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

Junior G Wade Taylor IV (4) covers his face after a missed point during Texas A&Ms game against Arkansas on Feb. 20, 2024 at Reed Arena. (Jaime Rowe/The Battalion)
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Ali Camarillo (2) waiting to see if he got the out during Texas A&Ms game against UIW on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024 at Olsen Field. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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A&M welcomes new journalism professors from CNN, Dallas Morning News
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Members of the 2023-2024 Aggie Muster Committee pose outside the Jack K. Williams Administration Building. (Photo courtesy of Aggie Muster Committee)
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Sloppy Top: A&M football falls to No. 19 Tennessee, 20-13

Sophomore+RB+LeVeon+Moss+%288%29+runs+the+ball+during+Texas+A%26amp%3BMs+game+against+Alabama+on+Saturday%2C+Oct.+7%2C+2023.+%28Ishika+Samant%2FThe+Battalion%29
Photo by Ishika Samant

Sophomore RB Le’Veon Moss (8) runs the ball during Texas A&M’s game against Alabama on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023. (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)

An inability to find success on the road continues for Texas A&M as it dropped a sloppy affair on Rocky Top.
The Aggies fell 20-13 to No. 19 Tennessee, dropping their second straight contest and falling to 0-7 in their last seven road games. With the win, the Volunteers improved to 2-1 in the SEC to keep themselves alive in the conference title race, while the Aggies at 2-2 have now all but eliminated themselves in the SEC West.
A&M held onto the lead throughout most of the game before the Volunteers finally made the Aggies pay. With 6:47 left in the third quarter, Tennessee senior punt returner Dee Williams took a short punt 39 yards to the house, putting the Volunteers on top 14-10.
On the ensuing drive, the Maroon and White got the ball to the Tennessee 7-yard line before ultimately settling for a field goal. After that, the Aggies’ offense would not touch the red zone again while missing a 50-yard field goal.
Once again, the Aggies could not break through late.
Like many times before, the Maroon and White’s lack of offense and costly errors held them back from picking up a needed victory. A&M was only able to muster up 20 points last week against Alabama and were a touchdown shy of that mark this week in Knoxville, Tennessee.
The Aggies’ offense was unable to convert on 10 of its 15 third down plays, while also going 0-for-2 on fourth down opportunities. Oftentimes during these crucial plays, the Aggies found a way to hurt themselves.
Facing fourth-and-one in the middle of the second quarter on the Volunteer 37, redshirt sophomore quarterback Max Johnson tripped over his own lineman, leading to a turnover on downs.
Early in the third quarter on third down and three, Johnson found sophomore running back Le’Veon Moss up the sideline wide open, but Moss dropped the pass that would have led to a first down and likely more.
Simple mistakes like these can prove to be costly in a tough environment in the SEC. This appeared even more evident during the Aggies’ last two drives of the contest.
A&M had two attempts at the end of the game to either take the lead or send the game to overtime.
With 3:48 left, the Aggies got the ball on their own 25-yard line, trailing 17-13. The first two plays resulted in incomplete passes before a costly mistake by Johnson resulted in an interception on third down.
The Volunteers settled for a field goal after the pick, giving the Aggies a chance to make up for the previous drive. A&M set up with the ball on its own 23-yard line with 2:25 left, needing a touchdown to send the game to overtime.
Johnson led his team to their own 45-yard line before ultimately throwing another interception on 4th-and-10, ending the ballgame.
Despite the Volunteers giving the Aggies many opportunities to come away with a victory, the Maroon and White were unable to prevail. Now, the Aggies sit at 4-3 on the season, while the 12th Man hopes the season will not spiral to a far worse outcome.
After a 5-7 season last year the Aggie faithful hoped the momentum of the program would turn around this season. That can still be the case, but the Aggies will need to fix the mistakes before finishing out the rest of the conference schedule.
Tough road tests to Oxford, Mississippi and Baton Rouge, Louisiana still remain on the schedule. Before that, the Aggies will get some much needed rest during a bye week before hosting South Carolina on Oct. 28.

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