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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

5 takeaways from A&M-Florida

Photo by Courtesy of Craig Bisacre/Texas A&M Athletics

The Aggies will face North Carolina in the Orange Bowl on Jan. 2.

No. 21 Texas A&M upset the No. 4 Florida Gators 41-38 during their second home game of the season. Here’s what we learned:
The broken record
Senior quarterback Kellen Mond is A&M’s new all-time passing leader. The record was formerly 8,011 yards held by Jerrod Johnson, who played from 2007-2010. Going into the game, Mond only needed 126 passing yards to break the record. Against the Gators, Mond connected with his receivers for 338 total passing yards. Mond currently leads A&M with 8,224 all-time passing yards.
To honor this accomplishment, Mond was given the game ball following the win.
“I honestly didn’t even know until the end of the game, but I mean it’s such a big mark,” Mond said. “I’m keeping it forever.”
Defensive performance
The defense shut down the dynamic duo of senior quarterback Kyle Trask and junior tight end Kyle Pitts, as they only connected for one touchdown. The A&M defense held the Gators to 90 total rushing yards and 312 total passing yards. Leading the way for the defense was senior linebacker Buddy Johnson with 11 total tackles, five of which were solo, and a forced fumble late in the fourth quarter at the A&M 48-yard line.
A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said the defense could have played better but took advantage of its opportunities.
“Our defense wasn’t great today but they were very opportunistic,” Fisher said. “They kept fighting and didn’t let [their] hands down.”
Seth Small
Junior kicker Seth Small was a hero for the Aggies during this game. Small was perfect on the day, as he made all five extra points and both field goals. His final field goal, a 26-yard kick, sealed the 41-38 win for the Aggies in the final seconds.
Small was grateful for the opportunity to win the game for the A&M.
“To God be the glory, I was really excited and thankful for the opportunity to just go out there and win the game for us,” Small said.
Outrushing the Gators
The Aggies out rushed the Gators by over 100 yards. The A&M defense held the Gators to 90 rushing yards, their worst performance rushing-wise this season. Offensively, A&M capitalized on this opportunity and recorded 205 rushing yards, their best rushing performance of this season.
Mond said all aspects of the offense shined today.
“I thought we were very diverse in the offense,” Mond said. “Every throw was big, every play is so meaningful.”
A receiving breakthrough
Prior to this game, the receivers had somewhat of a dismal start to the season with 189 receiving yards during the season opener against Vanderbilt. This improved during the second game of the season against Alabama, where A&M had 335 receiving yards. Against Florida, the A&M receivers had their best game with 338 yards. Six different receivers made catches during the game, and freshman wide receiver Chase Lane also had his first career touchdown. Standout for the game was sophomore wide receiver Caleb Chapman, who made a 51-yard touchdown catch that tied the game at 38 toward the end of the fourth quarter.
Fisher said the deep catches were key to winning the game and Chapman played well.
“Our receivers, we threw it, we ran it, we did what we had to do,” Fisher said. “Caleb was awesome, we got [the deep balls] and we got protection. We were able to get them today and hit them when we needed them.”

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