No. 7 Texas A&M readies for Mississippi St, Fitzgerald

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi State's Nick Fitzgerald had one of the most productive performances for a quarterback in SEC history last weekend.

But those 417 yards passing, 119 yards rushing and seven total touchdowns came with a bit of a caveat: The game was against lower-level Samford , which plays in the Football Championship Subdivision.

Still, it was a performance that got the attention of Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin.

"Anybody in this league — I don't care who you're playing — who can throw for 400 and rush for 100 as a quarterback who's that big, you'd better start preparing for all kinds of stuff," Sumlin said. "Because he can spin it, he can put it down and run it and he's a load when he runs."

No. 7 Texas A&M (7-1, 4-1 Southeastern Conference, No. 4 CFP) travels to face Mississippi State (3-5, 1-3) on Saturday. Sumlin said figuring out a way to at least slow down Fitzgerald is paramount.

The 6-foot-5, 230-pound Fitzgerald has been inconsistent this season, but has had some really good moments like the Samford game. Sumlin said he sees a quarterback who is improving quickly.

"It's another one of those deals where you get later in the season and quarterbacks who are young and inexperienced are starting to see more things and they're getting better," Sumlin said.

Texas A&M would seem to be better equipped than most when it comes to slowing down an imposing quarterback. The Aggies' formidable defensive line, which includes Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall, has combined for 18 quarterback hurries and 19 tackles for loss so far this season.

"Those guys can just cause havoc up front with a bunch of potential NFL players and possibly first rounders or first picks in the draft," Mullen said. "You see why they are one of the top teams in America."

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