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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

4 takeaways: Aggies handle Vandy 69-58 for sixth straight victory

The Aggies are second in the SEC behind No. 1 Kentucky. Since its double-overtime loss to the Wildcats on Jan. 10, A&M has won six consecutive conference games, earning them a spot in Joe Lunardi’s latest bracketology as well as some AP votes.
There’s more than meets the eye with this ball club. Here are four takeaways from the Aggies’ hot streak and Saturday’s 69-58 win over Vanderbilt:
1. Rebounding problem is fixed– On Dec. 9, A&M became the first SEC team not to record an offensive rebound in 19 years. All looked lost for the Aggies, until Kentucky rolled into town. A&M only lost the rebounding effort by one board, perhaps the most impressive turnaround Coach Kennedy and Co. displayed all year after falling 65-44 to Alabama four days before. In their last five victories, the Aggies have out-rebounded their opponents. Aggies rebound, Aggies win.
2. Alex Caruso is a bigger factor than you’d think- Night after night, Caruso finds way to contribute in ways besides scoring. Danuel House and Jalen Jones have been the go-to-guys when it comes to scoring. The Aggies don’t have a predominant third scorer, but Caruso can become that guy. In A&M’s six-win stretch, the junior guard has posted four double-digit outings.
3. It’s not quite 2006-07 yet- It’s hard to compare to a year that encompassed possibly A&M’s best men’s basketball coach, Billy Gillispie, and player, Acie Law IV. However, the Aggies can reach that status one day with the recruits coming in and the players that are staying. A&M has done several impressive things this season, like defeating LSU and Tennessee on the road and competing well with a few ranked teams. But the Aggies haven’t yet won a game against a ranked opponent. This year’s squad has a lot left to prove, but they are trending in the right direction.
4. A&M will keep winning- The basketball team this week will spend a lot of its time eating airport food and going through security before going on the road to Ole Miss and Missouri. Ole Miss has a three-game winning streak of its own, but if the Aggies can get past them, the future looks bright. No game is a given, but A&M already handled Missouri 62-50. Last week A&M earned a couple AP votes and will likely be ranked in the near future if the wins continue.

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