Will the Texas A&M Aggies take a big step forward in 2018? ESPN’s FPI seemingly predicts that the Aggies will perform about how they have been doing in year one under Jimbo Fisher.
Texas A&M went 7-6, the worst finish for the Aggies under Kevin Sumlin (who was fired before the team's Belk Bowl loss). The Aggies finished unranked, and tied for fourth in the SEC West. So will the Aggies rebound in 2018?
ESPN’s FPI has been updated to include projected win-loss records. The Aggies, who are the No. 19 ranked team per FPI, have a projected record of 7.4 wins and 4.7 losses.
A reminder on FPI:
The Football Power Index (FPI) is a measure of team strength that is meant to be the best predictor of a team’s performance going forward for the rest of the season. FPI represents how many points above or below average a team is. Projected results are based on 10,000 simulations of the rest of the season using FPI, results to date, and the remaining schedule. Ratings and projections update daily.
Basically, the formula suggests they will lose between four and five games before bowl season. A&M lost four games in Sumlin's second season, and then five for three years in a row before last season. FPI sees more of the same for Jimbo Fisher in year one.
Texas A&M is given no chance to run the table, and a 1-percent chance to win the conference. They’re playing against the 29th-hardest schedule in the country.
Here’s a look at the top 10 of ESPN’s FPI, right now. In the SEC, Alabama, Georgia, and Auburn all make the cut. Clemson is the No. 1 team heading into 2018.
ESPN has Texas A&M favored in seven games, including four in SEC play. They’re also only slight underdogs at South Carolina in mid-October.
The most surprising projection? Texas A&M is given a 65.2-percent chance to beat LSU in the final week of the season. LSU has absolutely dominated that series, winning every single game between the teams since the Aggies joined the SEC.