Nick Starkel Has Surgery On Broken Ankle; Could Miss Season

Kevin Sumlin has pressure-cooker season ahead of him at Texas A&M

Now, after just one game, the Maroon and White are down a quarterback in Nick Starkel and defensive back in Donovan Wilson. And the new questions are about the quarterback going forward and whether what is surely a fragile defense has enough talent in the back end.

Before Rosen engineered a showstopping comeback for the Bruins, the Aggies had a 99.9 percent chance to win the game with 5:33 left in the third quarter, according to Bovada oddsmakers. Instead, the Aggies pounded the rock with conviction in the first half with Trayveon Williams leading the way. A fast start turned into a nightmare finish; in other words, you may as well have called the second half "November".

Assuming Starkel is out for the season, it's reasonable to wonder if his absence is more season changing and program changing for Texas A&M than QB Deondre Francois' knee injury is for Florida State.

It's arguable that A&M wouldn't have blown the lead had Starkel not gotten hurt.

This is an enormous blow to the Aggies, who were already reeling after suffering through one of the biggest meltdowns in college football history.

His replacement, four-star true freshman Kellen Mond, went a miserable 3-of-17 in Starkel's relief. Starkel returned to the sideline on crutches with his foot in a walking boot.

The staff had reasons for sticking with Mond, hoping he could use his legs and playmaking ability to keep moving the chains and grinding the clock. Instead, Mond was asked to drop straight back and throw, and he took a nine yard sack, making a 34-yard field goal attempt a 43-yard field goal attempt.

Four passing touchdowns in the fourth quarter from UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen lifted the Bruins over the Aggies 45-44.

Related news: