Get ready for some high-octane SEC West action, folks, because the stage is set, and it’s a battle of titans as Texas A&M plays host to the No. 11 Alabama Crimson Tide. This isn’t just your run-of-the-mill college football showdown; this is a clash of giants with divisional stakes and College Football Playoff implications!
Both teams had their fair share of hiccups early in the season, but they’ve roared back with a vengeance. Alabama went toe-to-toe with Ole Miss and Mississippi State, showcasing their defensive prowess after a rocky start. On the flip side, Texas A&M rebounded from a stumble against Miami with three consecutive double-digit wins, including a spectacular defensive performance against Arkansas.
When you’ve got Nick Saban and Jimbo Fisher facing off, you know it’s going to be a show. These two have been trading verbal jabs, and with their history, you can bet it’s going to be entertaining. The past encounters have been nail-biters, decided by the slimmest of margins, and it wouldn’t be a shocker if this 2023 showdown is equally heart-pounding.
Here’s the lowdown:
1. Kyle Field Rematch: It’s a return to Kyle Field for these teams, reminiscent of their 2021 meeting where the Aggies pulled off an astonishing upset. A 28-yard field goal as time expired handed Alabama its first loss to an unranked opponent in over a decade! Jimbo Fisher etched his name in history as the first Saban protégé to outshine the master.
2. Something to Prove: Both quarterbacks have something to prove. Jalen Milroe, after a brief benching, has reclaimed his starting position and led Alabama to victories over Ole Miss and Mississippi State. He’s putting up big numbers, and a win against Texas A&M could solidify his leadership. On the Aggies’ side, Max Johnson has been a steady hand since stepping in for Conner Weigman. But leading the team to a win against Alabama would be a game-changer and mark his arrival on the big stage.
3. Special Teams Standouts: Don’t sleep on the special teams! Alabama boasts Will Reichard, the top kicker who’s yet to miss a field goal this season, and their punter James Burnip is no slouch either. On the flip side, Texas A&M has the explosive Ainias Smith, who’s no stranger to turning heads with electrifying plays. Special teams could be a game-changer in this showdown.
How to Catch the Action Live:
- Date: Saturday, Oct. 7
- Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Kyle Field, College Station, Texas
- TV: CBS
- Live Stream: CBSSports.com, CBS Sports App (Free)
- Streaming with Flair: Paramount+ with Showtime (Try It Free)
Prediction and Picks: Last season, these teams combined for a mere 44 points, with Alabama scraping by with a 24-20 win. With Alabama’s offense still finding its rhythm and Texas A&M’s sturdy defense, expect a defensive showdown. Keep in mind, Texas A&M managed touchdowns through interception and punt returns against Arkansas. So, our bet is on the under, set at 49.5 points. Strap in for a defensive slugfest!
Our Pick?: Under 49.5