That hot seat underneath Kevin Sumlin might be sizzling now.
Texas A&M coughed up a 44-10 lead late in the third quarter to UCLA on Sunday night, losing 45-44 in an epic rally (or collapse, depending on your perspective).
Behind quarterback Josh Rosen, the Bruins scored on five consecutive possessions starting with 4:08 remaining in the third quarter.
Rosen completed 35 of 59 for 491 yards and four touchdowns, the last a 10-yard strike to Jordan Lasley with 43 seconds remaining before the winning extra point.
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Now questions will mount on Sumlin’s job security after he already entered the season as the Power 5 coach most likely to be fired first in an Awful Announcing survey of 18 college football media members.
Sumlin received six votes to top the list, followed coincidentally by UCLA’s Jim Mora with four.
The Coaches Hot Seat website had Sumlin atop its list late Sunday night after the loss.
Sumlin’s tenure has been marked by strong starts but weak finishes as the Aggies often have faded down the stretch. A&M started 6-0 last season but finished at 8-5, and started 5-0 in 2015 and ’14 before finishing 8-5.
They also have struggled at home in SEC play and have squandered sizable leads during games, but nothing like Sunday’s debacle.
Sumlin and the Aggies will somehow try to regroup after Sunday’s improbable loss. A&M dominated the line of scrimmage, rushing for 382 yards and holding UCLA to 70 yards on the ground.
But freshman quarterback Kellen Mond, who replaced redshirt freshman Nick Starkel after he sustained a foot injury, could not come up with any key completions as the pressure mounted late.
The Aggies’ 34-point lead and meltdown are even bigger than what the Houston Oilers experienced in the 1993 playoff loss against the Buffalo Bills, widely considered one of the greatest NFL comebacks of all time.
In that game, the Oilers were up 35-3 in the third quarter before the Bills stormed back to win 41-38 in overtime.
A&M’s loss capped a weekend of embarrassing defeats for several Texas schools.
Texas, which entered the season ranked No. 23, sputtered in Tom Herman’s debut in a 51-41 home loss to Maryland. And Baylor was stunned by FCS school Liberty 48-45 in Waco.