Top Newcomers to Watch in 2013

As Texas A&M enters what could be a historic season, the Aggies will be counting on a large incoming freshman class along with several redshirt freshmen and transfers to contribute immediately, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Aggie Websider's David Sandhop discusses the newcomers most likely to contribute.

1. RB Brandon Williams

The 5-star prospect from Brookshire had players and coaches buzzing during his transfer year. He has the entire package and will alternate with Ben Malena is getting a majority of snaps. Ball security has been an occasional issue in practice, and that is the only thing that can keep this dynamic talent from being a difference maker in 2013.

Contributor Confidence Factor 10.0


2. OL Germain Ifedi

When I met Germain at a recruiting function and shook his hand, I had never seen bigger paws in my life. He's big and powerful, and those meat hooks for hands will be able to control his opponent. In addition, I like his nice, wide base. With Ogbuehi moving outside, A&M won't miss a beat with Ifedi at the starting right guard spot.

Contributor Confidence Factor 10.0


3. LB Tommy Sanders

Sanders was a bit undersized in the spring, but reports from the offseason indicate he's put on some nice weight. He's as fast as any linebacker and is probably the team's best natural pass rusher.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.9


4. WR Jaquay Williams

He was still trying to figure out the offense as a mid-term enrollee, but in drills his talent is evident. I'll still say that he's the best natural receiver on the team and will be a star before he leaves Aggieland. I think you'll see big strides in his progress this fall.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.9


5. TE Cameron Clear

Clear was set to be a big contributor as a sophomore at Tennessee before some issues forced him to junior college. An incredible big athlete that looks like an offensive tackle, he is a good blocker that can slip out and catch a few balls.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.8


6. DL Isaiah Golden

Given the depth issues and last year's graduation of key interior defensive linemen, it's obvious that newcomers will be needed immediately. For Texas A&M to have a special season, a couple of these highly-touted linemen must not only contribute, but must be a playmaker in the middle. While any of the three incoming freshmen have the potential and physical skillset to be THAT guy, we're going with Golden who has a big lower body frame and low center of gravity mixed in with dynamic explosion off the ball.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.8


7. WR Ricky Seals-Jones

One of the highest profile recruits to sign with Texas A&M in years, Seals-Jones is a freak athlete. Rarely do you find a 6-foot-5, 220 lb. 18 year-old that can run a 4.41 forty. While the Aggies are well-stocked at the receiver position, Seals-Jones will find the field even if just as a red zone target. But with that 4.41 forty time, the coaching staff will also want to stretch the field with the big man. He just has to learn the system and get comfortable at this level. Once he does….sky is the limit.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.7


8. DL Justin Manning

Manning was the highest profile signee of the DL group primarily because he picked A&M over OU and Texas. Coming out of high school, he was as physically built like his teammates Golden and Hardreck Walker. I've heard he has also put on good weight this offseason with Black Death, and he probably has the best first step of the three. He's quick enough to shoot the gaps…not bad for a big man. He'll be able to give Coach Snyder a couple of series a game.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.6


9. S Kameron Miles

A lot of the talk this summer has focused on Jonathan Wiggins, but Kameron Miles was the more productive high school player and he has the perfect length and size for a safety at 6-foot-2, 215 lbs. With Floyd Raven expected to miss time, Miles will have a big opportunity to step in and show what he can do.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.4


10. LB Darian Claiborne

This is my wild card. Nobody is talking about Claiborne because he's not the biggest linebacker recruit at only 6-foot, 220 lbs. and LSU didn't give the Louisiana native much attention, but this kid is a speed athlete. He's the fastest LB recruit in this class, and in the offseason all-star game at Reliant Stadium several months ago, he showed great instincts with a great motor, and the ability to make a lot of plays. I saw an "it" factor there, so don't be surprised to start hearing coaches and pundits mention Claiborne's name in fall camp.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.4


11. DL Hardreck Walker

The least heralded of the three freshmen interior defensive linemen, Walker has actually excelled in the offseason program and is one of the strongest of the three and showing he's going to be a force to be reckoned with in the fall camp. He's well over 300 lbs. and carrying it well. I wouldn't be surprised to see all three earn relevant playing time in 2013.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.4


12. DE/LB Tyrone Taylor

Taylor is much bigger in his lower frame than his older brother which is why many see him eventually as a true defensive end even though he's been moved around early in his career. I agree with that assessment for now. I expect him to be back competing at the end spot this fall. I like what I've seen from him in practices and he continues to develop. I think he'll contribute in 2013.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.2


13. RB Tra Carson

The Oregon transfer gives the Aggies that true short-yardage physical back, but he's also flashed some nifty hands in practice and could be used another dimension to this expanding offensive attack. He does tend to run a little high, and that's something the staff is working with him on this year.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.1


14. WR Sebastian LaRue

He was one of the last freshman to make it to campus this summer, but early reports are promising and he was one of the top receivers in the prospect-rich state of California. With Kennedy, Williams, Holmes, and Tabuyo at the slot, competition will be stout but LaRue has as much or more physical skillsets as the other four at the position.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.1


15. CB Noel Ellis

It's a very crowded defensive backfield for a change, especially at cornerback. But with the pending suspension of Deshazor Everett, Ellis will have an opportunity and from all accounts this summer he's ready to jump on it. Many players believe he's been the best man cover guy in voluntary 7-on-7's this summer.

Contributor Confidence Factor 9.0


16. LB Reggie Chevis

Chevis had a solid spring for a mid-term enrollee thrown to the wolves. He has a big, physical frame and he seems to have an adequate sense for the ball in pursuit. He didn't do a lot to separate himself from the other younger linebackers in the spring, but given his size and physical stature, I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt and project he'll have a good fall camp and contribute.

Contributor Confidence Factor 8.8

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