Countdown 2007: AW Impact Player of the Year

We finally made it. Aggie Websider has ranked the 25 players who could make the biggest impact for the Aggies this year. These rankings are not necessarily based on talent, but rather, what contributions can be made by individuals to put Texas A&M back among the nation's elite programs. This year's Aggie Websider Impact Player of the Year, is QB Stephen McGee.

On November 12, 2005, Stephen McGee took over for an injured Reggie McNeal in the third quarter against Rhett Bomar's Oklahoma Sooners. He ran for 67 yards and was 0-for-6 through the air in the 36-30 loss (which is no longer a loss thanks to Bomar and Co.). But on that sunny afternoon in Norman, Okla., McGee took the hard hits and bounced back up, gaining the trust and confidence of his teammates, which McNeal never seemed to be able to do.

It's been his team ever since.

Last year, the ruthless competitor led the Aggies over Texas for the first time since 1999, even scoring the game-winning touchdown in the final minutes. With a healthy arm in 2007, McGee has a chance to take the Aggies to another level, as in Big 12 Championship, BCS Bowl level. That's why he's the 2007 Aggie Websider Impact Player of the Year.

What he's done so far

In 2005, McGee played the final five quarters of the season after McNeal went down with an injury, rushing for 175 yards on 34 carries (5.1 per carry) and completing 9-of-29 passes for 83 yards. For the season, McGee led the Aggies to 10 scoring opportunities on 19 drives and completed 24-of-53 passes for 283 yards, two touchdowns and one interception in eight games. He ran for 235 yards and two touchdowns on 43 carries (5.5 average) as well, setting the stage for things to come in 2006.

Last year, McGee threw for 2,295 yards and 12 touchdowns, going 194-of-313 through the air in 13 games. He threw just two interceptions in 313 attempts and led the nation in interception percentage, which A&M head coach Dennis Franchione really likes.

He ran for 666 yards and four touchdowns on 146 carries, and led the team in rushing against Army, Oklahoma State and Texas. He was one of a handful of dual-threat quarterbacks to finish with at least 2,200 yards passing and 600 yards rushing.

Why he's important

McGee is the heart and soul of this Aggie squad. He's the first person off the sideline to congratulate the defense after a tough stand and he's a guy that everyone knows they can depend on when he's on the field. He makes the smart choices, which isn't always sexy, but it gets the job done.

McGee will also enter the season with a healthy arm, which he never really had in 2006. Because of that, A&M coaches are hoping that he'll return to the high school quarterback who was 196-of-313 (62.6 pct.) for 3,579 yards and 47 touchdowns as a senior at Burnet High School.

McGee also brings a 5-1 record as a starter on the road, which is a stat that will come in handy in 2007 with the Aggies brutal road schedule.

If he's able to stretch the field vertically and force defensive coordinators to prepare for both an aerial and ground attack, the Aggie offense will be one of the best in the nation this year. The intangibles he brings to the team can't be overlooked either. He's been quoted on numerous occasions as saying he hates to lose more than he likes to win. With this year's offensive unit, and a much healthier arm, he should have a quite an enjoyable season.

2007 Aggie Websider Impact Players
1. Stephen McGee, QB
2. Mike Goodson, RB
3. Jorvorskie Lane, RB
4. Joseph "Red" Bryant, DT
5. Martellus Bennett, TE
6. Chris Harrington, DE
7. Danny Gorrer, CB
8. Jordan Pugh, X/LB
9. Mark Dodge, LB
10. Chris Alexander, FB
11. Jordan Peterson, DB
12. Devin Gregg, S
13. Alton Dixon, S
14. Misi Tupe, LB
15. Cyril Obiozor, DL
16. Cody Wallace, C
17. Matt Szymanski, PK
18. Earvin Taylor, WR
19. Kirk Elder, OL
20. Corey Clark, OL
21. Pierre Brown, WR
22. Chris Yoder, OL
23. Yemi Babalola, OL
24. Kerry Franks, WR/KR
25. Justin Brantly, P

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