No. 16 Auburn Tigers (6-2 SU, 3-4-1 ATS) vs. Texas A&M Aggies (5-3 SU, 5-3 ATS)
College Football Week 10
Date/Time: Saturday November 4th, 2017. 12:00PM (EST)
Where: Kyle Field College Station, T.X.
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: AUB -15.5/A&M +15.5
Over/Under Total: TBA
One week after a big letdown loss to Mississippi State, the Texas A&M Aggies will try to regroup this weekend when they host the no. 16 Auburn Tigers at Kyle Field. For the Tigers, they are still alive in the SEC West with just one conference loss. If Auburn could find a way to remain unbeaten over these next few weeks, it would once again come down to the Iron Bowl to decide the fate of the SEC West. However, both of Auburns losses this year have been on the road and they face another daunting road challenge this week in College Station.
The good news for Auburn fans is that I feel like this offense is getting better and perhaps should continue to get better as the season progresses. Transfer quarterback Jarrett Stidham has provided some upside in the passing game completing 65% for 1,728 yards with 8 touchdowns and just 3 picks. While Stidham has provided some improvement in the passing game, Auburn is still a run first offense that focuses energy towards the zone read style of options. Kerryon Johnson leads the SEC with 14 rushing touchdowns which is tied with reigning Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson for the 2nd most in the FBS.
Johnson has racked up 723 yards on the ground this season while Kamryn Pettway has added an additional 305 yards and 6 scores on half the touches. As a group, the Tigers are averaging 237 yards per game this season which is the 19th best mark in college football. It is safe to say that Auburn has always been a dominate rushing force under Head Coach Gus Malzahn but they finally have some balance at the quarterback position to keep opposing defenses honest. As a result, the Tigers are averaging an impressive 36.3 points per game on the season.
Meanwhile Texas A&M is a team that I feel like is in full regression mode. I predicted it last week when I picked Mississippi State to beat the Aggies convincingly. I am still not convinced the Aggies are a good football team. They have experienced poor play at the quarterback position with Kellen Mond who is completing just 50.7% passing with 7 scores and 6 picks. Despite having one of the best receivers in the SEC in veteran Christian Kirk, the Aggies have been unable to get their superstar the football. As a result, the offense has been refined to running the football with a committee approach between Mond along with running backs Trayveon Williams and Keith Ford.
I have personally been unimpressed by this offense all year and I think it is worth pointing out that their defense is the reason they picked up the wins against South Carolina and Florida. To think Texas A&Ms defense would be the strength of this team is pretty surprising to say the least. However, lets give credit to the Aggies improvement on defense. After getting so much criticism following the 2nd half collapse to UCLA then the shootout overtime win with Arkansas, the Aggies held South Carolina to 17, Alabama to 27, and Florida to 17 points before last weeks loss. Speaking of last weeks 35-14 loss to Mississippi State, I cannot pin that on the defense given the fact the offense had just 285 yards of total offense and turned the ball over on 3 different occasions. Therefore if the offense can find some solutions, people may be surprised by the play of the Aggies defense.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: In regards to defense, Auburn has been playing extremely well on the defensive side of the football yielding just 300 yards per game as a borderline top 10 unit. Considering the Aggies struggles on offense, I just do not see many ways they can keep this game close unless they come up with turnovers. I have to play the probability factor for this one and that is to lay the points. Take Auburn -15.5. - Bet this game for FREE by taking advantage of a FAT 100% bonus up to $1000 at MyBookie! (Use Promo Code: PRDCT14)