FACTS & STATS: Site: Tiger Stadium (102,321) — Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Television: ESPN. Home Record: LSU 5-2, Texas A&M 3-2. Away Record: LSU 1-2,
Texas A&M 3-2. Neutral Record: LSU 1-0, Texas A&M 1-0. Conference Record: LSU
3-4, Texas A&M 3-4. Series Record: LSU leads, 29-20-3.
GAME NOTES: The LSU Tigers and the Texas A&M Aggies will attempt to salvage
disappointing campaigns on Thanksgiving night, as the SEC rivals meet up at
Tiger Stadium in the regular-season finale for both teams.
LSU was once ranked as high as No. 8 in the nation following a 3-0 start, but
it has won just four of seven since then to fall out of the SEC Western
Division race. The Tigers have slipped to just 3-4 in SEC action following
back-to-back losses, falling at home to Alabama on Nov. 8 (20-13 in OT) on at
Arkansas on Nov. 15 (17-0).
Texas A&M has also fallen from grace after a fast start. The No. 6 team in the
nation after a 5-0 start, the Aggies have lost four of six since then to dip
to 7-4 overall and 3-4 in the SEC. They most recently lost to Missouri on
their home field on Nov. 15, 34-27.
LSU has a 29-20-3 lead over Texas A&M in the all-time series. The Tigers are
the only SEC West team the Aggies haven’t defeated since joining the league in
The once-potent LSU offense (28.0 ppg, 373.6 ypg) has regressed significantly
at the end of the season as it has scored a total of 23 points in the last
three contests. It managed a meager 123 total yards in last week’s shutout
Anthony Jennings was uninspiring under center against Arkansas (12-of-22, 87
yards) just like he has been all season, as he’s completing less than 48
percent of his passes for 1,352 yards, nine touchdowns and six interceptions.
His continued struggles could spell more Brandon Harris (.556 completions, 452
yards, six TDs, two INts).
Travin Dural has been able to overcome shoddy quarterback play by racking up
747 yards and seven touchdowns on 35 receptions, but no one else has more than
A strong running game (204.5 ypg) helps pick up the lackluster passing attack.
Leonard Fournette (745 yards, seven TDs) has put together a great freshman
campaign. Terrence Magee (471 yards, three TDs), Kenny Hilliard (431 yards,
six TDs) and Darrel Williams (280 yards, three TDs) are also worked in.
While the offense has fallen off of late, the Tigers’ defense (16.4 ppg, 312.9
ypg) is still top notch.
Kwon Alexander has a team-high 72 tackles to go with 7.0 TFL, a sack and two
forced fumbles. Danielle Hunter is also in the midst of an outstanding season
with 63 tackles, 12.0 TFL, 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble. Ronald Martin (63
tackles), Tre’Davious White and Rickey Jefferson all have two interceptions.
Texas A&M’s high-powered offense has slowed down in recent weeks, scoring 30
points or less in four of the last five games, but its year-to-date numbers
(36.0 ppg, 469.4 ypg) are still outstanding.
Quarterback Kenny Hill (.667 completions, 2,649 yards, 23 TDs, eight INTs) was
a Heisman favorite early in the season before tapering off and was suspended
for the previous two games, which opened the door for Kyle Allen (.608, 884
yards, 11 TDs, five INTs) to have success. Hill is expected to get his
starting gig back this week.
The Aggies have arguably the deepest group of talented receivers in the
nation, with five players tallying at least 440 yards and six with 27 catches
or more. Ricky Seals-Jones (443 yards, four TDs) leads the way with 47
receptions. Josh Reynolds (45 receptions, 746 yards) is a beast in the red
zone with 12 scores.
A modest rushing attack is spearheaded by a three-way committee between Tra
Carson (431 yards, five TDs), Trey Williams (412, five TDs) and Brandon
Williams (356 yards, three TDs).
After a strong start to the season, Texas A&M’s defense (27.7 ppg, 445.2 ypg)
has disappointed of late by allowing 34 points or more in four of the last
Myles Garrett has emerged as one of the nation’s top pass-rushers as a
freshman with 11.0 sacks. He is on the injury report with a concussion but is
listed as probable. Howard Matthews (67 tackles) and Deshazor Everett (65
tackles, INT) are neck-and-neck for the team lead in stops. Armani Watts has
three of the team’s four interceptions.
Both teams are reeling late in the year but plenty is still at stake on a
national primetime stage in terms of both bowl placement and pride. With LSU’s
struggles away from home, expect the Aggies to put up just enough offense to
outlast the Tigers.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Texas 24, LSU 21