The Auburn Tigers were in heavy need of a victory. But for much of Saturday’s contest vs. the Texas A&M Aggies, it looked like that wasn’t going to happen. The Tigers were stifled offensively (sounds familiar) and their defense looked leaky (may also sound familiar). But they persevered and thanks to a 14-point 4th quarter, they took one away from the Aggies, 28-24.
Auburn managed to get on the comeback train despite a dismal effort from their ground game in the final quarter. Auburn tallied -5 yards rushing in the 4th, but aired it out a bit. 127 of their 259 passing yards came in the 4th, as Jarrett Stidham looked particularly sharp down the stretch. He tossed an 11-yard score to freshman Seth Williams to give the Tigers the lead on a drive that only needed two plays to get six points. Chandler Cox had been the one to score to make it 24-21 just roughly four minutes prior.
Those negative rushing yards were certainly “aided” by the fact that Stidham ‘recorded’ -15 yards rushing. But besides that, it was a long day for them on the ground. The Aggies held firm, allowing 34 yards on 16 carries otherwise. That would be their worst game on the ground since putting up 38 yards against the Clemson Tigers a year ago. The difference between this game and that, of course, is that Auburn came away victorious.
A&M simply couldn’t get it going in the second half. After scoring a touchdown to open up the third quarter, their drives looked like this: Punt, punt, field goal attempt (missed), interception, punt and then a sack of Kellen Mond ended the game. Credit to Auburn’s defense for making life hell for the Aggies, but this was a meltdown for A&M. The most yards they gained on drives following their scoring drive was 38. They had drives of 36, 6, 1, 20 and 16. That won’t win you games, obviously, and it certainly didn’t help their cause on Saturday on the road.
Auburn is now 6-3 on the season and 3-3 in SEC play this season. They’ll have to really try to pull something off if they wanna finish at or above .500, since their last opponents are the Georgia Bulldogs and, of course, the Alabama Crimson Tide. It will be intriguing to see what happens, because both are road games and they will most certainly not be favored in either contest.
A&M, meanwhile, falls to 5-4 and 3-3 in SEC play, as well. They have SEC matchups looming with the Ole Miss Rebels and the LSU Tigers. 4-4 seems to be the play for them, and make what you will of that, seeing as... well, that’s kind of where they’ve landed a lot lately.