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

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

The Battalion

Advertisement
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Advertisement
Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) dlivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Sixth sense
Neil Jhurani, Sports Writer • June 18, 2024

There’s nothing quite like Omaha when June rolls around.  Fans from across the country head to Charles Schwab Field to watch their teams...

Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Saves and a robbery
June 16, 2024
Advertisement
Enjoying the Destination
Enjoying the Destination
Cara Hudson, Maroon Life writer • June 17, 2024

Editor's note: This article is sponsored content. All photos were provided by Visit Bryan. For the history buffs, there’s a story to why...

Advertisement
Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin ChenJune 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) dlivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Sixth sense
June 18, 2024
Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Saves and a robbery
June 16, 2024

Hard-nosed, smash mouth football

Tanner+Garza+%26%238212%3B+THE+BATTALION
Tanner Garza — THE BATTALION

In a matchup of two old Southwest Conference rivals, it’s only fitting the Aggies scrap against Arkansas this weekend be characterized in one way: physical, tough, gritty, throwback football.
Of course, when going up against the team that leads the SEC in rushing, you’d expect nothing less. The Razorbacks run the ball with gusto, so much so that they did it 30 times in a row to end their 49-28 win over Texas Tech. Simply put, the Hogs know what they’re going to do, everyone else knows what they’re going to do and they live by the moniker “I triple-dog dare you” to stop us.
That’s not to say it’ll be a one-way street when it comes to pounding the rock Saturday, as A&M is very capable of putting hats on hats and bullying teams around itself. The Aggies are even better equipped to run the ball this year behind key pieces in 6-foot-6, 277-pound tight end Cameron Clear and 6-foot-5, 235-pound slot receiver Ricky Seals-Jones, who are mismatches in run-blocking against smaller linebackers and corners.
Offensive coordinator Jake Spavital has also shown more commitment to the run game, utilizing the pistol formation and even some jumbo, no wide receiver sets (gasp, an Air Raid team that can be physical) utilizing fullbacks and extra linemen, particular in goal line situations. A&M’s physicality along the line of scrimmage makes them much more potent on the ground than they’re often given credit for.
Here’s a fun fact: the Aggies actually outrushed the Hogs last year in Fayetteville, totaling 262 rushing yards on 44 attempts while Arkansas had just 201 on 33. For me, the most memorable drive of the game was A&M’s second offensive possession of the third quarter. The Aggies rolled up their sleeves, bit down on their mouthpieces and rushed nine consecutive times on a 68-yard touchdown drive that sapped 4:32 seconds of clock and gave the Razorbacks a taste of their own medicine.
Surprisingly, A&M’s only other offensive touchdown in the second half of last year’s contest came on another drive where the Aggies exclusively ran the ball, this one a seven-play, 57-yarder. The Razorbacks didn’t respond well to having the script flipped on them, which in turn enabled A&M to control the ball more and keep the defense on the sidelines, something we all were happy to see last year.
If Arkansas keeps it close again in the first half Saturday in Arlington, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Sumlin adjust to a ground attack again this go-round. The Aggies have the horses along the line to dominate a Razorback front four that has only two players over 300 pounds in the two-deep, and an underrated part of A&M’s game is utilizing it’s lengthier, more physical receivers to block on the perimeter.
Either way you look at it, A&M’s first SEC West showdown of the season may look a little like the football of old, where tight ends, defensive lineman and fullbacks are licking their chops to hit somebody every play. And who can complain, as it’s always fun to watch some good ole hard-nosed, smash-mouth, run-it-down-your-throat football.
Patrick Crank is a telecommunication media studies senior and the football editor for The Battalion.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *