Texas A&M (6-0, 4-0) at Alabama (7-0, 4-0)
When: Saturday, October 22nd 2016
Where: Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL
Time: 3:30 ET | TV: CBS
The Alabama Crimson tide will begin a stretch of home games to close out the regular season when they host the undefeated Texas A&M Aggies on Saturday afternoon. Alabama will play four of their final five games at Bryant-Denny Stadium with the lone road game at LSU. The Tide have won 19 consecutive games overall and 11 straight over ranked opponents. They went on the road last week and completely dominated then No. 11 Tennessee 49-10. Alabama has scored an amazing 11 non-offensive touchdowns (eight on defense, three on punt returns) and the hard-to-please Nick Saban had to acknowledge that his team played well. “Well, after watching the last game, we probably approached playing the most complete game all year,” Saban said at a press conference. Freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts has accounted for 17 touchdowns (nine passing, eight rushing) while passing for 1,385 yards and rushing for 428. Sophomore running back Damien Harris (572 yards) averages 8.3 yards per carry while sophomore WR Calvin Ridley has 39 receptions for 477 yards and four touchdowns. The defense, which is ranked number one against the run (64.6), is led by senior defensive end Jonathan Allen, who has five sacks to raise his career total to 23.
Texas A&M comes in with the top-ranked offense in the SEC (532.8 yards), but will be tested for sure on Saturday. The Aggies average an incredible 274.3 yards a game on the ground with Trayveon Williams leading the way. The freshman running back has an SEC-leading 704 rushing yards to go along with his five touchdowns, while averaging 8.6 yards a carry. Quarterback Travis Knight has been effective as both a runner (502 yards, nine scores) and a passer (1,500 yards, nine touchdowns). WR Christian Kirk leads the SEC with 40 receptions but is averaging just 8.8 yards per catch. Junior defensive end Myles Garrett (28 career sacks, team-leading four this season) is getting closer to full strength from an ankle injury and senior strong safety Justin Evans leads Texas A&M with 48 tackles and three interceptions. The Aggies don’t allow a ton of points (19.2) considering they are 98th in the country in total defense (437.5) and 110th against the pass (278.2).
One thing that is becoming apparent in both the NFL and College Football is don’t go against New England or Alabama. Texas A&M is ranked 6th in the country and they’re getting 18 points. Normally, I would jump all over that, but this Alabama defense will slow them down and the Aggie defense can’t really stop anyone. I’m going to lay the big number and say the Tide roll.
Pick: Alabama -18