Last weekend’s “Game of the Century” actually lived up to its billing, with the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide holding off the feisty Texas A&M Aggies 49-42 at Kyle Field in College Station. While an offensive shootout was not necessarily expected, it’s certainly what fans got.
A&M quarterback and defending Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel had a huge day against the vaunted Alabama defense. Manziel had 464 yards passing and five touchdowns, while adding 98 rushing yards. It was the type of performance that no one had ever seen against a Nick Saban defense.
However, it also wasn’t enough as the Tide showed they can also put numbers on the board, especially with quarterback A.J. McCarron behind center. The two-time defending national champion quarterback threw for 334 yards, a career high, along with four touchdowns.
While an offensive explosion wasn’t expected in the A&M game last week, it would certainly not be a surprise if this week’s game against the SMU Mustangs was an old fashioned Texas shootout.
Both teams pride themselves on great offenses. Aggie head coach Kevin Sumlin can rely on Manziel and Mike Evans to continue to put up huge numbers. However, Sumlin would like it if his defense was doing better than giving up 36 points per game.
On the other sideline is a pair of gunslingers in SMU head coach June Jones and offensive coordinator Hal Mumme. Southeastern Conference fans will remember Mumme from his days as head coach of the Kentucky Wildcats, where he developed his “Air Raid” offense with Tim Couch as the quarterback.
SMU is still developing as an offense this season, averaging only 27 points per game. But it’s only a matter of time before Jones and Mumme get the offense cranked up. It would be a lot of fun if that happened this week against A&M.
Tim Letcher is a contributing writer for RantSports.com and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter @TimLetcher , on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.