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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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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

A&M women’s basketball conference opponents announced

Photo by Photo by Jonathan Taffet

Freshman F Janiah Barker (2) makes a layup during A&M’s game at Reed Arena on Sunday, Jan. 22, 2022.

The Texas A&M women’s basketball team will have its hands full in the upcoming season as it looks to build upon a 2022-23 campaign. The Aggies finished in the basement in SEC play with a 2-14 mark and 9-20 record overall in coach Joni Taylor’s first year in Aggieland.
The conference released each team’s SEC opponents for the 2023-24 season on Wednesday, June 28, as the maroon and white look for a more successful showing in their second year under Taylor. The schedule is far from a cakewalk, as A&M will face both the reigning national champions and a Sweet 16 team twice while welcoming a national powerhouse to Reed Arena.
Matchups so nice, they’ll do them twice
Arguably the most grueling aspect of the 2023-24 schedule is A&M’s home-and-home series with LSU, a team that will be coming off of its national title victory in April. The Tigers captured the championship behind the star play of junior forward Angel Reese and the leadership of coach Kim Mulkey, who picked up her fourth title after winning a trio at Baylor.
The Aggies faced the Bayou Bengals last season as well, with a night-and-day difference in their performance in both games. A&M was soundly defeated 74-34 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana before nearly upsetting LSU 72-66 a month later. As the Tigers add even more firepower through the transfer portal, it’s going to take everything the Aggies have to potentially eke out a win.
Adding to the difficulty of the conference slate are two matchups with Tennessee, as the Lady Volunteers reached both the SEC Championship and Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament in the spring. A&M and Tennessee met once last season, with the latter picking up a 62-50 win in College Station en route to a third-place finish in the SEC.
Auburn marks the final home-and-home opponent for A&M, offering short relief from the burdens of the schedule. The Tigers went just 16-15 last year with a 5-11 showing the SEC play, including a 65-55 win over the Aggies. As A&M bolsters its roster — including Auburn transfer guard Aicha Coulibaly, a member of the All-SEC Second Team last season — a victory over the Tigers should be manageable.
Welcome to Aggieland
If there’s a silver lining to the Aggies’ SEC slate, it’s that they get to face most of the seven teams that finished last season with a winning record in conference action in the friendly confines of Reed Arena. Along with LSU and Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi State and South Carolina will visit College Station, offering A&M a slight home-court advantage. Given the caliber of the competition, the Aggies will be thankful for any edge they can get. Additionally, A&M will face Arkansas and Vanderbilt at home.
Of the one-time opponents, the Gamecocks stand out the most, as coach Dawn Staley has transformed South Carolina into a national powerhouse in the past decade with national titles in 2017 and 2022. The reigning conference champions suffered their only loss of last season in the Final Four, running the SEC table while thumping A&M 76-34 in the process.
The Aggies failed to muster up a win against any of their future home opponents in the 2023 regular season, but ended the year on a high note with wins over the Commodores and Bulldogs in the SEC Tournament. Mississippi State, on the way to a 9-7 conference mark and trip to the second round of the NCAA Tournament, took down A&M twice while Alabama and Arkansas each picked up double-digit victories at their home arenas.
Putting a stop to the road woes
To say the Aggies struggled away from Reed Arena last season would be an understatement, with the team finishing a winless 0-11. Things aren’t much easier in 2024, as A&M will face not only LSU and Tennessee on the road, but also Ole Miss and Georgia, two teams that finished with a winning record in the SEC.
On the bright side, the Lady Bulldogs were one of the two teams the Aggies managed to defeat in the 2023 regular season, along with Kentucky. A&M picked up a close 75-73 victory over Georgia before a 74-67 win over the Wildcats in the home finale. Ole Miss, however, proved to be much more of a challenge to A&M, serving it a 57-38 home loss before ending the Aggies’ season with a 77-60 defeat in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament.
Auburn, Florida, Kentucky and Missouri round out A&M’s road trips and each serve as opportunistic matchups for the Aggies to break their losing streak in away games. All three squads finished at least four games below .500 in the SEC standings last season, with the Wildcats tied for last alongside A&M with a 2-14 record. Nevertheless, the Gators beat the Aggies by seven points twice, while Missouri embarrassed A&M 61-35.
Fans can expect the maroon and white to have a different look in the 2023-24 campaign with the addition of transfers Coulibaly, Kyndall Hunter from Texas, Lauren Ware from Arizona and Endyia Rogers from Oregon. A&M signed four prospects out of high school as well, including the state’s top player, five-star recruit Kylie Marshall from Mansfield Lake Ridge.

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