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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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Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 20, 2024

The No. 13 Texas A&M women's tennis team took on No. 7 Georgia and served up a score of 4-1 to clinch its newest title: NCAA Champions.  The...

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Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Hot or Not: Week 12

Photo by: Jena Floyd

Check in on who’s hot or not in A&M Football.

After their home finale victory against FCS foe Western Carolina, the Aggies will hit the final stretch of their SEC schedule this Saturday against the Vanderbilt Commodores. Here are some things to watch for in Nashville this weekend.
Who’s Hot:
Tra Carson
The senior running back has been the leader of the Aggie rushing attack this season, eclipsing the 100 plateau in each of the last two games. The offensive line created large holes against Western Carolina, and that allowed Carson to wear down the Catamount defense.. With the Aggies going on the road to a hostile SEC environment, Carson’s ability to run the football effectively will help keep the Aggies offense on track, regardless of who is calling the shots at quarterback.
Christian Kirk
Whenever the ball is in Christian Kirk hands, good things happen for the Aggie offense. That was once again the case against Western Carolina, as Kirk led the Aggie receivers with nine catches for 122 yards and two trips to the endzone. Kirk needs to get more touches in order for the offense to run at its full potential. Through creative ways such as a direct snap out of the backfield or reverses along the perimeter, Kirk has shown his ability to be a game changer for A&M. Look for the Aggies to give him the ball early and often on Saturday night.
Kyle Allen
The sophomore saw action against Western Carolina for the first time since going 12 of 34 in a 23-3 loss at Ole Miss. He got his chance to return to the field when the Aggies had the game under control and made the most of his chance, going 6 of 6 for 88 yards and a touchdown in a little less than a quarter of play. Allen showed his maturity and ability to bounce back after two tough games against Alabama and Ole Miss. The starting quarterback competition has been reopened by the coaching staff, and if Allen gets the nod, look for him to attack early.
Who’s Not:
The Run Defense:
The Aggie defense played well in spurts last Saturday, but gave up big plays too often. The run defense has been an issue this season and it showed again on Saturday.  Western Carolina running back Detrez Newsome had a 65 yard run that eventually led to a touchdown, and put the Aggie defense on their heels early in the game. Vanderbilt running back Ralph Webb is approaching the 1,000 yard rushing mark and had 113 yards on 33 carries last week in their win against Kentucky. A&M should expect to the sophomore back be involved in the game as much as possible.
What to Watch For:
A low scoring game
This will be the first game that the Aggies will play in “cold weather” this season. With temperatures projected to hover in the low 40’s, look for the offenses to be slowed down in Nashville. The Commodore defense is allowing opponents to convert on just 25 percent of their third down attempts, good for best in the SEC and fourth in the NCAA. Vanderbilt also ranks fourth in the NCAA in red zone defense, and ranks 10th nationally in scoring defense, allowing just 17.4 points per game.

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