What happened and what mattered in the Texas A&M 26-23 win over South Carolina?
Texas A&M 26, South Carolina 23
Kellen Mond was brilliant on the road. His emergence has been exactly what the team needed in the transition to the Jimbo Fisher era, coming through on the road with a 25-of-37 day for 353 yards and a score with 25 rushing yards. Just when things started to get tight late, the Aggie O went on the long march it needed for a touchdown and, effectively, the win.
Jake Bentley and the offense woke up too late. The A&M defense had a lot to do with that, but even bangs up, he was able to come up with a 223-yard, three touchdown day with a few two point conversions to get the offense going in the second half. But Mond and the A&M O came through when needed.
Time … of … possession. A&M came into the game third in the nation and first among SEC teams at controlling the clock, and it held on to the ball for 41:29. That overcomes 12 penalties, struggles on third downs, and problems holding down Bentley late.
And now, yeah, it really is possible to rank Texas A&M in the top ten, or a whole lot higher. The two losses are to Clemson and Alabama, and with road games at Mississippi State and Auburn up next, and three straight home games to finish up, there’s a chance to go on an interesting run. This is the first true road win under Fisher, and now the team gets two weeks off.
The disappointing season continues. Now, South Carolina has alternated wins and losses all season long. That’s good news with two weeks off to rest up with Tennessee coming up next, but now a bowl game is hardly a lock with at Ole Miss, at Florida, and at Clemson still to go along with the layup against UT-Chattanooga.