Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#367 Auburn 50.5 vs.
#368 Texas A&M -4
Saturday, September 21, 2019 at 3:30pm EDT
Kyle Field, College Station
Written by Chris Kubala

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#367 Auburn University
#368 Texas A&M University
3-0
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35
37
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A pair of teams from the SEC West lock up on the field in the Lone Star State in a big-time college football matchup. The #8 Auburn Tigers are on the road as they make the trip to face the #17 Texas A&M Aggies Saturday afternoon. Auburn cruised to a 55-16 home win over Kent State at home last Saturday to maintain their perfect mark. On the flip side, Texas A&M bounced back from a loss to #1 Clemson as they obliterated Lamar by a 62-3 count at home last Saturday. The Aggies lead the all-time series between the teams this season 5-4 but the Tigers have won the last two meetings, including a 28-24 home win in the last meeting on November 3, 2018.

Auburn Tigers Try to Remain Unbeaten

Auburn rolled past Kent State to arrive for their first conference clash of the season with an unbeaten mark. The Tigers scored 27 unanswered points in the second and third quarters to pull away from a 14-10 advantage to turn the game into a rout. Auburn racked up a 633-321 edge in total offense in the contest while rolling up a 32-19 advantage in first downs. The Tigers controlled the clock by a 33:23 to 26:37 margin in the game while neither side committed a turnover. Auburn pounded Kent State for 467 yards and six scores on the ground: three different players cracked the century mark in the game.

The Tigers are 102nd in the nation in passing offense (183.3 yards per game) while they are 11th in rushing offense by averaging 281.7 yards per contest. Auburn stands 45th in the FBS in scoring offense as they put up an average of 35.3 points per game while the team stands 22nd in scoring defense by allowing 14.3 points per contest. Bo Nix is 44 of 84 passing for 545 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions while adding 79 yards plus a score on the ground. Joey Gatewood completed his lone pass for five yards while rushing for 124 yards and three scores. JaTarvious Whitlow leads the Tigers on the ground with 64 carries for 341 yards plus three scores while Kam Martin (21 carries, 114 yards, TD) and Shaun Shivers (17 carries, 108 yards) are effective options as well. Eli Stove leads the team with 16 grabs for 133 yards plus two scores. Will Hastings (seven receptions, 124 yards, TD) and Seth Williams (five catches, 81 yards, TD) are other targets in the passing game. Anders Carlson has hit all 11 extra-point tries and five of six field goal attempts with a long of 45 this season.

Auburn can run the ball but the Aggies have been tough against the run so far.

“Their run defense is very good,” said Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn. “What all stood out to me last year and this year is their run fits — I mean their linebackers know their gaps and their gap integrity on defense and run fits is very impressive. You know they do a good job of setting the edge, they do a good job on their back end and they mix up their coverages with their pressures and everything. Last year, they did a very good job against us. I think we were fortunate to win that game, the way we played offensively, if it wasn’t for the last two series.”

Texas A&M Aggies Look for Home Conference Victory

Texas A&M bounced back from their road loss to #1 Clemson in Death Valley as they took their frustrations out on Lamar. The Aggies now try to pick up a big win in conference play over a ranked opponent. Texas A&M was up 13-0 after the opening quarter, extended their edge to 27-0 at the half and never looked back. The Aggies crushed the Cardinals in total offense by a 633-197 margin, rolled up 35 first downs while allowing nine, and controlled the clock by a 34:19 to 25:41 margin. The big offensive numbers helped Texas A&M overcome turning the ball over twice while forcing just one takeaway.

On the season, the Aggies are 29th in the nation through the air as they average 292.7 yards per game: they are tied for 61st in rushing offense with 174 yards per contest. Texas A&M is 34th in the FBS in scoring offense with 37.7 points per game while they stand 13th in scoring defense by allowing 11.3 points per contest. Kellen Mond has completed 63 of 97 passes for 747 yards with five touchdowns against three interceptions: he adds 51 yards and two scores on the ground. Zach Calzada is eight of 17 for 106 yards with two touchdowns and no picks while James Foster is two of five for 25 yards. Isaiah Spiller leads the team with 28 carries for 246 yards plus two scores while Jashaun Corbin had 35 carries for 137 yards plus a score. Corbin was lost for the season with a hamstring injury suffered against Clemson on September 7. Jhamon Ausbon leads the team with 17 catches for 253 yards and two scores while Kendrick Rogers (13 receptions, 155 yards) and Quartney Davis (11 catches, 144 yards, TD) are also valuable targets. Seth Small has booted all 14 extra-point attempts in addition to five of five on field goal tries with a long of 32 this season.

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This one is going to be an interesting clash as Auburn has gotten by mainly via the ground game as Nix is struggling to hit 50 percent of his throws. The Tigers have plenty of power in the ground game but they’re facing an Aggies team that has given up only 83.7 yards per game on the ground to go with a 3.3 yards per carry average. By the same token, the Aggies have been good passing the ball with Mond but Auburn’s defense has held the opposition to 191.3 yards per game through the air with three touchdowns and two interceptions. The difference here may be the turnover factor: Auburn is a -2 in the takeaway/giveaway department while Texas A&M is even. Playing at home with a more experienced quarterback, you have to give Texas A&M the edge here.

Prediction: Texas A&M Aggies -4

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Auburn had their offensive struggles against Oregon in their season opener before rallying in the final seconds to get the victory. The Tigers then dispatched Tulane 24-6 before whipping Kent State. Auburn now has to go on the road for their first true road test of the season and it’s definitely going to be in a hostile environment. The Aggies are expected to get Quartney Davis back after he missed last week with a back injury, adding another proven receiver to the mix. Auburn has their work cut out for them here: can their freshman QB duo find a way to push them to victory?

The under is 6-1 in the Tigers’ last 7 games after allowing less than 100 yards rushing in their previous game, 5-1 in their last 6 games following a straight up win of more than 20 points and 4-1 in their last five in September. Texas A&M has seen the under go 4-0 in their last 4 games after allowing less than 20 points in their previous game, 4-0 in their last 4 games after allowing less than 275 total yards in their previous game and 5-1 in their last 6 games after allowing less than 170 yards passing in their previous game. Look for this one to be a defensive battle that ends up under the number.

Prediction: Under 47.5
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.