AM starts 2005 off with a bang

When Dennis Franchione was hired at Texas A&M, he told Aggie fans that he was going to be aggressive on the recruiting front and work hard to get the players in the Lone Star State to College Station. The Aggies are already off to a masterful start for 2004 with commitments from four four-star prospects.
But their success can also be seen in the Class of 2005.
The Aggies have landed a pledge from one of the state of Texas’ top junior-to-be prospects.
Michael Shumard, a 6-foot-5, 290-pound offensive tackle from Killeen (Texas) Harker Heights, committed to A&M for the Class of 2005, picking the Aggies over early interest from Texas and Ohio State.
“I went to the A&M four-day mini camp and then I went to the Texas one,” Shumard said. “At the A&M camp, I talked to coach Franchione a lot. He’s a very mild-mannered guy and is really down to earth. They then offered me a scholarship and I decided to go ahead and commit.”
Shumard, who has a 320-pound bench-press, 540-pound squat and a 5.0-second time in the 40-yard dash, was an all-district pick as a sophomore and is expected to be one of the state’s best in 2005. Also a track star with a 55-feet, 4 ½ inch shot-put best and a 136-feet best in the discuss, Shumard is an amazing athlete.
“I’m best at acknowledging what the defense puts in front of me,” Shumard said. “I always know where everybody is at. I’m good at running down defensive backs down field and going out there and making the big block in the right situation.”
But Shumard isn’t satisfied and has high expectations for this upcoming season.
“This year we’re going to run the ball about 90 percent of the time,” Shumard, a left tackle, said. “We’re going to run right behind me and my good friend at left guard. Last year, we were a strictly passing offense. We had Dominique (Zeigler) and we ran a run and gun style offense. It was a lot of shotgun passing and quarterback draws. We went three deep in the playoffs last year, but I always want to do better and we want to go even further.”
Shumard helped Zeigler earn player of the year honors in his district and helped pave the way for him to sign with Baylor this past February.
Shumard isn’t a Texas native and has moved around quite a bit with his father in the Army. They also lived in Alabama, Kentucky and Kansas, but he’s quickly found a home in Killeen and began to root for the Aggies.
“Ever since I moved to Texas, I’ve rooted for them,” he said.
And now it looks like he’s going to find another new home in College Station, joining an ever-growing group of blue-chippers that are attracted to Franchione’s recruiting style.