Robinette struggled against the Aggies pass rush and was eventually replaced by Josh Grady. The Aggies limited Vanderbilt to 329 total yards on the day. 

    Vanderbilt finished the season 8-4 and qualified for a bowl game. The Aggies' win over the Commodores was a quality win that displayed what this defense can do when everyone is on the right page. 

    Aggies fans have to hope it is a sign of things to come in the future.