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Texas A&M Football: Aggies' 2022 Spring Preview

Jimbo Fisher, Texas A&M Aggies Football

Aggies head coach Jimbo Fisher has a quarterback competition to sort out and higher expectations to deal with in College Station this spring

The hype surrounding Texas A&M right now is legitimate, but the Aggies still have some things to prove in the SEC in 2022 and beyond. With Oklahoma and Texas getting set to enter the SEC in the coming years, Texas A&M is already building what they hope is an SEC and national title contender to be ready to give the Sooners and Longhorns a rude welcome. But they only need to focus on topping Alabama and Georgia in 2022, as the expectations are as high as they have been under Jimbo Fisher this coming season.

After a disappointing finish to the 2021 season and pulling in a top recruiting class, Texas A&M is opening spring football practices ready to set the tone for bigger and better results in 2022. Here are some key storylines to follow this spring in College Station.

5 Storylines to Watch During Texas A&M's Spring Practice

1. Who is QB1?

We may as well touch on this one right off the bat, but there is a quarterback competition this spring in College Station. After Zach Calzada transferred to Auburn, the question of who will be the starting quarterback for the Aggies has been a hot topic. The candidates for the job boil down to LSU transfer Max Johnson, Haynes King, and 5-star commit Conner Weigman.

Related: Early 2022 SEC QB Preview and Rankings

Weigman is clearly the long-term future in College Station, and Fisher knows it can sometimes pay not to wait to throw a hotshot freshman into the starting mix. But Johnson has experience competing in the SEC and could be a more reliable option for the short-term future. And King could still be the final answer, as his season was derailed last year due to an injury.

2. Aggies without Isaiah Spiller's successor this spring

Texas A&M had a monster season from Spiller in 2021, but he is now off to the NFL as one of the running backs to watch in the draft. The Aggies will also be without the services of Spiller's successor this spring as Devon Achane will not be participating in contact practices. Instead, Achane will be competing in track and field for the Aggies, without any threat to his expected starting role in the offense this spring.

Achane will be the guy running the majority of the time for the Aggies in the fall, but his absence allows others to get some work in, and this should bode well for the depth down the line. So this spring should feature players like Amari Daniels and Earnest Crownover getting some more work and refining their skills so they can be trusted on more in the fall if needed.

3. Aggies beefing up the offensive line

Texas A&M will have some things to figure out on the offensive line this spring so that the rest of the offense can flourish as expected in the fall. The good news is the Aggies have the bodies to make for one of the top offensive lines in the country even after losing some key pieces to the NFL this year.

Reuben Fatheree will cement one position along the line and Trey Zuhn should be another key anchor to protect the quarterback at the tackle positions. Texas A&M also has some big bodies coming in through the recruiting class to look forward to as well.

Related: Newcomers to Watch for the Aggies

4. Texas A&M working to improve pass coverage

Texas A&M knows one of its biggest weaknesses is giving up big passing plays, and it needs to improve in that area beginning this spring in order to be ready for some of the big-play receivers they will be facing in the fall.

The Aggies should be just fine in the secondary, but being able to track down passes and covering big-play receivers is an area to focus on improving this spring.

5. Living with higher expectations

After pulling the massive upset in the regular season of Alabama last year, making Jimbo Fisher the first former Nick Saban assistant to claim a win against the Crimson Tide icon (Kirby Smart later joined Fisher with a win in the recent national championship game, of course) and pulling in the nation's top recruiting class this year, the bar has been raised for Texas A&M. If the Aggies are going to continue the momentum, it has to begin with raising the bar in every aspect this spring.

Fisher is a national championship head coach and is handsomely paid by Texas A&M, with a bright future still ahead of him in College Station. But the stakes are high now and the pressure is on, especially after some comments from rival coaches suggesting Texas A&M may be doing things unfairly in the NIL era. It's put up or shut up time for the Aggies, and that has to be the message delivered this spring.

Podcast: Examining Returning Starters and Teams With the Most/Least Talent Returning for the 2022 Season

— Written by Kevin McGuire, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Follow him on Twitter @KevinOnCFB, on Instagram, and Like him on Facebook.