Texas A&M Aggies vs. Alabama Crimson Tide, 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS
If there's a team left on its schedule that can derail Alabama's drive for an undefeated regular season, it's Texas A&M. Part of this is that the remainder of the schedule is comprised of Western Carolina and Auburn, neither of which is likely to beat the Tide in Tuscaloosa. But part of it is also Texas A&M.
The Aggies have an explosive offense, particularly in the passing game, where Texas A&M ranks second in the SEC in terms of yardage, if only fifth when it comes to passing efficiency. Alabama, you have might have heard, gave up 296 yards passing to LSU, whose quarterback is not exactly like Johnny Manziel.
Alabama is also finishing up a particularly grinding part of its schedule after having a pretty easy go of things for the first seven games of the season. Before this game, the Tide faced Mississippi State at home and went to LSU last week. Alabama is not a team known for wearing down under Nick Saban, nor is it a team known for dropping the letdown game. But this game combines both of those elements into one, which is a little bit of a gamble when you're going for a national championship.
But Texas A&M is going through a tough stretch of its own. It started off with a home game against LSU, then trips to Auburn and Starkville as the introduction to the SEC continues. Taking a trip to Tuscaloosa after that is a little bit much to ask of any team, even a team with a credible freshman Heisman contender lining up under center.
Which is why I'm a little skeptical of the boomlet of Texas A&M predictions that we've seen. There are plenty of reasons to think that Alabama might be ripe for an upset and that A&M might be the team to do it -- but also more than enough reasons to think that TAMU will come up just a bit short.
Alabama 21, Texas A&M 17