Texas A&M Aggies Remain a Mystery
The Texas A&M Aggies have been dominant so far in 2014. But has their 4-0 record proven anything?
The Aggies opened the season on the road against the South Carolina Gamecocks. Kevin Sumlin named Kenny Hill as his starting quarterback for the season, and Hill surprised the Gamecocks, and maybe even the Aggies, with his stellar play. A South Carolina defense that is rebuilding after significant losses last season was torched by Hill and the Aggies in a 52-38 A&M victory.
Since that opening victory, A&M has rolled through three non-conference games, blasting Lamar (73-3), Rice (38-10) and SMU (58-6). Those games have shown that the Aggies can put points on the board against lesser opponents, but other than giving backups a chance to log time on the field, the wins didn’t prove who this A&M team really is.
This week, A&M faces the type of team that could give it problems. The Arkansas Razorbacks visit College Station on Saturday, bringing one of the nation’s best rushing offenses with them. Arkansas is currently eighth in the country, rushing for 324.5 yards per contest. The A&M defense has shown a propensity for giving up big plays in the run game, so this will be a challenge.
The key for Arkansas this weekend will be to control the clock and keep Hill and the explosive A&M offense off the field. If they can do that, the Razorbacks could hang around long enough in this game to make it interesting.
A&M must show that it can stop the run to stop Arkansas. The Aggies’ defense has allowed just under 125 rushing yards per game, but that statistic is misleading. In three of four games, A&M’s opponents fell behind early and were forced to pass the ball much more than normal in order to catch up. That has kept the rushing yardage given up by the Aggies lower than it might have been otherwise.
The offense is solid for A&M, but the defense is the key to winning this game and many more down the line this season.
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.
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