I post less these days but this needs to be responded to.
The answer is "no."
Texas A&M was not even #2 in the Big XII. In fact, there were questions as to whether or not Baylor would start surpassing them. So let's pump the breaks on the Aggies after one good year.
No one can deny that Sumlin was an outstanding hire. No one can deny that Manziel is a fantastic QB. No one can deny that A&M had an outstanding season. But you also cannot deny this: A&M's 2012 season had a bit of "catching lightning in a bottle" to it.
First, A&M was remarkably injury free in 2012. A&M has no where near the depth as Bama and LSU. Can you imagine what a disaster last year would have been if A&M lost 3 of their starting OLs to injury and personal issues? Staying healthy was a big part of their 2012 success.
Relatedly, because they lack depth, the loss of Luke Joeckel and C Patrick Lewis will hurt. Getting Matthews back is big for them. But Matthews is no Joeckel. Manziel will not have as much time to run around and do his thing next year. Plus Manziel loses weapons Christine Michael and Ryan Swope on offense. Sure, they have RSJ coming in and Mike Evans is a stud, but I expect the 2013 Aggie offense to take a step back, even assuming they stay remarkably healthy again. If they have injuries (and the law of averages says that's likely), it could be a big step back.
One defense, let's be honest, they weren't that good (ask La Tech). They have a decent secondary returning but they lose their top four tacklers. And from what I saw, with the exception of DeVante Harris (who is REAL good), they are losing their only two high round NFL prospects this year in Porter and Moore. Yes, the same can be said for LSU, but LSU started with a better unit and has more depth.
As for their "historic" 11 win season, they certainly benefitted from Auburn and Arkansas sucking and Ole Miss and Miss State being mediocre. We did too, of course. After a tough first quarter, we figured them out and dominated them. They caught Alabama just right--the week after we played them in an epic, physically and emotionally draining game. Nice win, but it was the perfect set up. And they waxed an Oklahoma team who, let's be honest, wasn't even in Notre Dame's league. So a real nice perfectly timed win against Bama and a blowout of a vastly overrated Oklahoma team, with losses to LSU and Florida. That's really it. We had an almost identical season--beat South Carolina and Aggie; lost to Florida and Bama(except we didn't show up for the Clemson game)--and our fans are disappointed. Aggie's "historic" season was only marginally better than our "disappointment."
On the flip side, next year Texas A&M has a joke of a schedule. Their non-conference schedule is Rice, Sam Houston State, SMU and New Mexico. They avoid Georgia/Florida/South Carolina as East opponents. So barring massive injuries, they will go 9-3 at a minimum.
I'm a realist. LSU has lost a ton of talent. But I'm also a realist about the immense talent and depth we have. Another top 5 recruiting class coming in. Sure, Aggie has a good class too (all 31 of them), but 3 of LSU's 4 most recent classes were ranked in the top 10. That's only true of this year's Aggie class. LSU will come into 2013 young, talented and with lots of question marks and be ranked lower than they should be. Aggie will come in with Johnny Manziel and a favorable schedule and be overrated. But I will not be surprised if LSU has a pleasantly surprising 2013 and Aggie comes back down to earth. And I certainly believe that beyond next year, we are in a much better position than Aggie.
This post was edited on 1/24 at 12:22 pm