AggieYell.com concludes its countdown to the start of the 2014 season with its 30 players in 30 days feature on the most important players to Texas A&M's success for the upcoming campaign with number 1, quarterback Kenny Hill.
Height/Weight: 6'1", 215
2013 Statistics: 16-22 for 189 yards and 1 TD passing; 37 yards rushing in 4 games
Why he tops the list: Because he's the starting quarterback on a team with a potentially explosive offense and replaces the greatest player in program history.
While a lot of people think following Johnny Manziel would be pressure in and of itself, Hill has already responded well to other tough situations this year. He rebounded from an arrest that cost him the final week of spring practice to win the starting job from Kyle Allen, the best quarterback in the nation in the 2014 recruiting class. Allen didn't play like a true freshman, either; he gave Hill all that he could handle, but the sophomore's consistency and command of the offense won out.
Running the A&M offense is something Hill is familiar with; he's been running essentially the same thing for the past four years, going back to his time running the show at Southlake Carroll. He knows the routes and isn't afraid to change the plays depending on the defenses, something that stood out in his favor with offensive coordinator Jake Spavital. He's also capable of running the football; while he's not going to put together highlight reel runs like Manziel did, he can put his head down and gain needed yardage if the situation calls for it.
For the past two seasons, the Aggies have had the most prolific offense in America. Manziel is gone, as is Mike Evans, but there's still a ton of talent all the skill positions and a strong offensive line. The success or failure of the offense -- and maybe the entire season -- will rest on how well Hill is able to utilize the weapons at his disposal.
No pressure, kid. Welcome to the job.